Exploring Berlin's burgeoning vegan scene
Berlin‘s vegan culture is at the forefront of the vegan movement, catering to a wide array of tastes and desires. The city’s gusto for vegan cuisine is attributed to Berlin’s youthful vibe and its vigor for sustainability.
In the search for the best vegan food that Berlin has to offer, we situated ourselves at Lux 11 hotel in the heart of city’s trendy Mitte district. We were immersed in completely vegan dishes ranging from vegan schnitzel and gyros to vegan ice cream.
Not only are there a healthy helping of Berlin restaurants that cater to vegetarians, but an incredible amount that are strictly vegan. Gone are the days of having to ask your server if any honey, butter, or milk was used to make your meal.
It’s worth noting that finding authentic German food in Berlin is a dilemma in and of itself. While most curry wurst vendors offer vegetarian and vegan options, it might be challenging to find authentic German food in Berlin proper. We happened to find more options in Leipzig, the self proclaimed vegan capital of Germany.
One of the flagship restaurants that has presented the vegan cause to the people is Kopps. If you’re looking for a more authentically German restaurant that offers vegan and vegetarian options, this is your best bet. What sets Kopps apart is that they are not only vegan, but their ingredients are locally sourced.
The restaurant not only uses a great deal of local ingredients but seasonal ones as well. One of the best parts of eating at Kopps is that you have an opportunity to taste Berlin in any given season and get to know that various flavors in their prime. Combine this with a dedication to making vegetables sexy again and you will encounter bold new dishes like turnip soup, cucumber sorbet, or strawberry gazpacho. The Kopps take on the staunch German potato will leave you speechless.
This upscale restaurant is the passion project of Chef Josita Hartanto. As a strictly vegan establishment, The Lucky Leek focuses on a more gourmet encounter. This is the kind of place you go to eat as an experience more than for a banquet. The culinary journey you’ll embark on is worth every moment. This is vegan culture at its finest.
We couldn’t resist adding The Lucky Leek to our list simply because it is one of the most innovative restaurants in Berlin, fully committed to experimenting and pushing the boundaries of a vegan fare. The restaurant seems to redefine the vegetables’ role on the plate with every bite. If eggplant tartar or beetroot-walnut contif set your imagination on fire, then you really need to set aside an evening to come experience The Lucky Leek.
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If we were to describe the hip restaurant, The Bowl, in a single word it would have to be “purity.” As one of the few certified organic vegan restaurants in Berlin, The Bowl raises the bar of food standards. All of the dishes served are not only vegan (obviously) but also gluten free, sugar free, and sustainably sourced.
The Bowl use only coconut oil and palm oil in preparation and the end result in nothing if not astounding. The vibrancy of flavor is what makes each bite stand out. The good people at The Bowl have a knack for crafting impressive sauces as well, the perfect compliment to the soft and inviting flavor of the roots and fruits that adorn your bowl.
It is the vitality and ambiance that will hit you full-on when you stroll into the cozy nook that is Viasko. All of the youthful and edgy spirit that has rejuvenated Berlin is perfectly displayed in this tiny brunch and dinner spot. Whether you came for the salads or the scrumptious cocktails, there isn’t a wrong turn as far as we can tell. The unapologetically fresh and unique take on German soup was the crown jewel for us. Viasko is certainly worth the stop on your quest to explore the city’s vegan culture.
Where have you experienced the best vegan culture?
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Chris and Tawny have had articles and videos published on USA TODAY TRAVEL, BBC Travel, Matador Network, as well as appeared as guest stars on TLC Asia's Fun Taiwan television series. When not on the road, you can find Chris and Tawny nestled in their home in Tacoma, Washington fueling up on coffee and cat cuddles while planning their future adventures. You can follow their travels on their blog, Instagram, and YouTube