Horváth, Restaurant, Berlin, Germany
There are two really interesting similarities between Nobelhart & Schmutzig (https://avdwineandfood.net/2015/09/18/nobelhart-schmutzig-restaurant-berlin/) and the restaurant Horvath in Berlin: both had sturgeon and chicken on their menu at their main courses. The philosophy is perhaps not even too different either as both chefs are using local ingredient – vegetables, fishes and meat – almost only out of the region around Berlin a bit farther. The chicken wasn’t from Brandenburg but Schleswig-Holstein, a northern county of Germany.
Nonetheless and being honest one understands quickly why Hovarth’s chef Sebastian Frank has just received a second Michelin star. His very personal creations are rich of aromas and high-contrast. It is very tasty and a wonderful eating experience. Although the cooking is not too experimental the location and composition of the restaurant is unexpected in an urban subcultural area of Berlin: Landwehr Kanal in Berlin Kreuzberg. Some legend of bars and inns are just around the corner as Anker Klause or Hotel. Somehow this is something you can find almost only in the German capital: two Michelin star restaurant in Kreuzberg!
The place has its very special charm: on the ground floor of a classic Berlin house facing a canal at a street called Paul Linke Ufer. As said, you would rather expect a typical pub, Kneipe or inn but not a multiple awarded top restaurant. Smartly decorated, not covering the real Berlin style of place but due to some very beautiful design ideas a great mixture of elegance and down to earth. This said, this has been a restaurant for almost 100 years now. During the 70ies and 80ies it belonged to an Austrian writer and philosopher called Oswald Wiener and it was called Exil (Excile). For some years this place has had a legendary history. So basically a very good basis for another Austrian in Berlin: Sebastian Frank is Austrian and became chef of Horváth in 2010. Since 2014 he even owns the place together with his wife. Since this November he has two Michelin Stars. What a story!
The welcome is a little bit distanced. Service rushed around too much until they took notice of you. Although the menu is self explainable I would have expected a little bit more attentions: otherwise food is the attraction and not the staff. Probably the best time to come would be during summer as there is a nice terrace in front. Nevertheless, it was already autumnal.
Our menu contains seven courses with a degustation of wines. It was a wonderful experience and it was a great surprise! Indeed it delivered more than we could expect: regional ingredient in an expressive extension, surprising but very smart combinations of tastes. Each dish was an experience by itself. Each next a real different approach, taste and flavor but after all courses you could understand a kind of inner logic behind the whole menu. Cross vegetables, creamy sauce like in Austria, tender fish and many fruity but certainly not exotic moments.
Unfortunately we somehow fucked it up to make good pictures of each dishes. Before any of this bad images would destroy the real beauty but also essence of it, please accept that I am publishing only some of them.
mushroom | cherry| grüner veltliner
collard greens | camelina | corn
mushroom | cherry| grüner veltliner
Berlin now has unbelievable 20 (!) Michelin Star restaurant of which six have two! I mentioned some familiarity among Nobelhardt & Schmutzig and Horváth. To make this article not less visual than others I can add another picture : Two very lucky bastards:
Sebastian Frank, Chef of Harváth and Micha Schäffer of Nobelhardt & Schmutzig. Both in Berlin Kreuzberg.
Not to leave you in the impression there wouldn’t be something less good. I did not enjoy too much the selection of wine . It was very well-selected, modest in a way but honestly also without risks and therefore without any real surprise.
Have a look at Horváth’s webplage. And make sure you make a reservation in time! http://www.restaurant-horvath.de/