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  • Top Chef: Dennis Dührkoop of Dabbawalla


Top Chef: Dennis Dührkoop of Dabbawalla

Twice a month, we shine a spotlight on our favourite chefs in the city. This time round it's one of the minds behind ayurvedic Schöneberg lunch spot Dabbawalla

Dennis Dührkoop cooks vegan/vegetarian/ayurvedic “soul food” for lunch at Schöneberg deli Dabbawalla. Originally from Heidelberg, he was inspired by his grandmother and the Indian ayurveda principle to create dishes like his coconut-vegetable bowl, leek cream soup, vegan pesto, chutneys and more, sans milk and with a focus on balance and bodily well-being.

The food trend you hate the most?

I find almost all food trends interesting; they come and go but leave different perspectives which can sometimes inspire. My vegan dessert “Chia Dream” was created like that – and people love it.

The best-selling item at your restaurant?

Our main dish, the ‘Thali’ with its freshly made daily changing ingredients, is the best-selling item. It’s a plate with rice, dhal, vegetables, chutneys, yoghurt, salad and bread. And sweets like the ayurvedic carrot cake and the “Chia Dream” are very popular.

A cooking tip…

If you put your herbs in fat when you start cooking just for a short time, the herbs’ taste unfolds and their impact on the whole dish is improved. In ayurveda you use ghee, but the vegan way is usually coconut oil.

A dining tip (other than your own restaurant)…

I like New Deli Yoga in Kreuzberg; you can taste the creativity in their freshly made dishes and the atmosphere is good, too. Good cooking is about using fresh, seasonal ingredients and a lot of herbs – “clean eating” so to speak.

The best thing about having a restaurant in Berlin?

Being your own boss, of course, and the fact that you never know what the next day brings. Owning my own place means that I don’t have to make compromises. Earlier when I was working in PR and marketing, I didn’t have that feeling. Now, no matter what decision I make, I know it’s my responsibility – and I like that!

The worst…

Lack of time for other things – but then, having the freedom of being your own boss balances everything out.

Dabbawalla, Hohenstaufenstr. 64, Schöneberg, U-Bhf Viktoria-Luise-Platz, Mon-Sat 11-18:00