the ultimate food bucket list

Jun 16th, 2016

Ladies and gentlemen,

Welcome to the very first, annual BERLIN’S TOP 50 EATERIES list! A selection of Berlin’s best restaurants and eateries, from fine dining restaurants to shifty imbiss joints and from pizza places to street food markets. THE quintessential eating institutions for locals – a true Berlin food bucket list!

There is no use in denying that we’re living in the age of restaurant top lists and awards. From Michelin Stars to The World’s 50 Best and Eater lists, we are surrounded by rankings designed to optimize our eating. I’ve been contributing my fair share to this frantic list making, from my eternal hunt for the best Döner Kebab to my most recent ice cream endeavours. I also curated an amazing map for with the 38 most essential eats and drinks of Berlin, an exceptionally useful tool for people visiting the city with not only food but also bakeries, coffee shops and bars. Doing all these top lists I realized on thing though: We’re missing one fundamental top list, a list of Berlin’s very best eateries from the perspective of a local. A list of those eateries that truly define Berlin’s food scene and that together form the culinary backbone of our dear city, of the food institutions who lead the way in their respective restaurant categories and act as culinary role models to their peers.

“THE quintessential eating institutions for locals – a true Berlin food bucket list!”

That’s why I spent the last months composing Berlin’s Top 50 Eateries 2016. This list goes hand in hand with the Berlin Food Stories mission: To celebrate the achievements of Berlin’s best eateries, to support quality thinking within the Berlin food scene and to tell the stories of Berlin’s true food heroes. Of course this is a highly subjective list, but if my overly excessive eating at this city’s food establishments is good for anything, then it’s such a list.

Each year I’ll release a new list of top eateries and every food serving institution in the city is eligible to win a spot on the list. Only proper meals, no bakeries, cafés, ice cream shops or bars. Every year I’ll revisit last year’s top eateries and I’ll assess them against new restaurants. Because a win of course comes with an obligation to stay great, be consistent and to improve the quality of the food experience. Every day, every service.

All eateries on the list have yellow “Top Eatery 2016” stickers which you can look out for in their windows or their doors. Help me celebrate the achievements of these food heroes by visiting these eateries and supporting their businesses. Because these 50 places are truly damn exceptional (ranked in alphabetical order):


Top Eatery Berlin 2016

Adana Grillhaus
Traditional Turkish Grill House with the tastiest lamb chops in town
Alt Wien
If not home to the best Schnitzel, then at least the best Austrian restaurant in Berlin
Home of the Fatteh and the most amazing example of Berlin’s Middle Eastern food culture
Bandol Sur Mer
The relaxed fine dining restaurant with a modern take on French cuisine
Big Stuff BBQ
The papa bear of the Berlin BBQ scene and the industry benchmark
Bite Club
A summer street food party like no other with exceptional vendor curation
The best food truck in Berlin serving delicious things inside delicious buns.
The true Berlin burger and nightime favourite
Cocolo Ramen
The champions of Berlin ramen
The experimental Austrian gastro winebar
Da Jia Le
The quality thinker of the Chinese food scene
The Nordic restaurant with its exceptional modern seafood menu
Doyum Grillhaus
The best Adana kebab in Berlin an extraordinary destination for Turkish grilled meats
Duc Anh (at Dong Xuan)
Simply the best Vietnamese food in Berlin
Traditional German Brotzeit based with oustanding charcuterie and cheeses
The very best produce focused dining experience in Berlin
Grill Royal
Notorious celebrity hangout and best steak house
Güllü Lahmacun
Homemade Turkish heaven with exceptional Manti and Gözleme
Neo-Austrian refined fine dining on the banks of the canal in Kreuzberg
Imbiss 204
The magical German eatery with the best meatball buletten in Berlin
The Berlin döner institution the döner kebab meat benchmark
Industry Standard
The ground breaking modern bistro that put Neukölln on the food map
Iconic department store with its incredible delicatessen store
Konak Izmir
The king of the Berlin köfte sandwich
Home to Berlin’s finest currywurst
Kumpel & Keule
One stop meat shop and home to the best Leberkäs-Semmel in Berlin
Lavanderia Vecchia
Hidden Neukölln gem serving a one menu Italian dream
Lebensmittel in Mitte
The very best place for an exceptional Southern German lunch
Lode & Stijn
The exceptional Dutch neobistro
The iconic German bistro and landmark of regional nose to tail dining
The extraordinary Jewish deli and home to the best pastrami
Nobelhart & Schmutzig
The regional produce focused revolution of Berlin fine dining
The best sushi in Berlin by a Korean sushimaster in a wife beater
Pauly Saal
Contemporary and fresh German fine dining in a stunning location
Pignut BBQ
U.S. Southern style pork and chicken BBQ in the Arminiusmarkthalle
The iconic German delicatessen with its famous smoked fish and meats
The amazing Schöneberg chicken döner kebab heaven
Salumeria Lamuri
The very best Italian pasta salumeria in Berlin
Hunan-style restaurant and spiciest Chinese food in Berlin
The one and only successful execution of Asian burgers
Standard Pizza
Outstanding Neapolitan style pizza perfection
Street Food Thursday
The one and only mother of all Berlin street food markets
Thai Park
The extraordinarly unique piece of Thai food culture in West Berlin
The Bird
Berlin’s most famous burger- and steakhouse
The Store Kitchen
The monumentally fresh and vibrant contemporary eatery in the Soho House
Tommi’s Burger Joint
Our Icelandic messenger of true burger hope
W – Der Imbiss
The gloriously unique Hawaian-Indian-Mexican fast food joint
The best and most authentic Japanese restaurant in Berlin
The hidden Hinterhof Neapolitan style pizza gem in Kreuzberg
Zur letzten Instanz
Because once in a while we all need to eat a proper Eisbein

Because one thing will never change: Life is too damn short for bad meals!