Omoni, Japanese Restaurant, Berlin, Germany
It’s not exactly news that one can always discover a great new place in Berlin — if one only searches. The press and the internet often outdo each other in reviewing the latest restaurants and bars, so I should probably refrain from writing about Berlin’s restaurants if I’m looking to get any attention with this blog. But since this is not my motivation in writing, I of course will continue to write about what I want, including interesting or less interesting places, also those in Berlin. And if I look at the stats of my blog, it always surprises me to see which articles are read more and which less. I don’t really see any particular logic behind it, since there aren’t subjects that would seem to connect the interest of the readers. So, it isn’t that the reports about wine necessarily have more readers than reviews about restaurants. If the place is rather unknown or not many people wrote about it before or posted about it on any social network, then it happens that my review appears among top 5 in google or other search engines. But again, this doesn’t mean so much, since my handful of reviews of Bordeaux wines are all pretty popular, although many reviewers have written about these same wines. The good thing about this realization is that you can just write about anything and if you do that — and make it entertaining enough, hopefully — you will find one reader or another. As said, I’d like to continue writing only about my personal and, thus, of course, subjective experiences and insights.
Unfortunately, I think there’s not much good sushi in Berlin. This is probably for a variety of reasons. Since there is not really a Japanese community in Berlin (I have heard there is only one of a considerable size in Düsseldorf), so the demand for “real” Japanese cuisine is limited. Another reason is the lack of fresh fish – of course there is salmon, tuna and shrimp, but quite seldom would you come across the kinds of fish that you can find easily at any Sushi restaurant in NY, LA or even in Moscow. Last but not least, usually Japanese food is expensive. And expensive food does not fit in Berlin somehow, in particular if you are running a cool place like Omoni.
To avoid any misunderstanding: Omoni is one of the best Japanese (Korean) restaurants in Berlin and I appreciate their price performance ration.
A colleague of mine is even more on the hunt for hip new restaurants and also event venues than I. Many years ago he took me to Omoni. I have always remembered it, because it was not just a culinary experience, but the design and atmosphere of the restaurant was very stylish in a very pleasing way.
When I returned recently to this place, I was angry at myself that I hadn’t been back much sooner. This is a very good and still very stimulating restaurant.
It is on a dark side street in the so-called Gleimviertel, a quarter of Berlin district Prenzlauer Berg. If you have not read about the restaurant before or haven’t been taken there by a friend, you will never find this Japanese place. From the outside, you can see a table in a poorly lit shop window, and only if you look closer do you realize that this is the dining room of a tiny restaurant. In the first room, which you can also see from outside, most of the seats are rather narrow, in order to accommodate more people. Although it is narrow, it is particular, not loud and very friendly. In the second, back room is the sushi bar and maybe other two or three tables.
The menu mainly offers Japanese dishes: sushi, sashimi most of all rolls.
Soups and a few more hot meals also make reference to Korean cuisine as well.
As said at the beginning: Berlin is not the place for outstanding sushi. You cannot get – simply speaking – appropriate variety of fish and sea food in Berlin if you don’t want to spend a fortune. This explains why any offer at a Sushi place is limited in comparision to restaurants in Japan, Hongkong, New York or Los Angeles. But it is not only a question of access to fresh ingredient, it is a matter of money as well. Omoni offers under current circumstances very good sushi for very fair money. This does not allow exotic fish and perhaps it would not even fit to the modest, friendly and native mentality of the restaurant owners, but this is only a guess.
The list of wine and beer is small but very reasonable.
Omoni has no wegpage (at least I haven’t found one). They are at Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/pages/Omoni/171813879520332https://www.facebook.com/pages/Omoni/171813879520332). Please make a reservation as this place is constantly full.