überlin

Chutnify

by James Glazebrook

Chutnify Curry Restaurant Berlin

It’s no secret that most Indian food in Berlin, and no doubt the rest of Germany, blows. It seems that most spices imported from the subcontinent are sent straight to Currywurst stands, without so much as wafting over the city’s actual curry houses.  The situation is slowly improving, however, and Berlin has decent tandoori and Sri Lankan places, and now somewhere to get freshly-made dosas.

Chutnify is a colourful and cute little eatery in Prenzlauer Berg’s alarmingly clean Kollwitzkiez. It specialises in the South Indian equivalent of a crêpe, full to bursting with minced lamb, tandoori chicken or vegetarian alternatives, and served with a tantalising selection of chutneys. We recommend trying the mixed platter, which includes the spectacular Mumbai beach snack Bhelpuri and two delicious dosas, asking for everything “Indian hot” and doubling down with the sauce they call “the Chillifier”. If you do go overboard on the spice, you can always cool off with the surprisingly good mango cream, served with marscarpone and fresh basil.

Chutnify may not serve anything as hot as your favourite curry house back home, but it is surely the most authentic taste of India that you’ll get in this fair city of ours. Check it out and see what you think!

Chutnify Curry Restaurant Bottles

Chutnify Curry Restaurant Berlin

Sigiriya: The Best Curry in Berlin?

by James Glazebrook

The search for Berlin’s best curry is finally over. I say “best”, but you could probably substitute the words “only” and “edible”, as the low quality of the city’s Indian food is something you can’t truly appreciate until you’ve tasted it for yourself. Sure, we’ve found decent tandoori, but actual curry, with strong distinctive flavour and – more importantly – plenty of spice, has so far eluded us. Until we read this post on Footprints in Berlin, and followed their recommendation to Sigiriya in Freidrichshain. Sigiriya serves Sri Lankan, so nothing like what you’ve tasted on Brick Lane or in Bradford, but the deconstructed dishes with multiple sauces, heavy on the coconut, are certainly tasty enough. Even though I asked for the hottest thing on the menu, and then asked for it even hotter, it was Zoë who got something too scharf to handle. The lamb curry spiced with cinnamon and garlic, with sweet/sharp beetroot is the hottest thing I’ve tasted in Berlin – which is a Very Good Thing Indeed. Go check it out, and let us know what you think; and if you’ve found somewhere even better, we’d love to hear about it!

Miss / Bliss

by James Glazebrook

Absence really does make the heart grow fonder. We were struggling to think of what we missed about London when we made our first return trip a few weeks ago, but now it’s come flooding back. Friends, family, facilities – all the stuff you take for granted when you live with it every day. But for every thing we pine for, we can think of another that it’s bliss to be free from. Hence these two conflicting lists: to paraphrase James Murphy, London, We Love You But You Were Bringing Us Down.

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Buddha Republic

by James Glazebrook

We like Indian food, and we like it hot. We hail from the home of Curry Hell, allegedly the world’s hottest curry and free to anyone who can keep it down. (If you’ve ever seen the Newcastle episode of the cable TV show Booze Britain you might remember Grant describing it as “the most uncomfortable thing I’ve ever tasted in me life”, just before bringing it all back up.)

To say that our tastes aren’t catered for in Berlin would be a mahoosive understatement. The city is famously bad for Indian food, but you wouldn’t believe how bad until you’ve sampled it for itself. Wherever you go, everything tastes the same: bland, indistinct and barely identifiable. “What’s this supposed to be again? Do they pipe this sauce in from the currywurst place next door? And then water it down?”

Which is why we’ve been to Buddha Republic twice in less than a month. Coming from Bangalore (via Birmingham), owner Armand has brought with him authentic recipes and the art of cooking using a traditional tandoori oven. He also has interior design chops, having successfully achieved the Buddha Bar aesthetic he enthused about over complimentary mango shots. We’ll leave the gushing descriptions to EXBERLINER, who sensibly sampled the Maharaja mixed tandoori for two, and just say that the food stands up against anything we’ve tasted on Brick Lane or in Bradford. Well worth the trip out to Charlottenburg. Again and again and again…

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