Photo by Francesca Torricelli
No matter your diet, Berlin has a restaurant for you, and since March, we can add small Schöneberg deli Dabbawalla to the handful of places catering to ayurvedic eaters. Owners Dennis Dührkoop and Jessika Wildner specialise in Indian-inflected vegetarian and vegan dishes made according to the Hindu-based medicine system, which is focused on maintaining balance inside and outside the body.
Inside, it’s simply furnished with white wooden chairs and tables and a homely kitchen set-up behind the counter. Chickpeas, lentils, spices and ayurvedic teas from tea brand Pukka line the shelves, ready to be bought by curious costumers willing to give ayurvedic cuisine a try at home. If you want to eat in, ordering is simple: just get the Ayurvedic Thali (€7.90/large, €5.90/small), a plate of five components changing on a daily basis, all seasonal.
No matter what, you’ll get some kind of carbohydrate, a vegetable dish, a protein and a raw component, plus chutney to “open your stomach”. In our case, this translated to basmati and wild rice, sauteéd green beans seasoned with parsley and thyme, yellow lentil dal and a green salad. Lastly, three condiments – bell pepper and pineapple chutneys and yogurt-herb raita (vegans can opt for basil pesto).
The components are somewhat basic, but combined in one plate, it somehow just works – the fact that it’s all freshly made definitely helps. The pineapple chutney in particular gave this simple meal a sweet-spicy boost – the perfect kicker to a delicious and healthy lunch that left us feeling great for the rest of the day.