Restaurant Caffé Bocconi, Berlin
On our last night in Berlin Mike and I had dinner at Restaurant Caffé Bocconi, a small Italian restaurant and café in the Charlottenburg neighborhood. I found this restaurant through TripAdvisor and it was a serious winner. The owner, Fabio, who you will likely meet upon arrival, is originally from Sicily and had a corporate job that he just wasn’t too fond of. So, he decided to do what made him happy and opened this little jewel of a restaurant in Berlin!
When we arrived at Caffé Bocconi we were immediately greeted and seated by Fabio himself. It was a beautiful night so we were able to enjoy dinner al fresco at one of the handful of tables on the outdoor patio. Once we were settled in, Fabio came back to our table and talked to us for a good 5 minutes about the menu. As I mentioned, Fabio is originally from Sicily so most of the dishes are made with a Sicilian style. Fabio explained how they make their tagliatelle and gnocchi fresh every day and went on to give us details about each dish on the menu – this did not make it easy to choose what to order! We decided to take it slow (in true European style) and start with a bottle of wine while we pondered the menu.
We finally settled on our order and started with an antipasto mix for two along with the Caponata Siciliana. Caponata is not a dish we would usually order, and we actually didn’t order it at first. Fabio’s explanation of how they had just roasted all of the beautiful vegetables that morning and how the flavors are so rich and delicious stuck in my head and I eventually waved him over and told him to add it on. Quite the salesman, that Fabio!
Well, I’m glad I went with my gut (and Fabio’s glowing recommendation) because the caponata was absolutely amazing! Not to say that the antipasto wasn’t amazing, because it was – I mean, look at the picture! But let’s get back to that caponata – straight up, knock your socks off, delicious. There was so much flavor packed into this warm mound of vegetables that I may have moaned once or twice after taking a bite. This is not to be missed when dining at Caffé Bocconi.
After our two starters we could have easily had dessert and called it a night, but we still had two pasta dishes on their way. Mike and I shared the gnocchi with mint pesto, nuts, and cherry tomatoes, and the tagliatelle with tomato sauce, mushrooms, and guanciale. The gnocchi were perfectly light and both dishes were fresh and packed with flavor. Fabio sources the guanciale straight from Sicily and it’s not available anywhere else in Berlin which makes the dish even more special. I will say that the mint pesto has a distinctive taste that might not necessarily be for everyone. Mike and I both enjoyed it, but I think we preferred the tagliatelle a bit more.
We couldn’t leave without a little something sweet so we ordered the warm chocolate pie for dessert. I’ll be honest, it wasn’t the best chocolate pie I’ve ever had, we probably should have gone with the tiramisu, but paired with a small apéritif courtesy of Fabio it was still a satisfying end to an overall fantastic meal.
For those that are in Berlin or just passing through, I think it’s pretty obvious that I highly recommend stopping in for dinner at Caffé Bocconi. The small, intimate space and very personal service make for a wonderful experience. If you’re able to plan ahead I would definitely make a reservation, especially on the weekends. Buon appetito!
Restaurant Caffé Bocconi is located at Schlüterstraße 74 in Berlin’s Charlottenburg neighborhood. Reservations can be made via e-mail (email@example.com) or by phone (+49 30 31998384).