Calvin Trillin tells a well known story about how German food has determined the outcome of more wars than all other cuisines combined. As he tells it, for centuries, those nasty Prussians have vanquished foe after foe in battle after battle….until lunch…after which, they were too stuffed to remount. Makes sense to us.
We’re posting our two recent meals at Café Berlin now, because they are the polar opposite of the Japanese food we were eating last week, and because, even though this food goes with a Las Vegas summer about as well as Padma Lakshmi did with Salman Rushdie, any Kraut who has the Teutonic temerity to Hun-ker down and sling the schnitzel in 110 degree weather deserves a hearty seig heil….or something like that.
Besides, it also gives us a chance to use the little German we know, and try to figure out a way to incorporate a bunch of bad German jokes into this review, like:
– How does the recipe for German chocolate cake begin? First, you invade the kitchen.
– Did you hear about the German-Chinese restaurant? The food’s great but an hour later you’re hungry for power.
– Did ELV ever tell you about the really, really bad German restaurant he once ate in? The , the spätzle was gummy, the schnitzel was tough… and the wurst was yet to come!
Who knew German food could be such a humorous muse?
You may not find it such, but you will find plenty of wonderful wursts and smashing schnitzels at this odd little spot on Sunset near Decatur. We say “odd” because calling this deli-dining room “bare bones” is like calling this cuisine “slightly filling.”
But forget the decor (or lack of same) and tuck into a wurstplatte of big, meaty, housemade sausages and you’ll feel like yodeling in no time. As good as they are, it was the zigeuner schnitzel that got our attention: it being a nicely breaded pork cutlet smothered in some serious and spicy paprika gravy. (The french fries were also impressive and quite a feat for an obscure, little joint where you’d normally expect them to be straight from the Sysco truck.)
We’ll probably wait until the weather cools before working our way through the rest of the menu, but notwithstanding the dreary decor, there’s a lot to love about this place….especially if you have a hankerin’ for some heavy alimentary artillery
4850 West Sunset Rd. (at Decatur)
Las Vegas, NV 89118