Too overwhelmed to cook this season? Get in the spirit with six festive deliveries, as food editor Jane Silver rounds up the best Berlin has to offer.
Jolesch, Kreuzberg’s Austrian institution, had just unveiled a slew of new meatless dishes pre- November lockdown (tempeh schnitzel, anyone?), and its new Christmas offering is very much in line with that. For €18, you get a whole roasted celery root lacquered in a salted caramel sauce, sprinkled with nuts and barberries, plus kale and red cabbage on the side (serves one). While the rest of the Jolesch menu is up on Lieferando and Wolt, this one’s only available via their own in-house delivery service (jolesch-box.de), as is their concession to poultry lovers: a whole roast Brandenburg goose with red cabbage, kale, red currant sauce and potato Klöße (€120 serves four, order four days in advance).
For nostalgic ex-ravers
Cookies, the club turned dining haven for Berliners lucky enough to’ve cashed in on the nightlife scene pre-Corona, is delivering a luxe four-course dinner. Prepared by the Cookies Events team, on the menu is: half an organic free-range duck (or a portobello mushroom Wellington), chestnut cream soup, pumpkin puree, glazed veggies and red cabbage salad, with a marzipan baked apple for dessert and some bourbon-spiked Christmas punch on the side. It’s €69 a person, orderable three days in advance before December 23.
With its veggie-forward, fusion-happy regular menu, you wouldn’t think brewhouse Brlo would be getting on the Christmas duck train, but here we are. €199 gets you a free-range roasted Brandenburg bird with sauerkraut, red cabbage and potato-nut butter Klöße, plus truffled salsify soup to start with and pecan pie for dessert. Not to mention the booze: mulled beer as an aperitif, and a six-pack of Brlo ale (to be split at the four diners’ discretion). Extra points for going as plastic-free as possible; the meal comes in biodegradable boxes and glass jars.
For Michelin fans
There’s a reason fancy-pants restaurants like Cell and Savu fell victim to Corona: the fine dining experience just can’t be recreated at home. Even if you manage to reheat the food right, does it really taste the same plated on your IKEA kitchenware and consumed with a side of Netflix? Still, this is a special occasion we’re talking about, so if you and three of your loved ones have €229 to spare, by all means go for the two-star Horváth this year. Not only do you get a crispy par-cooked Pomeranian duck, parsley root cream soup and Kaiserschmarrn for dessert, you get a video where chef Sebastian Frank personally instructs you how to put the whole thing together. Get it delivered anytime until December 27.
A constant presence on the food scene for 15-plus years now, American chef Suzy Fracassa – of diner Hazelwood, catering company Fortuna’s Table and now Neukölln take-out shop Stella – specialises in the kind of hearty, homey dishes that t the holidays like a hand in a warm woollen mitten. After an exceptionally busy Thanksgiving, she’s doing Christmas buffet-style, with customisable “upscale casual” three-course menus deliverable hot or cold to your door. Expect holiday classics such as goose (sliced breast with a cherry-Port sauce) or lamb (slow-roasted with ginger and pomegranate), as well as many meat-free options ranging from mushroom-walnut loaf to butternut-squash baked risotto. Sides will spoil you for choices (maple-caramelised pumpkin wedges, truffled mash!) and you’ll be faced with a desert dilemma: spiced apple torte (with rum butter!) or triple chocolate pudding with espresso mascarpone? Prices range from €34-42 plus delivery costs; there’s a two-person minimum per order.
Nobody’s delivering latkes as far as we know (pro tip: if you can’t be bothered to grate your own potatoes, Rewe’s frozen Kartoffelpuffer are the next best thing), but Beba, the Martin-Gropius-Bau’s Jewish-Israeli café, is offering suitably festive spreads. A hunk of braided challah and zingy zhug and harissa dips accompany mezze like hummus and labneh, mains from Sephardic eggplant stew to lemon za’atar salmon and sides such as couscous and smoked wheat with parsley. €100 is enough to cover a table for four, homemade lemonade included.