Ohhhh Italy. You booted-shaped, pizza-making, sexy-man breeding, fashion designing paradise. You have graced us with many pleasures including Monica Bellucci and espresso. Leonardo Da Vinci. Versace. The Roman Empire. And pasta. Where would we be without pasta, for it has spawned restaurants the world over, infested pantries, and induced food comas even the best doctors can’t cure. Pasta, my friends, is what I’m loving Berlin for at the moment. Thankfully, you don’t need to fly to Italy to get the good stuff.
And the faves (so far) areeeee….
NUDELBUDE | Weichselstr. 64, Neukölln
You’ve probably walked by this place before. And you’ve probably not noticed it because its facade is somewhat, well, uninviting to put it nicely. Forget the warm nonna welcomes you might get in Tuscany, this is straight up all about the pasta, which is handmade on site. The menu is sorted by sauces (10-12 at least) and there are three different kinds of pasta you can choose from. I went for the prawn and cherry tomato sauce with linguini – fresh, delicious, generous and a whole lot more.
TOSATTI | Schliemannstr 14A, Prenzlauer Berg
These guys hand make a wide variety of pasta – which means you can pick it up and try your hand at making a topping yourself. Hey, you might learn something and save some dough too! They also have a few pasta dishes on the menu. It’s rare to see young guys doing what their grandmothers did so many years ago. Really, a beautiful sight to see.
NUDO | Lausitzer Platz 10, Kreuzberg
Every day, starting at 6:30pm, Nudo surprises its diners with a special 4-course dinner. Do you know what that means? The chef sources the best ingredients he can find on the day and creates a delicious feast, all for 28 euro and they cater to our vegetarian friends too.
DER GOLDENER HAHN | Pücklestrasse 20, Kreuzberg
There’s an air of confidence about a restaurant that has no fixed menu – it’s game, and high-five to people that say ciao to their control-freak-ness and let the chef decide. At Der Goldener Hahn, in the heart of Wrangelkiez, the boys in the back offer a simple, rustic and fresh menu. The dishes change daily and take into account the season’s best produce. We had the truffle mushroom ragu. Bloody delicious. Check out the wine list too – you’ll find an awesome selection of Italian wines from boutique wineries in Italy.
COTTO E CRUDO | Eberswalderstr. 33, Prenzlauer Berg
In contrast to old mate NudelBude, this place is an Italian stallion. Not decked out with Italian paraphernalia by any stretch but more fitted out with cabinetry and restaurant-y vibes. There’s a basic menu with a few basic pasta dishes like pasta with tomato sauce – I’d say they’re good for the kiddies – instead, get your eyeballs on the daily specials board, this is where you’ll find all the action. The gnocchi balls that looked a lot like baby lemons, with homemade tomato sugo, fresh basil and ricotta was fantastic, as was the lasagne and prawn with cherry tomato linguini (trending in this article!). Even though it is a bit pricier than the norm, it’s worth a visit. Book ahead.