Restaurant Review – Sauvage Prenzlauer Berg

Gluten Free Sauvage

I am sometimes surprised by how long I’ve been doing this blog, what seems to be a year or two in my head quickly turns into 3 or 4 when I check in with reality, must be the old age creeping up.  The good side of all this time passing by though, is that I get to see the truly good Gluten Free places here thrive and grow.  A little around 3 of those short seeming years ago I reviewed Sauvage in Neuköln, expressing my surprise that they were actually gluten free.  At the time I think the owners were also a little surprised to find out they were the only completely gluten free restaurant in the whole city, hence why back then, they thought it not important to mention it on their website.  Thankfully for us, 3 years later, the restaurant is a rather huge success in both the ‘regular person’ and Paleo diet world, meaning the gluten afflicted world gets to enjoy some good high end cuisine.  Imagine my joy then, when they opened a second location in Prenzlauer Berg.  Plus, they’ve embraced their gluten free-ness with abandon and gluten free icons on their website.  Happiness.

Glutenfrei Sauvage

Another surprise is the benefits that doing this website occasionally affords me, the odd sample of products from Schär and such or the odd offer of a free slice of cake.  This time however, I was invited for a complimentary meal at Sauvage.  Normally, I would be worried this would affect the outcome of my review and I would not partake.  Fortunately though, having been there a few times over the years, I knew the food at Sauvage would be rather good.

First off, the decor.  I am a big fan of the cave/rustic theme of the Neuköln restaurant and this new place does not disappoint.

glutenfrei sauvage inside

I do so love the twiggy lamp/light things on the ceiling.  Earth and Warmth is definitely the theme.

The second thing I noticed on my wander around is that the restaurant also has a mini shop and just look at what they are selling!

Gluten Free Bread Sauvage

Paleo Gluten Free bread!  Now, yes, you may see that it costs €6.80 and think to yourself “oh my, that is a little steep” and you would be right.  It is expensive.  But there is one thing that is always worth paying for.  Expertise, quality and especially with gluten free products, taste.  So, I think you can guess my opinion of this bread, but I’m going to make you wait a little for me to say it.  First it’s time for the meal.

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The initial mini-starter was this.  I’m not 100% sure exactly what it was, I was revelling in the fact that I did not have to ask what all of the ingredients in the dish were and forgot to inquire.  But it was rather delicious indeed.

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Then came the cocktails.  Not that most cocktails have gluten in them, or that my drink order really belongs in a gluten free review, but they look good and they tasted great.  So that means I get to show them to you.

Glutenfrei starter Sauvage

Beef with nuts and berries in a small crumbly tarte base.  It was absolutely amazing, really, amazing.  Shortly after, with a satisfied grin still on my face, the main meals arrived.

I had myself duck with ‘pan fried salsify, braised red cabbage and quince, turmeric quince purée and orange jus’.  Yes, it was every bit as delicious as that sounds, even if I don’t know what some of those things may be.

glutenfrei essen sauvage

My partner had ‘Lamb carré with a pistachio-thyme crust, pan-fried brussel sprouts, a sunchoke sun-dried tomato creme, and cumin jus’.  Again, just ridiculous.

Gluten Free Meal Sauvage

To add to this feast, some gluten free bread was also placed on our table.  Leaving me with a giant nightmare of what to eat first.

Gluten Free Bread Sauvage

The bread of course!  It was amazing.  By far the best gluten free bread I’ve had in Berlin.  Well, maybe not for a sandwich, this is the type of bread you eat on it’s own with a little something spread on top.  It’s not to be used as a container for other tasty things, it is the tasty thing.  The flavours in the bread, especially the darker of the two, were a welcome refresh from the blandness of my bread based life here.  You should definitely buy a loaf to take away with you.

Now, you may be thinking to yourself, ‘my that is a lot of food, I bet you were giddy, very full and definitely satisfied without a chance of eating anything more’, and you’d be right.  I was all those things, especially full.  But, when you are in a restaurant where you can eat absolutely everything on the menu, you go a little crazy.  So a short while later, this arrived.

Gluten Free Dessert Sauvage

A small pumpkin tarte.  The contents were delicious, and here is where my only complaint of the whole meal is.  The crust was a little tough to get through, but ultimately worth the effort.

After the meal, as I wobbled out towards the door, this lovely sign caught my attention.

Gluten Free Brunch Sauvage

Check that, a completely gluten free brunch that is on every sunday!!

In conclusion, Sauvage continues to be THE best Gluten Free food and experience you can have in Berlin.  There simply are no other completely gluten free restaurants to start with, combine this with good food and you need to be there now.  But, stop, put down your coat and shoes, before you do go there is one downside.  The place is rather expensive, the main meals can reach over €30 each.  All this means though is that it is not a place to visit every week to have an evening meal, it’s a special place to visit and pretend you live in a world where you can eat whatever you want.  It is worth every penny that you spend there.

glutenfrei sauvage antlers

 

Sauvage – Prenzlauer Berg
Winsstrasse 30
10405 Berlin
030 38100025
Website
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Cafe Review – Cafe Vux – Take 2

gluten free cafe vux

Some time ago (3 years) I reviewed the original Cafe Vux on Richardstraße.  Back in those days I was just simply amazed that there was a cafe in Berlin which stocked gluten free cakes on a permanent basis!  Thankfully the gluten free life in Berlin is not so grim anymore.  Due to this though, there have been far more local gluten free cafes to visit and I had not made it down to the new Cafe Vux location (or even known about it for some time).  I remedied this not so long ago (well, a few months ago, but who’s counting).  First impressions, the new location on Wipperstraße is not quite as nice as the previous one.

glutenfrei cafe vux

I mean, it’s not terrible but the last place had a more homely, smaller quaint charm to it.  The new place does not feel too different to any other cafe in Berlin.  Which is not fault of theirs really, they just had set a higher bar in their last location.

gluten free cafe vux inside

The other downside is that they do not mark which of their cakes are gluten free and which are not.  They’re all just mixed in the display case and you have to rely on the member of staff knowing which is which.  A very bad practice in my experience unless you are very good at training all of your staff to the same level (most places are not).  Again, this was ok a few years ago when glutenfrei was a rarity, these days, it’s a little careless.

glutenfrei cheese cake cafe vux

I plumped for this lime and coconut cheesecake, as a combination it sounded rather good.

gluten free cheese cake cafe vux

A couple of minutes later and I had this.  Turns out I was correct and it was pretty damn good, nice and rich and tasty.  The base was a little thin and soggy, but it is gluten free, so what can you do.

In conclusion, if you live nearby or are passing, I’d pop in for a visit.  But with the vast wealth of other gluten free cafe’s in Berlin these days and the lack of labelling, there’s nothing here special enough to recommended it as a must.

glutenfrei cafe vux inside

Cafe Vux
Wipperstraße 14
12055 Berlin
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Product Review – Schär Meisterbäckers Vital Frischbrot

I used to spend a lot of time on this blog complaining about the terrible state of gluten free bread here in Germany.  To be fair, when I started back in 2010, the glutenfrei bread here was pretty abysmal.  Tasteless bricks of compressed sand for the most part.  Fortunately for us, all those German manufacturers were not sitting around resting on their laurels, they were busy tinkering and experimenting, gradually providing us with better and better bread.  The latest I’ve tested is the Schär Meisterbäckers Vital Frischbrot, a bit of a mouthful to type so, if I refer to it again, I’ll call it Vital Brot.

schaer vital gluten free bread

The packaging is much the same as all of the other Schär fresh breads, a giant balloon holding a soft squishy loaf.

schaer vital glutenfrei brot

Inside you get the usual plastic tray containing the gluten free goodies.  The vital brot (yay, i referred to it by name again) is pretty good by my standards.  There’s a good flavour to it, nothing too strong, just about right.  The texture is great too, not too crumbly and the little seeds add some bite.

In conclusion, I’d recommend it, I think it’s my favourite of the frischbrot from Schär.

The Berlin Gluten Free Dining Club

It can be a lonely existence living gluten free. Your friends look at you like you’re being a fussy eater and shun you from dinner dates, partners huff in exasperation at having to travel 40 minutes to eat in a particular gluten free place and restaurant staff look at you like you’re a raving maniac when you ask if food has gluten or any kind of flour in it.  Add to this living in a country where most people have not even heard of Gluten, plus a country where you may not even speak the same language and you’ll be limited to talking to the wall about the difficulties of gluten free eating (or, in those more positive moments, bragging about how ‘almost like real cake’ that slice you just ate was).

Fortunately for us, a nice friendly Gluten Free American living here in Berlin has started a meetup group!  Happy days!  The idea is to visit the gluten free friendly places in Berlin, dine, chat, make friends and generally revel in the joyful feeling that everybody there understands your pain.  The first meetup is at the end of February at Cielo di Berlino.  There are limited places so sign up quickly!

Berlin Gluten Free Dining Meetup Group

Cielo di Berlino Meetup Event

Product Review – Gluten Free from mymuesli.com

glutenfrei mymeusli

One of the joys of running this blog is that I am occasionally invited to product launches and events, there’s something about free food that just makes it taste better.  Recently mymeusli.com invited me to partake in an open day at their offices to sample their gluten free muesli options, great!  After some introductions and other niceties I noticed a rather large selection of tubes, all containing muesli goodness.  I was definitely being optimistic and hoping that they would be mostly gluten free.

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Unfortunately, this was not the case.  Not really their fault, but mine.  I always rate the importance of a company providing Gluten Free products in line with the importance I place upon eating said Gluten Free products.  If only the world agreed.  They do, however, have a couple of tubes of glutenfrei goodness, helpfully coloured in such a way that they stand out from the rest of the line.

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The two options are berries and chocolate, the two best additions to any breakfast in my opinion.  The muesli itself is rather good, much better than the dusty offerings from Verival, Herz or Hammermühle.  It is less prone to crumbling and has a little more flavour to it.

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All in all, I’d recommend buying some.

Unfortunately mymuesli were not able to provide a list of places you could buy the Gluten Free tubes and so far I have only seen them for sale in my local Rewe.  So, I’d keep an eye out for them, but it may be best to order online.

Website - They can be a little hard to find on the site, but there is a link at the very bottom of the page.

October 2013 Update

Had a few tips on new Gluten Free places that have opened up or changed here in Berlin :

  • Herr Nilson Godis – They have a new shop in Prenzlauer Berg serving their gluten free Swedish pick and pix.  If you haven’t visited yet, you should definitely go, Stargarder Straße 58, 10437 Berlin.
  • Chüechliwirtschaft – Had a tip that they offer gluten free cakes, their website mentions that they have Gluten and Lactose free fruit tarts.
  • Dai Ragazzi - They offer Gluten and Lactose free pasta dishes along with Gluten Free almond cookies and other desserts.
  • Juki – They have Gluten Free soy sauce and are able to accommodate Gluten Free diners.
  • Princess Cheesecake – Gluten Free cake is usually available, made with fresh oranges and an almond meringue base.
  • District Mot – Had a tip that they can serve gluten free food and have gluten free cake.  Although I’ve been unable to verify this with them and there is no mention of them offering anything gluten free on their menu/website.
  • Wo der Bär den Honig holt – Gluten Free carrot cake.
  • Nigi Berlin – Gluten and Lactose Free Onigiri, available at multiple locations around Berlin.
  • Sfizy Veg – Had a tip that they offer Gluten Free pasta and that you can pre-order Gluten Free pizza.  Although I’ve been unable to verify this with them and there is no mention of them offering anything gluten free on their menu/website.
  • Victoria – They have gluten free cakes available, chocolate, almond and orange hazelnut caramel.
  • Waterlily – They can make some of their dishes gluten free.  The dishes available is not listed on their menu.

Restaurant Review – Creperie Bretonne

Gluten Free Creperie Bretonne

As much as I love eating gluten free cakes and sweet treats here in Berlin, it is nice to be able to go out and have a proper sit down meal now and again.  Normally, doing this involves a pizza or such, but one evening I was in the mood for something a teeny bit different so I plumped for a french Gallette at Creperie Bretonne.

glutenfrei Creperie Bretonne Menu

The first thing that struck me is the general French-ness of the place.  But seeing as it is a French place this a welcome feature.

Gluten Free Creperie Bretonne Menu

Perusing the menu it is nice to see that they have quite a wide selection of choices for those of us gluten afflicted.  I plumped for a Juliette, cheese, ham and pear with walnuts.  My favourite combination, meat, cheese and fruit.

Whilst waiting for my delicious sounding dish to arrive, I noticed this a little further into the menu.

glutenfrei Creperie Bretonne Menu

Cider!  The gloriously gluten free drink that is not beer, but definitely close enough.

The only downside was that it arrived in the smallest serving I have ever seen for an alcoholic beverage, a teacup.

Gluten Free Galette Creperie Bretonne

Thankfully though, the Galette was rather good indeed (it was much bigger than it actually looks in this picture, damn perspective).

All in all I was quite pleased with Creperie Bretonne, nothing too amazing, special or exciting, just a good place to go and enjoy a little food.  Which is definitely not a bad thing, how I wish there were more of them out there.

Creperie Bretonne
Reichenberger Straße 30
10999 Berlin
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