Berlin’s Jewish history is very troubled. Sights all over town remind locals and visitors alike of the horrible events that took place in this city about 80 years ago. Nowadays, all religions live together harmonically. The Jewish Museum and Synagogue are very popular places and kosher food is available freely.
This is not granted, as a variety of rules need to be followed in order to prepare kosher food. Firstly, pork is considered “forbidden” and will not be used in kosher cuisine, same as blood. Furthermore, dairy and meat are to kept strictly apart: not only will they never appear in the same dish, but it is crucial to make sure that kitchen utensils that have once touched meat will never touch dairy products, and vice versa. Finally, there are special techniques to be followed during the preparation and especially during the slaughtering of animals.
But where to go for good and authentic kosher food? Here are some suggestions.
Located centrally near Kurfürstendamm, Bleibergs offers kosher food that, in most cases, is also vegan and vegetarian. The preparation is surveyed by a rabbi, so you can be sure everything is done correctly. Apart from the savoury dishes, Bleibergs offers coffee and baked goods as well – find out more here.
If you are seeking for a lot of variety on the menu, try Feinberg’s, who serve Israeli dishes like chickpeas as well as European classics, like a mixed salad with a feta cheese topping. They also make sure to use kosher slaughtering methods and, upon request, offer kosher chicken as well. Visit the website for more.
A very special place offers Mediterranean and Israeli specialties and has a Kashruth certificate from Chabad Lubawitsch Berlin, Rabbi Yehuda Teichtal: Milo. This places holds on to Jewish heritage and traditions, including serving fresh Challah every Friday so you won’t miss out on anything during Shabbat. Unlike many other kosher restaurants, they offer meaty dishes too. Find out more about their menu here.
If you’re after a quick bite or a small snack, make sure you visit Kädtler. This kosher-certified bakery in Prenzlauer Berg has been around since 1935 – through the troubled times of Berlin’s history. How did they manage? Actually, neither the bakery nor the family that it belongs to have any Jewish heritage, but about twelve years ago, the Jewish community asked them to produce kosher goods for them – and they happily jumped at the chance to try it. As a matter of fact, it’s the only bakery in Berlin that strictly follows kosher rules, to the point that it has a rabbi come to their kitchen every night to switch on the oven! Unlike many other bakeries these days, they bake everything freshly on site. Find out more about the history of the place here.
To be honest, the variety of kosher locations is not as vast as that of vegan or Vietnamese restaurants. However, it is growing and will hopefully help the city put the past behind forever.