Cafe Berlin

4.7
1589 reviews
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$30 and under
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German
Café Berlin has been serving authentic German cuisine on Capitol Hill since 1985. It occupies the ground floor of three townhouses whose front yards serve as Biergarten for outdoor dining. The interior features a small bar and two cozy dining rooms. The restaurant is located within a short walking distance of Union Station and the U.S. Capitol. It draws politicians, congressional staffer, and tourists as well a loyal following of neighborhood residents. The traditional dishes are authentically prepared with lighter touch by chefs with extensive experience in German cuisine. In addition to the regular menu, the restaurant offer seasonally changing menus that feature fresh asparagus in the spring, salads and light fares in the summer, Bavarian dishes during Oktoberfest in the fall, and wild game in the winter. Desserts which are freshly made in-house include apple strudel, black forest cake, and luscious cream tortes. The bar offers a selection of imported German beers and wines.
What 1589 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.7based on recent ratings
4.8
food
4.6
service
4.4
ambience
4.5
value
Noise · Quiet
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
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m
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The wine prices per glass are a little steep - $12.00 per a five ounce glass. Would also like to see them bring back a more oaky Chardonnay. All the wines are either German or Austrian and they tend toward the citrusy side. All in all a wonderful restaurant.

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U
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Sauerbraten not so good! Forelle was wonderful. Bread poor not German!

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KZ
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Our reservation was for 4 people but we had 5 and the restaurant had no problem accommodating us. The food was good but I was disappointed in the menu. The restaurant's website listed a wild game menu, including venison, which I was looking forward to. But this menu was not available, and no explanation why. The restaurant offers traditional German food; it's on the heavy side but good fare for a winter meal.
Also, it was much noisier than we expected, but we had a good time in spite of that.

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CV
1 review
Dined on February 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The food was authentic and wonderful! We thoroughly enjoyed our meal and the Dunkel bier, however I really wish there was a better selection of bier. An example being Colaweissen or Natur Radlers. Aside from that, this place is absolutely fabulous and I highly recommend it!

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SW
Washington DC
15 reviews
Dined on February 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful, well prepared food! The staff is always pleasant and helpful.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Brunch was delicious and service fantastic! I plan to go back to try dinner.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The server was attentive and the food was amazing. The restaurant was clean and everyone was polite. Had a reservation and they seated us right away even though the reservation was packed. I would definitely return to this restaurant. Loved it!

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VA
Washington DC
27 reviews
Dined on February 3, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Based on a friend's recommendation, we tried Café Berlin. We both very much enjoy classic German food, and DC is basically bereft of good German cuisine. We're glad we tried Café Berlin. Food was very good, from the appetizers (we both had soups) thru the main courses (gnocchi for my wife and a wild boar special for me) and dessert. Service was friendly and generally prompt. Very nice dining room. Only very minor quibbles: soup portions seemed very small (they were called cups, I guess we have different ideas of what that means), the space we were seated in the back was a bit cramped, and it appears that the restaurant's practice is to only have a subset of the draft beers listed on the menu actually available on a given evening. I guess the latter is ok, but it would be better if the available ones were either listed in the menu OR the waiter told patrons at the outset which are available. Neither happened the evening we were there and so at one point we settled on a couple of choices and it turned out neither was available. Not a huge deal but a little frustration could have been avoided by informing us up front what was available. Anyway, we will be back and recommend it to others.

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Just about one of the finest restaurants in Washington!

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M
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on February 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Delicious meals in a cozy setting, on Capitol Hill with affordable lunch prices.

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DW
Palm Springs
25 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food and service. I moved from DC six years ago and had to try it for dinner again. I was not disappointed.

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GB
New York Area
8 reviews
Dined on January 27, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful food. Service excellent. We definitely plan to return.

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CJ
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on January 26, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 2

Very drafty in the space, Couldn't get warm. Mom enjoyed jagerschnitzel, dad enjoyed the sausage platter. Preztels were tasty. Service was very casual.

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US
1 review
Dined on January 24, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

I live near cafe Berlin and was here for dining with family or friends for several
times. I also ordered dinner to be picked up .It was always very good and I would
recommend it to my friends.

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E
1 review
Dined on January 21, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Totally in love with this place. It’s is definitely the place to go for an authentic German meal. My German boyfriend told that food tasted as his mom cooked it ( highest compliment :)) stuff is incredibly friendly. Highly recommend!

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K
New England
16 reviews
Dined on January 20, 2019
Overall 2food 4service 1ambience 5

Have been to Cafe Berlin on many visits to DC and have always enjoyed my dining experience. The food was good but not exceptional as in the past. Our server was friendly and attenitive initially but we waited a ridiculously long time for our food , over 40 minutes, and he never came back to ask how our meals were after they were delivered. I was traveling with my grandson and introducing him to German food—overall not the best dinner for us.

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KL
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Had a perfect birthday lunch celebration!! Can't wait to go back. Food and beer was exceptional!!

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OT
1 review
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Food is generous portions and excellent in taste

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K
Chicago
3 reviews
Dined on January 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Arguably the best German food I’ve had in years.

I rolled in at 7:30 PM for a solo dinner, and I had a great experience. I ordered the Wurst Platter (half portion), and I (embarrassing) wolfed down the whole thing. The five sausages were each delicious, as were the broccoli and Spaetzel side dishes on which the sausages were served. I ate at the bar, and the bartender (MK) was awesome. Her recommendations were perfect, and the stories about all the political intrigue that takes place there were super entertaining. I had the best conversations with some locals who frequent the restaurant (it has a lot of local patrons who dine there regularly).

I also got to meet the owner/chef, Rico. He’s awesome! The staff there really love working there and it shows. It’s got a family vibe that’s adorable.

I’m here for a few days, and I’ll be heading back to try the Schnitzel... which is also supposed to be amazing.

Thanks Cafe Berlin for a great Friday night!

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M
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I loved the special venison cheese steak. I hope that becomes a menu staple!

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on January 6, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent meal. Everything tasted great and we will be back!!!

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PJ
New York Area
4 reviews
Dined on January 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Just came back from Austria a few months ago and the food here was spot on. Very tasty, authentic, and well priced.

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WT
1 review
Dined on January 1, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

really authentic German cuisine....friendly staff....an historic restaurant after 33 years on The Hill.

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OT
Washington DC
7 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Goulash soup and pretzel & meat trays are strong but entrees are pretty average.

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OT
Raleigh
35 reviews
Dined on December 30, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

It's only a 6 minute walk from the Union Station metro. Actually, it is quite easy to find. We ordered potato pancakes which were quite good with the applesauce. Both of us ordered the sauerbraten. It was delicious! We'll definitely return!

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l
Washington DC
4 reviews
Dined on December 28, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Yummy. We came late in the afternoon, though, and they were out of almost everything we hoped to order. We were disappointed, but happy with the meals we ordered.

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SA
Jacksonville
1 review
Dined on December 26, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Fabulous food, great service, wonderful date night.

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UR
Washington DC
6 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We were there for Christmas dinner and it was excellent. We all loved our appetizers, goose, cocktails, wine and desserts. The atmosphere was warm and comfortable and the service was perfect. Can't wait to return.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Have been celebrating Christmas Eve weihnachtsgans (Christmas Goose) dinner for the past several years here. Goose is prepared just as my own mother used to make it. Easy walk from Union Station. More children attendees than I remember, but, luckily they were seated in the second room. Wonderful meal.

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AC
Los Angeles
14 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

We came here for Christmas Eve dinner and were not disappointed. We were seated promptly for our 2:30 reservation. Our waiter was attentive and very helpful with recommendations. We started with oxtail consomme and the 4 salads, followed by the sauerbraten and weihnachtsgans (Christmas goose). Both were delicious and very filling. Dessert was fine, but couldn't match the entrees. We look forward to coming back here for another meal in the future.

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S
Washington DC
22 reviews
Dined on December 21, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

We have come here several times and were never disappointed. The Brotzeitplatte (selection of cold meats and radish, pickled red onion, spicy mustard & bread) is perfect for sharing and a great way to start. The dishes are authentic and seasonal, and the portions are more than generous, with most entrees enough to satisfy two normal appetites. The service could not be more helpful, attentive and unobtrusive...In all, a very enjoyable spot in Capitol Hill which we highly recommend.

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CT
1 review
Dined on December 18, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Tried Cafe Berlin for a holiday lunch with a friend - it was great.

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g
Washington DC
9 reviews
Dined on December 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The server made several good suggestions about food and drink that were spot on. He was responsive to special requests. The food was, of course, delicious and just right for a cold December evening.

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OT
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Knowledgeable wait staff made good recommendations. Due to weather we were late getting started and staff worked to serve us so that we made it to the theater in plenty of time.

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b
Washington DC
13 reviews
Dined on December 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Another great meal with friends at Cafe Berlin. The food is always tasty.

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RD
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on December 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great authentic German cuisine within walking distance of Union Station. Service and staff were excellent.

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C
1 review
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

From a random early Friday dinner in December: Most of the food was incredibly authentic and yummy. Our entrees were rushed; the appetizers weren't half finished when we had to make room on the table for our main course. One member ordered a "special" of venison schnitzel that was both overcooked and extremely greasy. ("Special" because one guest remembered it as having been in offer nearly a year before.) All other dishes were verging on exceptional, with the käsekuchen leading the pack. The wine list isn't extensive, but has some good options. The atmosphere is nicely quiet and cozy.

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B
Dallas
456 reviews
Dined on December 7, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 3

Good German food and not bad for people watching. Ordered hot tea and water was barely warm. Sent it back and still was not “hit.” Service was VeRY good; a nice, polite young man who was very attentive.

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RB
Washington DC
3 reviews
Dined on December 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

This is my fourth time eating at Cafe Berlin and there will be many more. Very authentic German cuisine with generous portions. The seasonal wild game menu is incredible. I have ordered something different each time and have been impressed with the quality and taste. It is a very cozy, somatic spot, great for dates or anniversaries.

I can not recommend Cafe Berlin highly enough.

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KT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on November 30, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

We are repeat customers. The wild game menu is unique and outstanding. The service is uniformly excellent and welcoming. The food is authentic and delicious across the board. Love those sauerkraut balls. The same holds true for the beers. Very well done. We’ll be back.

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