One of the first upscale restaurants to grace Prenzlauer Berg’s leafy Kollwitzplatz square, Gugelhof has hosted some pretty A-list diners since it opened in the mid 1990s (including former heads of state Bill Clinton and Gerhard Schroeder). But the ambience here is far from jet-set stuffy—in fact, the rustic, plank-floored, and warmly lit dining room feels distinctly unpretentious. The fine Alsatian cuisine comes in generous portions, too—no artfully arranged mini plates here that leave you hungry a half-hour later. The breakfast-lunch menu (served every on weekends and holidays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.) includes an excellent tarte flambée (a pizza-like Alsatian specialty topped with chèvre, new potatoes, olives, and tomatoes); though the dinner menu changes daily, dishes are hearty and seasonal—think herb-crusted noisette of lamb with mashed potatoes and creamed chanterelles.
Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.