Some of the best BBQ ribs in the city paired with an extraordinary selection of beers – that’s the eatery Chicago Williams BBQ in northern Mitte. With their exceptional service and genuine passion, Chicago Williams is one of my favourite destinations in Berlin for bigger groups.
Chicago Williams opened up it’s doors in Berlin in November 2012 and somehow succeeded to evade my attention for the first 6 months of it’s existence. Located right off the corner Chausseestraße and Torstraße, this restaurant is all about quality American BBQ paired with the best beers, all served by a couple of guys with big hearts. It’s hard not to like Chicago Williams from the start, you enter the place and as a first gesture you are welcomed with a cup of tasty, homemade corn soup to satisfy any pressing hunger cravings. Then you’re going to have to choose your first beer, a task where you might have to ask for help. Chicago Williams has a fantastic selection of beers and the most impressive thing is that most of them are German, despite the fact that many of them are hoppy ales, a beer variety which is quite uncommon in German breweries.
The ribs are perfectly cooked, smoked to perfection and basted with a delicious BBQ sauce to the point where they just softly glide off the bone
They buy beers in small quantities according to the seasonal availability and owner Holger or any of the other guys will be more than happy to explain the current selection to you. If you’re not sure what to have, I would strongly recommend going for a recommendation of the guys – you won’t regret it. Personally I’m blown away by the selection. I had no idea that traditional, German breweries like Maisels, Schneider or Unertl are brewing small batches of special beer but the guys at Chicago Williams do and if you’re open to new beer experiences you should just leave anything you’re doing right now and head over there. Do it.
The best thing is, beer is by far not the only reason to visit Chicago Williams. Not at all. Because while you’re getting smashed on tasty beer you can also indulge in some of the best BBQ in town. Choose between ribs, brisket, pulled pork or sausages and get some cole slaw or gravy with mash on the side. Choose any combination of mains and sides or if you show up with a couple of people you can order a nice mix platter that will allow you to sample a larger part of the delicious menu. Is the food good? Ye, absolutely, but it’s important to emphasize that the ribs and the chicken are the standout items on the menu. The ribs are perfectly cooked, smoked to perfection and basted with a delicious BBQ sauce to the point where they just softly glide off the bone. The chicken legs also hit the spot, with their crispy skin and juicy meat. The sausages can also be amazing, it depends a bit on the batch. And the sides should not be neglected, the cole slaw fresh and crispy, the potato mash buttery and delicious. They’ve hit the right spot with the food and the way it’s served fits the setting of the dining experience perfectly.
The Chicago Williams owners are proper dudes and really some of the best hosts in Berlin
Another great part of the Chicago Williams experience are the owners and just how passionate they are about this project. If you’re lucky, you’ll get to have a beer conversation with Holger or Navid. And if you’re really lucky they will show off their vast beer collection, but then you better brace yourself for the beer experience of your life. Because if there is something Holger likes, it’s sharing his passion for beers with people and the result will be a tasting session extraordinaire that will have a significant effect on your soberness.
Chicago Williams has quickly secured a spot on my Berlin favourites list and I’m pretty sure it’s there to stay. Who doesn’t love a friendly and open-hearted place with great food and drink? The Chicago Williams owners are proper dudes and really some of the best hosts in Berlin. And this is exactly what makes Chicago Williams special, it’s the place you go with a big group to have a big night out with lots of food and drink. There are several better BBQ places in Berlin who put more emphasis on the quality of their craft, but not many who master the art of hosting like these guys. Pay them a visit soon to find out yourself.