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When André Sander sent in this Number 22 and a beer, his e-mail started off by simply stating: A real recommendation this time! As if the previous ones had been some sort of cruel hoax!

On my next visit to Berlin I will surely follow his advice. 

This could well be the most “exotic” Number 22 and a beer so far, seeing as how more peaople have probably sampled sushi, than a real Wiener Schnitzel, or  that great Austrian dish known as Tafelspitz, in essence boiled beef, but oh, what a beef it is! Austria may be small but its contributions to the gourmet world are endless.

Here we are served a Brettl-Jaus’n or board lunch. A decidedly rustic dish served in all alpine german-speaking regions, but elevated to its culinary peak in Austria. 

photo by andré sander for: Number 22 and a beer

photo by andré sander for: Number 22 and a beer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

„Heuriger in Berlin“

Schivelbeiner Straße 27
10439 Berlin

heuriger-in-berlin.de

Dark Hefe-Weizen   3,40€
Brettljaus’n                8,50€

If you dare to follow the Schievelbeiner Strasse in Berlin’s district Prenzlauer Berg down to almost its end you will come to an Austrian restaurant owned by Gerhard Masopust, who is an enthusiastic Austrian. His assignment is to bring original Wiener Schnitzel to Berlin, and that’s what his restaurant is famous for. And of course that was the reason we went there. But once we had arrived I remembered that nice “#22 and a beer”

tradition and so I skipped all the alternatives on the menu and ordered the #22. The place itself is not too crowded and the atmosphere is typically Austrian with a wooden interior and some kind of Austrian “Volksmusik”, which is not too annoying, since it is only audible in the very background.

Although I felt very hungry, it knocked me off my feet when the Brettljaus’n was brought by the waiter. It was an overloaded wooden plate with lots of meat on it. Salami, boiled ham, lyoner, gammon and Edamer. Ten or more pieces of each. So I probably got half a kilo of toppings. It came with mustard and fresh kren (Austrian horse radish) and some really good sour dough bread. I especially appreciated the bread, since it is hard to find tasty bread nowadays. All of the meat was very good and fresh. Try out the gammon with kren. It’s really yummy! Of course I couldn’t eat all – I ate about a third and even that was too much – but the friendly stuff saved the rest for us.

The price was really fair!

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So there I was, trapped in Bremen Main Station, with only 22 minutes to spare before my train left and an amazing hunger which had me dizzy and confused after a full day of meetings. (Dear Spirit, let the economy recover, hallelujah!)

Now, I am an optimist but also a realist and figured there was only one way to go: choose the dead industrially-raised cattle with the funky flame taste from the BK-Lounge. Quick, and probably germ-free.

But lo and behold a vision for my weary eyes. Directly across from Burger King was a pearl in the rough: Mai-Mai. A quick glance at the illuminated menu and everything was clear. Numbers! And the 22 actually sounded (and looked) good!

The only question on my mind- can they get in done in time?

The answer was reassuring: Only take three minute!  Spicy or sweet and sour? Rice or noodle? When train leave? Hamburg? Oh, lot of time!

But I was skeptical.

4 Minutes later I have my meal. The rice is good, the vegetables are all fresh, cooked crunchy but not raw, and the duck, despite the appearance that brings to mind a certain rare type of avian acne, is still moist and pleasantly crunchy. (The fact that it probably was shipped here that way from China and just thawed, is conveniently pushed aside.) Only weak point: the sauce is not spicy, but a bit salty. A genorous helping of sriracha helps.

photo by number 22 and a beer

photo by number 22 and a beer

Mai-Mai

Bremen Hauptbahnhof (Main Station) East Wing 
across from Burger King

Opening hours from around 8 am till 10 pm

Number 22 Crispy Duck: € 7,00

Becks Beer: € 2,00

 

A lot better than I had expected. I was happily filled with 5 minutes to spare.

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Baluchistan. A little like India. Only less delicious.

A quick glance in wikipedia will tell you where it is, but having some of the food from there, just might make you want to never go.

Admittedly, generalizing a region’s cuisine based on a sole visit to a restaurant thousands of miles away from the actual place is wrong. For all I know, the local specialties may well be delightful, a mixture of Indian and Persian influenced cooking, with nuanced spices, tender meats and refreshing exotic ingredients.

The version of Baluchi cooking to be found in this Hamburg restaurant used only one spice. And I am not really sure it even is a spice. Salt. And lots of it. The meat was fish, but remarkably dry as a bone. The only exotic ingredient to be found: a few pomegranate seeds strewn over the iceberg lettuce, (but trying to blend in by hiding under a heavy layer of dilled dressing.) Ok, here is my point: It stunk. This clearly might have been the worst of all possible Number 22s to be found. It was only the appetizer, so I ordered a main course to round off the evening as well and give the kitchen a second try. I will say this much: the chefs working here are at the least, erm, consistent.

photo: by number 22 and a beer

photo: by number 22 and a beer


Balutschistan
Grindelalle 91
20146 Hamburg
Tel +4940 41280246

Date eaten March 31, 2009
Price € 4,20

This number 22, “Lahori Machli,” was a fillet of fish, presumably pollock, fried in chick-pea flour and served with a side of two chutneys and a mixed salad. I think Lahori machli translates to “abhorrently mushy,” the deep-fried fish fillet was by no means crispy as the menu proclaimed but soft and fibrous. The concealed fish was dry and bland. The chutneys would have been great on toast, but were just very sweet and a total visit to the chutney shithouse. Terrible. And a mixed salad to go with it is just a lame way of filling up the plate. Guys, you really need to work on this one.

The beer was a refreshing König Ludwig Weissbier which is brewed in Castle Kaltenberg. The brewery is still owned by the descendants of bavarian King Ludwig III.

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Our 11th Number 22 and a beer is again from André Sander and Jill Koglatis of Berlin. Thanks! Not only is the restaurant something new for us, this contribution is proof that simply by adhering to the Number 22 and a beer strategy of ordering, you can still get a table at a full restaurant, even without knowing the maitre d’! But read on dear visitor:

This time André and Jill have found a truly exotic restaurant and take us on a culinary excursion to Ethiopia.

And what an optical event it is!

I have never been to Ethiopa, and only once ate an ethiopian meal, in that well-known capital of Ethiopian ex-pats, Minneapolis, Minnesota. And it was truly memorable.

It left me filled for days, which I ascribe to the traditional ethiopian bread, known as injera. Made from flour of an ethiopan grass called teff, which is mixed with water and left to ferment for several days. But I guess the baking of the bread doesn’t stop the fermantation process completely, and about two hours after the meal, the belly puffs up and a slight, let me call it, “discomfort” sets in. But the stuff on the teff bread was purely magical and extremely spicy.

photo: andré sander for number 22 and a beer

photo: andré sander for number 22 and a beer

Bejte-Ethiopia
Zietenstrasse 8
10783 Berlin
TEL: 004930 / 2625933

http://www.bejte-ethiopia.de/

Our advice: call for reservations!

Price of meal: 17 Euros, Beer 3 Euros, Maxi-Malz (Malt beer) 2,10 Euros

Number 22: Vegetarian selection for two

The place was quite packed, we nearly did not get a table. But knowing in advance what we would eat, really reduces the time spent staring into menus, so we could assure the owner that we would be out in an hour.

The food looked as if it had expected the photo shoot. Different delicious lentil stuff, some of it spicy, some of it with horseradish, something containing potatoes, dollops of kale, tomato salad. Served with ethiopian sourdough bread, and to be eaten without cutlery, so wash your hands! It all tasted very good, and it was very filling.

The photo does not do the interior design justice, it is really really, erm, colourful and the place smells of incense. If you cannot stand the smell of incense, wait for warmer temperatures and sit outside, where as an added bonus you can see people sneaking into the swinger club on the other side of the road.

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I am glad to say that I am back and all bones are where they should be, and in as many segments as our maker intended.

The snow, sun and skiing were great, but sadly no 22s were to be found in the Austrian Alps. While I was away a few more did come in from faithful readers. This entry is from Jill Koglatis (text) and André Sander (photo) from Berlin. Thanks for your contribution!

Above all I would like to commend André and Jill for their bravery. Actually eating in a restaurant that uses dishes such as those pictured below, is a feat I would compare to willing yourself to jump off a bridge attached by nothing more than a rubber band. For some reason I can’t help thinking the restaurant owners must have picked up the china at the going-out-of-business-sale of this fine establishment.

photo:  André Sander for Number 22 and a beer

photo: André Sander for Number 22 and a beer

Mr. Long
Kollwitzstraße 89
10435 Berlin
http://www.mrlongandfriends-berlin.de/

(The actual menu and the one available online differ.)

Noodle soup with chicken, 5,50 €
(Beer: Saigon, 2,70 €)

We were a bit disappointed that number 22 was a soup, but since we skipped ordering number 22 at another place a few days ago because it was soup, this time we did not chicken out.
The soup looked very healthy, was a bit spicy and not the ideal dish for people who hate cilantro and the like.
The staff was friendly (in Berlin this always has to be mentioned).

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This Number 22 and a beer comes to us from Tobias Krämer. I am always happy to have non-asian 22s, if only to knock over the stereotype that only Asian restaurants use numbers. Actually I am currently thinking about calling my local government representative to have him sponsor a bill at the EU, that would require all restaurants to number their menus. Even the ones with really good food.

Tobias Number 22 and a beer is from a portuguese place in Hamburg, Germany. I know this area well as it is in my hometown, and being near the harbor this listing is particularly of interest for tourists who plan to visit Hamburg reading this site, I love my hometown but this quote from comedian Mike Myers as Dieter on the hilarous SNL-Skit “sprockets” sums up the atmosphere of this city best:” Ahh, Hamburg. A place where you can skate home on other people’s frozen vomit.”

22andabeer
photo: Tobias Krämer for Number 22 and a beer

Restaurant O Pescador
Ditmar-Koel-Straße 17
D-20459 Hamburg

Telephone: +49.(0)40.319 30 00

http://www.pescador-hamburg.de

Price: appr. 6 Euros

My Nummer 22 & a beer comes from a nice portuguese Restaurant in Hamburg, Germany, which is called “O Pescador”. It is a two minutes walk from the S- and U-Bahn Station “Landungsbrücken” to the Ditmar-Koel-Straße, where a lot of portuguese and spanish restaurants reside.
Number 22 is a starter called “Tapas Chef Style” with ham, cheese, olives and pickles. This dish itself is nothing special, but the fish in that restaurant is awesome.
So if you like fish and don’t want to spend much money (6€ the starter, about 12€ the main couse), it is a good choise to go there. There is a nice atmosphere and decoration, but you should make a reservation if you don’t want to wait for a free table.

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Today’s Number 22 and a beer comes to us from reader Holger Boerner of Berlin. Thanks Holger for the dish and recommendation.

If you are travelling through Germany on a budget Berlin is a great bet. In no other German city will you encounter as many restaurants with good food and almost ridiculously low prices. In a Thai place in Friedrichshain I actually once had a vegetarian coconut soup that cost less than the beer. And the brew was domestic!

Holger opted for a german classic: malt beer. Not actually beer, this non-alcoholic beverage is sweet and dark brown and a favorite among german kids. “Zis iss a bier, zat makes us look like ze grone ups!”
I guess it is one of those things you have to grow up with to appreciate. I hate it, then again, I have never ever met a German who likes root beer.

22andabeer_6
photo: Holger Boerner for Number 22 and a beer!

Restaurant Lieu in BErlin
Kurfürstenstr. 112
10787 Berlin/Germany
U-Bahn Wittenbergplatz then a short walk
or take the bus (Line 100) to Schillstr. and walk 50 meters
Opening hours:
M-F: 12:00 – 15:00 + 17:30 – 23:00
Saturday: 17:30 – 23:00
closed on Sunday
http://www.lieu-in-berlin.de

Date eaten: March 11 2009
Preis: € 3,50 , Maltbeer € 2,50

Coconut milk soup with shrimp
Pleasantly spiced, not too hot soup with a good amount of fresh ingredients and 2 large shrimp

Restaurant Lieu is a friendly restaurant with very good food, courteous service and great prices.

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