Best stinkin' pizza outside of Italy . . . or Chicago.
I go here, or order from here, every time I'm in Berlin. My brother lives, quite literally, right around the corner. We've only eaten in once, but it was quite the time.
The interior is pretty cool with exposed brick and much art of various revolutionary organizations, e.g., Che Guevara. Wait staff are great, friendly, native Italian speakers, and especially good with kids (my brother has two and they can be quite the handful). Stereotypical red-and-white-checked table clothes, candle on the table. It can be noisy.
The crusts are uniformly thin and crispy (if you ask for it that way). The sauce is absolutely phenomenal: Piquant, sweet, and SO fresh, with just a hint of garlic. They may actually make the best tomato sauce I've ever had on a pizza.
The menu is lengthy, but my two favorites are the pie with bresaola and fresh basil and the other with potatoes and rosemary. I can't say enough good things about their food.
It can be crowded, very, so it pays to come early. And if you can't eat in, just order it to go.
Again, I make it a point to come here every time I'm in town. It's worth the 8 hour flight.
The atmosphere is really nice when you sit there and have a little chat with your friends, the waiters should definitely work on their service skills.
The prices are ok, the food is ok, the pizza was good (and I don't even like pizza) but I was a bit upset from my pasta which looked like sth I could easily make home, and stayed hungry afterwards.
I am so upset, I felt like having their chocolate mousse today. I phoned to ask if they had it today, they said yes. I travelled the hour from Schöneberg and upon ordering it he said, we don't sell desserts on their own, they have to be accompanied with food. He started to tell me he's the boss but that doesn't matter, this idiotic policy is the problem.
Authentic northern-Italian home-cooking style food at decently good prices.
I come here mostly because my roommate who is from Milan vouches for it's authenticity. What's important to note about most restaurants you go to (especially the asian ones) are that the menu has all been germanified.
Here it actually tastes like Italian food. Your pizzas will be on point, and this past weekend I ordered a pasta and was a bit shocked at how big my portion was. (of course this will vary depending on which pasta you order). The pasta is quite good.
I haven't been to the other locations, but if you want a very low key casual environment and good food, then come here. It's not fancy, not overdone, not touristy, not really romantic- it's a good hang out place for people from all over.
Plus.. grappa or limoncello at the end of your meal ;)
If u wanna be treated like shit, go there. If u wanna eat an overpriced pizza go there. If none of the above fit go somewhere else and enjoy ur stay in Berlin. :)
On my first night in Berlin, I ate at II Ritrovo-Cucina Casalinga Popolare. It does not sound very typical German, does it ? ;)
One star for the place : One you get in front of the place, you have to climb some stairs to reach the terrace. There is a little green area, not to call it a garden, but children enjoy playing there. The terrace is really big and every inch of it is covered in tables and chairs. Then you reach the restaurant.
One star for the people : This is a very special kind of waiters we are talking about. There are all italians and wear very punky outfits. They also have piercings, tattooes and terrific hairstyles. It seems that this is a requisit to be employed here ! On top of that they are very nice and fast.
One star for the food : I took a four seasons pizza. First of all it was huge ! In Germany, whatever you order, you know that it will be worth your money sizewise. Then, it was delicious ! I highly recommend this one.
One star for the style : It is a very friendly restaurant and you feel like staying forever just enjoying the food and relaxing.
Anything else to add ? I did not rate a five star here because I have just tasted one pizza. So that means I will have to come back before the end of my stay. If you are around before the 28th August 2011, we can even go together XD
Best pizza place in the neighborhood (Friedrichshain).
I feel that the best one of these restaurants is the one is XBerg. I have always had mixed experiences here. I don't like the decor personally and its really really hot on the side of the restaurant with the kitchen, which can get uncomfortable. The pizza is ok, I guess it really depends on what you get. Being a vegetarian, I have had a pretty decent experience. You can really tell that this is a "real" Italian joint. Plus, the servings are huge. I usually come here with friends who are picky eaters. It's pizza, its hard not to like, and everyone is happy-- even the vegans.
I wouldn't recommend the pasta. Although the sauces are good, the pasta is straight from the box as another commentator mentioned-- you might as well eat at home.
For desert I really enjoy a limoncello and panna cotta. mmmm...
Il Ritrovo-Cucina Casalinga Popolare serves some of the best pizzas in Berlin. It is a rowdy, loud and hectic place, run by some hilarious and quirky Italians. It's the best place to grab a pizza with friends.
1. The Food
Excellent pizzas. Huge. Thin, chewy crusts with big bubbles. Tomato sauce is awesome, tangy and sweet that perfectly melts together with the fresh and creamy mozzarella on top. They have lots of toppings, but my faves are the Pizza Diavola (spicy salami, olives and sweet onions) and Prataiola (divine combination of mushrooms, heaps of arugula, parmesan and delicious prosciutto). Wine is a choice of a decent red or white. Besides pizza, they also have weekly menus of decent appies and entrees, and desserts.
2. The Staff
Italian. Nice, quick and busy. Some find them rude, but they're just being their normal Italian self. Just don't be obnoxious and order a pizza that is not on the menu.
3. The atmosphere
A local hang-out popular with the under 35 crowd. Loud, chaotic, yellow walls signed by alternative/punk bands. Superbusy during peak hours. Try to grab a spot on one of the beer benches if the tables are overflowing.
4. The damage
Most pizzas are 6- 9 euros. Drinks are 2-8 euros.
5. Useful tidbits
Come early or late or expect to wait.
Update: Quality of the pizza varies we've been several times and been disappointed with the dough and crust not the same as the original in Xberg
Great pizzas for sure. I think it's nicer to order for take away because the place is so noisy and cramped. I feel that no matter where I sit, I'm blocking someone's way.
They're really arrogant sometimes, but I think it's because they're stressed, warm and have to run back and fourth with guests all over the place. But it's cool. You can get a horse meat pizza here. A lot of people say it's the best pizza in Berlin. I know another place close by which is just as good!
Very good Italian restaurant. It seems quite original, so don't expect any fancy bits. It's focused on good food and wine, without making a fuzz about it.
The pizza is fantasic (some even with - typically Italian - with horse meat), but also the pasta dishes, starters, and desserts are very tasty.
Prices are affordable, not the cheapest pizza place, but again, the quality beats most places by far.
The place is usually really crowded, so you can't be garantueed to get a table immediatly, especially when you are more than a few. I like the cozy and basic atmosphere, but since it is so full, the waiters won't be super alert and always right away at your table.
It's hard not to have a love-hate relationship with Il Ritrovo. The pizzas are usually on point and overall this is the best pizza place in Friedrichshain. My favorite was the Pizza Pratiola, with arugula, parma ham, and parmesan shavings. The crust is thin and crispy and the sauce is delicious.
The decor is sort of anarchy-themed and the Italian cooks and waitstaff fit right into the Boxenhagener Platz scene in terms of their look. The waitresses are more service-oriented than the waiters. One waiter in particular (guy with a trimmed beard) always seemed overwhelmed by his job. On weekends you will likely not be able to walk in without a reservation. Nearly all of the wait staff is child-friendly and they will give your kid a chupa-chup lollipop if asked nicely.
The big con is the service, which on average could be described as Berlin-typical, aka waaaay laid-back. Because I lived just a block away I would usually get my order to-go, but on the occasions where I sat down in the restaurant the experience was mixed.
My advice- come with plenty of time on your hands for a meal at a leisurely pace, especially during the weekends and summer months. However the pizza is unique and delicious and well worth the wait. The pasta is just ok- their pasta is not made fresh and you can see boxes and boxes of Barilla stored in their kitchen.
Go when it's not overcrowded (e.g. for a late lunch) and you will have one of the bests pizza's you've ever had. The ingredients are all really top notch: very good mozzarella, parmesan, tomato sauce, bresaola, (spicy) salami, pepperoni, etc. And very important the bread is delicious & crispy! The Italian crew has always been very friendly to us, so no complaints there, although I heard different stories as well.
The place looks pretty cool, it's a nice orchestrated mess and oozes atmosphere. Berlin really meets Italy in here. Our favorite pizza, without a doubt, is the incredible (yes, it's a pizza with walnuts and yes it's fantastic!) Next to the pizza we also like to order the always changing things on the daily menu, like eggplant with good olive oil, herbs and garlic, or a zucchini lasagne. House-wines are nothing special, but certainly not bad and easy to drink.
If you don't want to drink alcohol, the biological apfelschorle (apple juice with mineral water and bubbles) is very nice and also available in a big bottle. Or have an alcohol fee whitebeer (hefeweise) excellent! I'm in doubt whether I should give 4 or 5 stars thing is, it's really a fantastic place, so good that it can be really overcrowded, and then the service and waiting times can become long. But they can hardly help that, can they?
I'll stick to 5 stars for now just make sure you make a reservation or take my advice and go there for a late lunch or early dinner.
The pasta and the service is just ok. But that doesn't really matter since the pizza will make forget any complaints you might have about this place. When you get a perfect pizza with good cutleries I don't think anything else matters. But maybe that's just me :)
One of the best pizzas in Berlin and I have been to some (it is the sister-restaurant of Due Forni in P'berg which has almost the same menu).
Table reservations during the weekend is a must, expect waiting time regardless.
No English menu (only Italian/German), but you'll manage even some of the waiters do not speak German.
Regarding the service (or the Italian version of service): Well, for them [the staff] you basically a disturbance (but hey, they have great pizza, so suck it).
Awesome pizza! Some of the best I've had (outside of Naples, of course... duh). If you can, do take away, as the service is hit or miss (especially when they are packed).
easily the best pizza i've had in Berlin. Thin crust, chunky rustic-style toppings, and good ingredients - defintately worth the extra euro or two price-wise from the other local pizza places. Also, it was nice that the bill was accompanied with an offer of a complementary lemoncello or grappa. I opted for the grappa which was a healthy sized measure and left me leaving the premises in a happy haze.
ok, another great Italian. definitely the best pizza in berlin, sometimes they have lasagna too. can't really say much bout the service, coz im tattooing guys from there, so i always getting the best one, never heard anyone complaining, though..
this is the friedrichshain branch of the famous Il Casolare in Kreuzberg. it's exactly the same, really. good pizza at higher-than-average prices. pasta wasn't anything special, but the salads are huge and quite good. i haven't found much better outside of italy.
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