You can hear all sorts of things in the Elbphilharmonie but growling bellies are not normally among them. Fortunately, there are plenty of outstanding eateries in the area. Here’s a list of our top ten favourites:
Neni is like a holiday for the palate. They have a bit of everything, but always combined in surprising ways and served in a modern style. Neni calls it soul food, but you’ll also find slow, fast and vegan fare here too. The clientele, chatting away without a care in the world, is correspondingly diverse. Just the way it should be in a port city!
Hang loose – it’s all pretty laid back in the Surfkitchen. You sit at long wooden tables and the walls are decorated with surfboards. The menu is an international mixture of salads, snacks, pizzas and burgers – and you’ll also find a Thai curry and an Italian pasta dish on there too. When the weather is fine, you can sit on the terrace and enjoy a view of the Elbe. They play chilled-out lounge music in the evenings, perfect for relaxing after work.
3. Boilerman Bar
A classy, traditional bar – perfect for a stiff drink when the Hamburg breeze is blowing. Sink into a leather armchair and enjoy one of the many simple highballs on the menu. Connoisseurs will love the respectable selection of whiskeys and bourbon. You can also end the evening with something non-alcoholic if you wish – the virgin drinks are amazing.
Good, simple cuisine meets North German modernity: that’s how we’d describe the menu in Vlet. Both gourmets and architecture fans get their money’s worth in the beautiful former warehouse. Incidentally, »vlet« is the Old High German word for »fleet«, the canals linking the Elbe and Alster rivers. If you’re looking for an evening with true Hamburg flair, this is the place for you.
HafenCity is a multicultural place, as befitting a harbour. In this setting, Carls Brasserie represents the French savoir vivre. Directly opposite the Elbphilharmonie, you can bite into scrumptious tartines and wash them down with a cool Chardonnay. Perfect for anyone who wants to drop by for a quick bite before an event.
6. BIANC and picnic by bianc
We recommend the BIANC gourmet restaurant on the Magellan Terraces to anyone who really wants to treat themselves to something special. The Italian head chef Matteo Ferrantino serves up colourful artworks that still reveal what they are made of. To top that off, warm and relaxed staff, young top sommeliers and a modern, Mediterranean feel-good architecture. picnic by bianc next door offers snacks and drinks during the day.
The Oberhafenkantine is tiny and stands askew. It has more than a few storm tides and changes of ownership behind it, and has long achieved cult status as a result. On the menu is down-to-earth food that will satisfy any hunger: white Hamburg sausages, meatballs and jacket potatoes, as well as cucumber soup or rump steak. All at affordable prices and in wonderfully quaint surroundings.
8. Chilli Club
The Chilli Club is a lot of things all at once: stylish, Asian, modern and relaxed. Restaurant, lounge, cocktail bar and lunchroom. They even offer takeaway. So you’re bound to find what you’re looking for, at least if you like wok dishes or sushi. At this Asian brasserie, the meat, fish and vegetables are always guaranteed to be fresh – excellent!
maiGlückchen is tucked away directly opposite the Magellan Terraces. The cute name (a play on the German words for happiness and lily of the valley) is misleading because the Asian restaurant is anything but cutesy. maiGlückchen is the place to go for great Chinese food that makes you happy.
This list wouldn’t be complete without the Störtebeker, the restaurant inside the Elbphilharmonie. You get to it via the Tube, the escalator leading from the main entrance to the Elbphilharmonie itself. With views over the port of Hamburg, the team serves creative, sophisticated cuisine. Guests who are only looking for a drink or a snack are also welcome – and should keep an eye out for the fantastic beer selection.
Text: Barbara Ward, last updated 31.7.2020