Our time in Berlin was winding down, and we were more than half through with our Europe Trip. We went on tours, we climbed glass domes, and I learned that our moms were in better shape than us. Seriously, my feet were killing me, but our moms didn’t seem phased. I thought people slowed down as they aged. It is fair. Most Importantly, we had some great food. Chicken, schnitzel, and Burgers, oh my! But I didn’t have anything planned for our last meal, and I don’t know why. That is very unlike me as I usually plan more restaurants than we have meals to eat. As a pack of hungry people, we decided to stumble upon a restaurant in the Mitte area. We found a traditional, but slightly touristy, German restaurant Nante Eck.
As this was just a stumble upon I knew nothing about Nante-Eck before walking into the restaurant, but by pulling up their website after the fact I was able to find a lot of information. Nante Eck’s goal is to take you on a Berlin culinary journey staring back in the early 1900s and ending up in Modern day. As such their menu consists of a lot of your traditional Berliner foods as well as modern interpretations. This is mirrored in their slightly old fashioned decor. While I think the intent was to go for 1920s-40 decor, I feel like they were a few decades off, but it still manages to capture the feel.
While their waiters and waitresses wear old fashioned German old fashioned garb.
This is not quite lederhosen as that is from a different region, but very similar. It is these aspects of the Nante Eck and the fact that it is a stones throw from the Brandenburg Gate that give this restaurant a bit of a toursty feel.
Nante Eck’s Food
A main course on Nante Eck’s menu will typically run you somewhere between 10€-20€. However, there are several small plates that are between 4€-8€ which are good for a snack. Their menu consisted of exactly what you would expect from a traditional-style german restaurant; a lot of meat, potatoes, dumplings, and cabbage. Options included Wiener Schnitzel, Pork Knuckle, and Wurst.
Personally, I was in the mood to stuff my face with sausage. So I ordered the “Charlottenberg Sausage Parade”. This consisted of sausages of all shapes and sizes; Eisbeinbockwurst, schinkenknacker, and Rostbratwurst. It was a real sausage fest. To drink i ordered a Fassbrause. Which is a drink made from fruit and spices. They call it a lemonade, but it really is a weird hybrid between lemonade, ginger ale, and cider. It was freaking delicious, it is like a less sweet version of my favorite soda Almdudler. In all this ran me about 17€… ouch.
Stephanie ordered the Berliner Buletten. Which is a Berlin-style meatball where the ground meat is mixed with soften Brötchen (bread rolls). This berlin favorite is served many ways hot or cold, the people here apparently love them. Her meatballs came with bacon green beans and fried potatoes. Since I got sausage and Stephanie balls at this point, as someone with the maturity of a twelve year old, I think I am obligated to giggle like a schoolgirl here….teeheehee.
My Charlottenburg Sausage Parade was pretty good, but it wasn’t life changing good. The the required flavors were there, but all and all it was nothing to write home about. It may have been a sausage parade, but it was only one of those small town homecoming parades, rather than the Macy’s Parade. Of all the meals that we had in berlin this was our most expensive and honestly most disappointing. In a world of fantastic flavors, it just didn’t stand out. However, Stephanie’s meatballs were a different story.
Stephanie’s Take on Nante Eck
Trying exciting and local foods is one of my favorite… who am I kidding… my absolute favorite part of travel. The thrill of awakening my pallet with new flavors and ingredients is my kind of adventure. However, there are unique moments that unexpectedly wrap you in comfort while surrounded in the unfamiliar. My meal at Nante Eck brought food feelings of nostalgia bite after bite. The potato hash was roasted, rustic, and riddled with flavor. When it comes to food memories, potatoes are most likely to be at the center. So eating a good potato is like cuddling with your most fluffy and warm blanket.
The meatballs were clearly made with love. They were swimming in the gravy, roux, sauce, river of yum and was lick your plate good. It was like grandma’s cooking level tasty. Then to save the best for last, those green beans. Those wiggle worthy, mouth watering perfectly cooked green beans with salty chunks of pork goodness and my favorite part of the entire plate. They made me want to go back in time to tell young Stephanie that green beans will one day be her favorite part of a meal, just to see her face. This unassuming and “normal” plate of food ended up marrying the past with the present in a way that only food can do.
Nante Eck is traditional German comfort food at its best. While some dishes are forgettable, others can take you to a place that you have long forgotten.