Inspired by Speaking Denglish's little guide to Karlsruhe, I thought I'd make my own little guide about decent places to go out for a meal or snack in Karlsruhe as a family (with or without the kids).
Lunch & dinner
The best burger in town. You can pick and choose every ingredient in your burger, its size and sides. My favourite is a slice of goats cheese on top of a small piece of meat (portions are very generous). There are also sausages and the obligatory Currywurst is very good too. The kids can choose their burger without salad!! I love the modern twist on the rustic interior of the restaurant too. I am in love with their wood panelling.
A family friendly Italian restaurant. Kids eat free if they are under 6. There is a playground a few meters away. You can eat outdoors in the summer. And the seasonal raviolis are my favourite. Sounds good? Well, it is. We really like this place for a nice family meal. LJ loves the pizzas too. It gets quite noisy when crowded as the building echoes really badly. But the rest is all good. They also do a good brunch (limited selection) on the weekend.
If you are after a quick and cheap traditional Schnitzel mit Pommes or Maultaschen with a pint of beer, this is perfect. Hearty German dishes with a good selection of classics and seasonal choices. Family friendly (there is a box of toys and books lying around somewhere) and quick and decent food. No frills but we like it.
Assuming, the husband and I were both in the city, our babysitter was available and we would have a whole evening to ourselves (... I can dream...), then our date night would probably take place at Casa do José. It is a Portuguese restaurant on Kreigsstrasse. The location is not the best and there is no outside space, but these are the only two drawbacks. The place is wonderful. The host/manager, José, is lovely and will take very good care of you. Most importantly the food is great. It is really simple Portuguese food (a difficult thing to find these days). It is not fancy. It is delicious, hearty, simple food cooked with care and attention. The lunchtime specials are well priced and change regularly (just like the whole menu). If you fancy some delicious meat, try the espetadas, a Madeira speciality where the meat is so tender, it melts in your mouth. My favourite is the cod fish. Oh and they make Pasteis de Nata on Sundays! It is one of our favourite restaurants in Karlsruhe and we would be there everyday if we could.
|Pasteis de bacalhau / cod cakes at Casa do Jose|
We like brunch where it is a buffet and you can help yourself at your own speed. But these tend to disappear little by little. Alex's in the PostGalerie shopping centre does a good one on Sundays but it gets very busy and you have little chance of finding a table past 10am if you have not booked.
We also like the brunches at Laid und Leben. It is a bakery with a cafe attached. No buffet but the selection is very good. The bread and croissants are fresh and there are kids options too. There is a great playground just behind it too to work off the extra croissant. Warning: it gets very busy on Sundays.
The best ice-creams in town, for me, are in the Oststadt area. It is a small ice-cream parlour called Eis Cassata run by an Italian family. The queues outside on nice sunny days say it all. There are a few benches outside to sit and watch the world go by. You can order in German or Italian, which always a good sign.
A piece of cake
If you fancy a little macaroon or a nice French-inspired cake, head over to Patisserie Ludwig. The beautiful display of cakes and other sweets will make your mouth water. Our favourites there are the small macaroons. You can also pick some up which are damaged for a cheaper price. You can eat in or take-away. The staff is always extremely helpful and very friendly (something to be noted in Germany). Your wallet won't thank you but your taste buds will.
Aposto is a café in the busy city centre with a play area. What else do you need to know? Your little ones can be occupied (provided they can go up and down a flight of stairs) while you have an English breakfast or a simple cup of coffee.
If you have any other suggestions, I'd love to hear them.