Friday, 12 July 2013

District Mot (Berlin)

I have never been to Vietnam, but this is how I had imagined it to be.  Bare wooden tables with bright colored plastic stools right on the streets.  On the tables - utensils in recycled cans, sauce bottles in cheap baskets, toilet paper in plastic boxes which you use as napkins.  The service is awful as, amongst many reasons, the waiters don't smile.  Yet despite all this you don't mind.  District Mot is bringing you the streets of Vietnam.  As soon as you enter the restaurant - no actually, as soon as you approach the area, you're hit with the most intoxicating olfactory experience.  Spices, meats, oils, herbs - you just can't get enough. 
The menu is filled with exciting dishes like grilled chicken feet, fried silk worms, and "everything from the piggy stewed in coconut milk" if you're feeling adventurous, and some more tame things if you're not.  You do see the conventional phos and rice paper rolls but also dishes that don't often appear in Western Vietnamese restaurants like stir-fried sweet corn and deep-fried sweet potatoes.  However, perhaps the BBQ dominates as the most popular dish.  Bright vibrant ingredients laid out on a bamboo basket, and you're given a small grill to cook yourself. 

The food is fantastic.  It's fresh, it's different, it's delicious, it's just a treat for all your senses.  Everything is fantastic until you get the bill.  That's when you hesitate.  You've just spent the entire evening desperately trying to sit straight on a backless chair, having just eaten food from chipped plates, you're wiping your mouth with toilet paper, and it took you 15 minutes to get the waiter's attention to bring the bill over --  and the meal was 20-30 euros?

It's not extortionate, and I understand and appreciate the whole experience.  I don't want proper chairs and napkins - but it's expensive for what it is. 

However, despite the prices being unreasonable, it's still worth a visit.  It's still good food, and the experience is good fun. Make sure you order one of their special drinks, and it can get pretty crowded so you might want to make a reservation.  

Address: Rosenthaler Straße 62, 10119 Berlin
Phone: 030 20089284

make-it-yourself rice paper rolls

Deep-fried fish

Sweet fried chicken

some amazing strawberry drink 

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