Berlin Gluten Free: Gluten-free friendly city.
Three Celiacs in discovering Berlin. The journey of Antonella B. (Testimony)
The 15 August we left to visit Berlin (5 days): my family along with some friends. Three Celiacs in a group of ten people: I, my friend Emanuela and his son Luca (18 years). Our first step was to seek a central hotel (We stayed for only 5 days) where we might have a gluten free breakfast. We booked “Crowne Plaza Berlin – City Ctr Nurnberger” with a good price through Booking.com.
The second step (After you download the GF Berlin Guide that I found on allaroundisglutenfree.pselion.net) (in the article Germany Gluten Free) was writing to Celiac Association of Germany to ask if there was a Gluten Free Guide of Berlin more updated: They sent the same that I had downloaded on allaroundisglutenfree.pselion.net . After receiving some advice from friends, We have printed GF card for restaurants in German by allaroundisglutenfree.pselion.net and then I bought a Berlin Guide. Berlin is a welcoming city for coeliacs: Maybe it's not Rome or Madrid but still you will find stores easily (supermarket chains and more – Rossman , dm-drogherie markt or that sell organic produce gluten-free products) and some restaurant chains [Although I always recommend extreme caution: We are accustomed to individual restaurants in Rome and in Germany the gluten free restaurants belong mostly to restaurant chains and individual restaurants are few, at least in the city center]. We are left without a large stash of gluten-free food in the bag: This was a good choice.
When you arrive at the airport you can easily reach any place of the city by public transport.
Berlin is a city special. Berlin is not Rome (We are the Romans) or London or Paris but nevertheless Berlin is a city in big turmoil (full of hundreds of buildings under construction), with a very young population and multiethnic society. Berlin is a city that you'll appreciate after a few days of visit. You must enter his soul. A city that looks to the future after having come to terms with the tragic history of the last century: the memories of its history are visible: the places that remember the tragedy of Nazism or of the Berlin wall, symbol of the city divided into two. Berlin is a modern city with a public transport very efficient: I recommend you take a ride on the tourist coaches (Those two floors. Several companies make this service). You will understand better the history of the city and its transformation after the fall of the wall. You can get off where you prefer to admire the city area and then climb on the bus later and keep visiting.
Our hotel Crowne Plaza Berlin – City Ctr Nurnberger provided a good selection of gluten-free bread (upon our request) and an international buffet: We Celiacs but only ate the foods (yogurt, fruit, cheese and anything else we had – according to our judgment – the gluten free. Although the staff had given assurance that meats and other products were gluten free (Maybe for the sole reason that they were pork), We had some doubts about the knowledge of potential hazardous ingredients and unsafe then used in production and contamination.
“Kurfürstendamm” is perhaps the most elegant street of Berlin (close to our hotel and at the nearby areas of interest) and is one of the most popular places of the city with its fashionable shops. We had dinner four times in this area: by MAREDO (a chain that offers gluten-free dishes. The staff showed us gluten-free dishes as we could eat but ice cream chef made a blunder: They showed taste gluten free but then the ice cream came with a biscuit very unsafe above that I declined. This is the problem of the chains where staff change and there is no direct management); We dined well from BLOCK HOUSE ( other chain restaurants with gluten free menus); by SIMELA [a pizza & also gluten free Focaccia – a very small but nice where we enjoyed a good gluten-free pizza (by German standards) and drank a good gluten-free beer]; HARD ROCK CAFE’ (a great deal of waiting but Luca – Celiac – has enjoyed a great gluten free hamburger sandwich)
After the tour with the touristic bus (and while climbing up and down at various stops) I recommend some milestones for me: Brandenburg Gate and Reichstag [nearby you will find a site where you must spend some time to reflect. You are arrived in front of the Mausoleum of the Holocaust or the Memorial Shoah with the nearby documentation center. Walking through the thousands of gray stems you can begin to understand the weight of human folly. In silence].
The remains of the Berlin wall, the Ceck Point Charlie , the Museum of DDR are the memories (much for tourism of Berlin divided into two parts).
The areas (to visit) Potsdamer Platz and Alexander Plaz are the emblems of the new Berlin that looks to the future with its modern buildings (new construction sites everywhere and hundreds of cranes are the testimony of the new course) the result of the ingenuity and creativity of the most famous engineers and architects from all over the world. During your stay, passed along the tree-lined avenue of “Unter den Linden” and then visit the Museum Island " Museumsinsel” : especially if you want to visit the “Pergamonmuseum” You must book your ticket before (set time and day of your visit) to avoid long queues as we made. Another place to visit is the “Topographie des Terrors” . The day before our departure we were visiting the concentration camp Sachsenhausen in the town of Oranienburg (easily reached by local train from Berlin Central station.
During our wanderings we daily was quite easy to find a place to eat: along with the large supermarket chains (indicated in the Guide The German Coeliac Association) We have found other distributors such as VITALIA (in Metro station Alexander Platz ) or stopped in for lunch for a quick meal from “EAT CHA CHA” a fast restaurant Thai recommended by the Association of German Celiac and other times in chain restaurants " dean & david” – fresh food ( You can enjoy some dishes that can be cooked gluten free and which are indicated in the menu: These dishes are made in view but a Council: check the preparation should they have not understood the gluten free. Once we had to send back a salad where they had put on bread with gluten: they hadn't heard me “GLUTEN FREE” or “GLUTEN FREI” .
A total of Berlin was a city friendly and safe to eat "gluten free" and our trip was without problems : but be careful – as in many large cities today the Gluten free is a business and so many open and improvised writing " GLUTEN FREE” but they don't know anything.
We didn't have time to eat the other two places were indicated because far away from our tour: Jute Bäckerei and Suzette Crêperie Berlin . Will be in the next trip to Berlin
A greeting for Celiacs in trip
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We thank Antonella B. for all information and photographs that sent.
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