Open sesame! That is what the invitation to the Simsim opening party said, and it came in a cute small envelope filled with sesame seeds. Who doesn’t like a real printed invite and even better, one that is as cute as this?
The Levantine cuisine trend had come to wow us and to stay. Berlin is a melting pot of cultures and every time a new culture comes to stay, the Berlin cuisine transforms and gives place to the new influences.
Since a couple of years, Germany has been a refuge for people since the whole Syrian trouble got out of control, and this brought their culture and food and you can see some many new restaurants and places coming up like Simsim, Kreuzberger Himmel and Prism.
The Levantine kitchen is the traditional cuisine of the Levant, known in Arabic as the Bilad ash-Sham and Mashriq, which covers a large area of the Eastern Mediterranean.
We already knew many dishes like hummus and baba ganoush but some many delicious dishes like Muhamara Aleppo hasn’t been featured that much in gastronomical Berlin.
Simsim is a homey Levantine eatery serving authentic dishes, both traditional and modern, in a contemporary setting. Simsim draws inspiration from the regions rich and luscious cuisine along with its hospitable nature with dishes typifying the ancient Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese kitchens which date back multi-millennia. A key virtue of the Levant is its food and hospitality. At Simsim you can experience this culture the right way, through their food and ambiance. Simsim bridges the gap between authenticity and modernity; preserving ancient traditions while pursuing innovative techniques. Something you can see on their food and the beautifully designed space.
One of the most used sayings in the Levant says “the guest is always king“. What is not to love about that??
I arrived at Simsim 2 days prior their opening as I was already at their awesome opening a week before and I just wanted to share this with you guys (#notanAD) I met the owner Marwan that is part of a culinary family. His parents actually have a restaurant in Jordana where his brother works as well. So he isn’t a stranger on “the” restaurant life. Super babe Sophia was on her way to help me eating and enjoying this food.
We started our meal with a Turkish coffee first. It was a stronger version of a French press with a full aroma and taste of cardamon seeds.
Marwan told us their food is meant to be shared, hence their “tapas-like” menu, he said that with their food they aim to make patrons experience typical Palestinian, Lebanese and Syrian traditions, by epitomizing the essence of the region which is embedded in sociability and culture. The cuisines history stretches back to the cradle of civilization; inspired by a lot of cultures from the Turks to Greeks and to some extent the European colonialists, the cuisine nevertheless knows no borders.
Their goal here in Prenzlauer Berg is to enrich the guests and unify their spirits with theirs. They strive to employ modern adaptations to traditional methods and continue to synergize their food with the people... a very important thing to do in this ever-changing culinary Berlin.
We order a bunch of things, as the restaurant wasn’t officially open, we just went for cold servings like Arnabeet Mekle a fried cauliflower with cumin lemon and garlic, The Raheb salad: grilled eggplant slices tomato Paprika and pomegranate molasses, Muhammara Aleppo a hat pepper, and walnut spread pomegranate molasses cumin served with ka’ak bread, Wara’enab vine leaves stuffed with rice parsley onion and olive oil... And last but not least, their mouth-watering hummus.
Have you ever tried Levantine cusine? I am so happy this restaurant opened on my hood! and cannot wait to come by and try the whole menu... including the chicken liver! And to remember Johnny Quest: Sim Sim Salabim!
OMG! December starts tomorrow and I can't wait for you to see all the prizes I got for you guys. Every Saturday there will be a blog post showing you the brands that will be in the next advent's week.
All prizes are just for people over 18 years old and living in Berlin-Brandenburg.
Every morning. I will post a picture on Instagram with the prize of the "door" and how to be the winner of the day. I will post a video of the draw each day to show the fairness of the contest. So now here are the first-week brands (not in order):
RESTAURANT // BLEND BERLIN KITCHEN AND BAR
Berlin is known for its highly diverse population - primarily the Turkish, Eastern European and Eastern- Mediterranean nationalities are broadly represented. This is also reflected in Berlin’s culinary landscape with its many restaurants, street food stands and other food shops of this kind. The food style at BLEND is inspired by this and has many influences of the German, Turkish, Eastern-Mediterranean and Eastern -European cuisines.
The food concept at BLEND aims to embrace the "Berliner food culture" and is best described as a fun dining kitchen inspired by the (ethnic) cuisines and ingredients of Berlin. Dishes are served in a fun way and creatively with a certain twist given their use of ingredients, preparation method or way of serving. As much as possible, dishes are regionally sourced and in season.
BLEND Berlin Kitchen & Bar
Budapester Straße 25, 10787 BERLIN – GERMANY
Telephone: +49 30 2696 2696
RESTAURANT // JOLESCH
Located in the middle of trendy Kreuzberg, but away from the hustle and bustle, the restaurant Jolesch offers you since nearly 25 years delicious Austrian cuisine in a cozy and authentic atmosphere. Enjoy traditional alpine dishes like Wiener Schnitzel (as well vegetarian and gluten-free option), Tafelspitz, and Kaiserschmarrn as well as modern creations of chef Tobias Janzen.
Muskauer Str.1, 10997 Berlin
Telephone: +49 30 - 612 35 81
ICE CREAM CAFÉ // PAUL MÖHRING
Homemade soft serve ice cream - with a pinch of madness. You can build your own creation with a wide variety of toppings such as olive oil & sea salt or choose from the range of specials they offer such as "The Butcher": Creamy vanilla ice cream, maple glazed bacon, whiskey sauce. There are also a couple of more traditional options if you prefer more traditional flavor combinations.
Paul Möhring also offers great coffee, perfectly poured, with beans from Bonanza Coffee.
During winter Paul Möhring also serves homemade cakes and brioches which you can garnish with their toppings. They also offer hot apple strudel or nice little chocolate lava cakes. When it's freezing cold outside you may also want to warm yourself with hot buttered rum, Glühwein or cardamom hot chocolate.
Paul Möhring - Tradition & Wahnsinn
Oranienburger Str. 84, 10178 Berlin
DRINKS // BULMERS CIDER
Made with apples and tradition. Bulmers cider is a refreshing alcoholic beverage made with apples and tradition. That’s because, in Hereford England where Bulmers is made, apples have a long and tasteful history. For more than 130 years the H.P. Bulmers Ltd. has been producing premium ciders and exporting it – for the world to enjoy.
All these years later, the entrepreneurial spirit lives on through a new generation of apple growers, sourcing only the highest quality apples – making every Bulmers an original.
COFFEE SHOP // %ARABICA
%Arabica Coffee is one of the newest coffee spots in Berlin. You can find this hidden gem hiding in a backyard in Kreuzberg. The first thing you notice is the minimalist interior, a mix of Japanese simplicity and that follows as well the iconic Braun designer, Dieter Ram. Japan meets Germany.
In the middle of the store, it is a big open kitchen surrounded by glass, like an aquarium. And that kitchen is run by Tyler. Tylers has worked in some awesome places I had the honor to visit, like Noma, Momofuku Milk Bar and Torissi (that is closed now but it is a spot everyone still talks about).
In addition to that resume, he makes all handmade fresh pasta and uses all local ingredients who he visits regularly for sourcing. His mindset is sustainable and all those dishes he prepares are carefully sourced and prepared simply to bring the power of ingredients out on to our pallets.
% Arabica Berlin Kreuzberg
Reichenberger Str. 36, 10999 Berlin
Telephone: +49 1515 9899294
BREWERY // BRLO
BRLO BRWHOUSE is a Brewery, Restaurant, Bar, Beer garden, and above all the home of BRLO and the Berlin craft beer movement. They have such an affinity with this city that their roots are apparent in their very name. BRLO is the old Slavic origin of the name Berlin (Hard to pronounce until you’ve had a few).
With the BRLO BRWHOUSE they created a Craft beer playground, in the heart of Berlin. Here they have not only realized their vision to provide contemporary brewhouse gastronomy, but also a venue which caters to beer culture, the culinary arts, crazy ideas, and one of a kind individuals.
A unique concept deserves a unique venue. It is not only their offering which is one of a kind but also the venue in which it all takes place. The complete structure is composed of 38 up-cycled shipping containers. The modular nature of the structure means it can be quickly disassembled and reconstructed anywhere in the world. As they only have this site for a few short years they will once again be in search of a new home for their BRWHOUSE. This one of a kind concept and structure is the brainchild of world-renowned architects GRAFT.
Schöneberger Straße 16, 10963 Berlin
Telephone: +49 30 55577606
VEGAN CAFÉ // ATAYA CAFFEE
Ataya is probably the best hidden vegan pearl in Prenzlauer Berg. It lays in the middle of a very residential neighborhood and probably if you have been there it's because someone told you about it or you googled for the best vegan in town.
What is makes this place so special is the kind of cuisine they serve. The owners come from Senegal and Sardinia, making every plate a fusion dream. Their ingredients are all organic, vegan and they don't use plastic at all. Even they don't use paper cups for coffee-to-go.
Ataya in Africa is a place where the community gathers to talk, eat and drink tea. From men to women and even children. They drink tea together and solve problems while grabbing a bite as well. And you can feel this when you go inside their cozy café.
Zelterstraße 6, 10439 Berlin
Telephone: +49 30 33021041
I am Andrea, or as my friends call me, Jinx. I am a foodie living in Berlin, eating my way through life. Here are my recipes, cooking events, dining experiences and more...