From Ramen Burgers to Ice Cream Sandwiches: 3 Ways to Get International Comfort Food in Berlin
Berlin is Germany’s most ethnically and culturally diverse city, and expats searching for a taste of home have more options than ever. With singularly focused food carts and catering services, a wave of newcomers is bringing comforting tastes of their native countries to Germans and fellow foreigners. These three businesses are leading the way in the growth of Berlin’s international culinary options, and clearing up some confusion along the way.
For a Berlin twist on Korean cuisine with hints of Los Angeles, Toronto and Chicago, there’s Lauren Lee’s Fräulein Kimchi. Lee, who was born in Korea but grew up all over North America, taught cooking classes before opening the only place in Berlin to get kimchi tacos, ramen burgers, and maybe the most unlikely, yet Berlin-influenced, expat comfort food of them all: kimchi-käse-spätzle. Like Minch, she’s opening a permanent location soon, but until then you can find her cart and catering services at various locations around the city by checking in on her Facebook page.
Zwei Dicke Bären
When they made their debut last year, Cieran Rockwell and César Cotta—the duo behind Berlin’s only ice cream sandwich cart—were asked if the creamy stuff between their cookies was cheese. Since then, their confections, which run the gamut from traditional chocolate chip–vanilla sandwiches to the more adventurous bacon cookies with egg custard, have become a mainstay at weekly food events in Kreuzberg and Mitte. Nonetheless, the guys recently caved to lingering confusion over the classic American junk food, adding an illustrated flag to their cart that depicts just what exactly an ice cream sandwich is. Check their Facebook page for updates on where they’ll be stationed from week to week.
Matt Minch, an Irish expat who shares kitchen space with Rockwell and Cotta, began selling his twist on the British meat pie about a year ago. Right now British expats can find steak-and-kidney and wild mushroom–asparagus pies at Gestalten, a café and concept store on the roof of the Bikini Berlin hotel. But soon they’ll be able to sample Minch’s wares at his deli/meat pie shop, which is slated to open in two months. You can follow Hellogoodpie’s progress on Facebook and Twitter.