Al Contadino Sotto Le Stelle, Mozzarella Bar & Bottega, Mitte

Al contadino sotto le stelleWe are finally back!

Next time I decide to move to London temporarily while 7 months pregnant with twins, have them there and then move back to Berlin – slap me will you?

But we’re here.  And just in time to catch the tail end of a glorious autumn before Berlin descends into the numbing gloom that is winter.IMG_3632

Layla started nursery on Wednesday and I paced and fretted my way around her school in case the teachers called me to come collect her.  She took it better than I did.  Except for the part where she has to have lunch and the food they serve is not peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  She just stared at her vegetable soup, horrified.  A helpful little boy told her that if she didn’t eat all her food, she wouldn’t be allowed to have any fruit for dessert.  Which prompted her to shoot me a perplexed look that said “If fruit is dessert, what do they do for fun here? Self-harm?”IMG_3628

Hovering in the general environs of her school allowed me to poke my head into Mogg & Melzer, have a couple of silky coffees at The Barn and try the new Mozzarella Bar on Auguststrasse (it opened in June).

Food occupiers of August strasse tend to be trendy and overly self-aware design wise.  Much like the folk that mince around in tight trousers and tiny coats even though it’s freezing outside because “Hey – I look good in it.”  Sotto Le Stelle is more grandma but you know, grandma does new, like maybe she tries out a new shade of purple hair dye.  When I walk in, Italian rock music is blaring.  Al contadino sotto le stelleThe direttore, with the handle bar mustache and the vintage Ray Ban specs (ok so there is some trendiness present), tells me all about the different mozzarellas.  And how the ‘delicata’ comes from bovines that eat on highland and results in a sweet cheese while the ‘decisa’ comes from those ruminants that eat at sea level resulting in a salty cheese.  “The difference comes from the animals and not from anything that man had done.”

Only the Italians and the French can get all goose pimply about food.  After all, the Slow Food was conceived by an Italian: Carlo Petrini.  There is a lot of Slow Food going on at the bar.  They’ve done away entirely with wholesalers finding small producers to buy direct from.  My mozzarella duo is only €9 Euros.  A side of cherry tomatoes in pesto is €1.50 (not worth washing the plate for that, I say).  A generous plate of grilled vegetables, €3.50.  And yes, I realize I am totally jaded having just come from London, where the teenagers in my local Starbucks tote bags more expensive than the cars my friend drive in Berlin – but not bad!IMG_3626

And fun!  Mitte can do with a smattering of fun.

They do a menu of the day which I didn’t try since I had my lunch at 10:30 a.m. (people, with 3 kids, you need to live it up whenever the small window of opportunity presents itself).

Al Contadino Sotto le Stelle
Auguststraße 36


  1. says

    I might be tempted to a 10:30 lunch just to try the two different mozzarellas. A girl must do what she must do with little ones. I’m visiting Germany now…next year I have to think about visiting Berlin.

  2. says

    Absolutely lovely, you will be fine next time, though, if i remember right, you often went with layla to have a pastry and a coffee so it must have been very different to sit there by yourself. But where are the twins? Oh a cold.. poo.. all those other kids and their ‘germy breafs’! c

    • says

      The twins were with my mother who is never, ever, EVER allowed to leave. Except for next weekend when she flies back to Greece to pick up winter clothes…

  3. Tash says

    Any recommendations for a birthday dinner? It’s our second visit to Berlin as love the city and my birthday while there! Also Xmas markets any dos and dont’s, thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>