This month in the Blogger Stammtisch, the topic is ‘Favorite 5 Restaurants in your Town’. So obviously that means for me, my favorite places to eat in Freiburg. I have written about places to eat in Freiburg before. That was directed toward people visiting Freiburg and looking for typical local places, that visitor experience. Since I now live abroad I do not have the urge to only eat ‘local’. That idea of “I have come halfway around the world to X country I am not just going to eat a hamburger.” Now I can write about the places that I really like even if they are not so typical, although there definitely are some overlaps.
5. Best Drinks
Sometimes you just want to drink. Uni Cafe is on Neimenstrasse near Martinstor right around the corner from the University. This is where we go if we just want to drink and watch people. They have a large open seating area and an extensive drinks menu. The mixed drinks come in a glass usually half-filled with your chosen alcohol and the soda separate. So they are nice and strong and you can mix it yourself. There is an entertainment factor to that. And at €5.50 a drink, not so hard on the wallet. The people watching on the square is nice. And despite numerous servers the service can be a bit slow. They do offer food and salads, but I never see anything I want when I look at the menu, so it stays as a drinks place for us.
What We Order: I like Gin and Tonic and Ali goes for Cuba Libre.
4. Best View
Karstadt is a department store at the top end of the main street in the old town. On the top floor they have a buffet restaurant. There are a bunch of sections including salad and stuff from the grill as well as more Germanic dishes. The best part about it is the terrace. The back half of the building is uncovered and has a view of the cathedral as well as the forested Castle Hill. It is a bit weird to eat in a department store, but it is tasty enough. For a weirdness factor, check out the tray carriers that stack them 4 vertically in a metal frame with wheels. Crazy that people even use them.
What We Order: One section is a mix-your-own Asian Wok thing. I tend to throw in pineapples, peppers and nuts on top of some beef. Add some chili and tell them to make a ‘scharfe sauce’ (spicy sauce). Not cheap, but hot and decent with rice.
3. Best Pizza
Pizza is something that seems to vary widely in taste. The German style pizzas tend to have a more solid and crispy crust. We have not had luck finding anything like New York style pizza here in Germany, like Sal’s in New Zealand of all places. What we do have here in Italians, so we settle for the Italian style pizza. Casanova’s is just up the road from the main station here if you leave from the main entrance. Service is speedy, though surly sometimes, and pizzas not so expensive. This has become our pizza place.
What We Order: Due Pizza Diavolo. This is the closest to pepperoni we have found. Spicy Italian salami.
2. Best Asian Food
I really like Asian food. I miss Chinese buffets from home a lot. Asia Snack is near the train station along the tram line into town. It is mainly a lunch place with takeout service that is quite popular. The family is Thai and does a full menu of various Asian dishes. The menu even has English translations.
What We Order: I go for #43 Chicken with Chili sauce, though I have recently gotten into pairing the Chicken Satay on the appetizer menu with rice for a smaller meal.
1. Best Pasta
In the back corner of Markthalle is Il Boccone. This is THE pasta place. Ali and I have traveled the entire world over and still use this place as the measuring stick for pasta. And outside of Italy we have not found any better. The place is family run and they know us by sight and order. This is our favorite place bar none. It is quick, tasty, friendly and cheap.
What We Order: Ali’s favorite is Bolognese (meat sauce) at €4.50 and I wander between Arrabiata (spicy with olives) at €5.90 and Vesuvio (blackpepper and meat in tomato-cream sauch) at €6.50.
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There are a lot of places in Freiburg to eat. I tend to stay in the city center because that is where I work and the easiest place for us to meet each other and friends. Ali and I want to venture further out riding the trams in a random direction to explore for other places, but haven’t done it yet.
As you can see there are no traditional German places on my list. I get enough German food and Schnitzel going out anyway that my favorite places are the ethnic ones. And German food is normally not very spicy, so I seek out the places that can really make it spicy enough to make me sweat.
Also check out these recommendations from other Stammtischers on their favorite places in their cities.