Honestly, I wasn’t sure what to expect when I made a reservation in CODA, a dessert bar in Berlin’s Neukölln and the city’s new hot spot. The thing is: often I just fail to understand experimental desserts. But our evening in CODA turned out to be one of the best food experiences I ever had in my life.
Let me explain why I was skeptical. I simply adore desserts! I love baking, I love giving my own twist to them …
Which makes me extra critical when chefs start playing around with desserts. Sometimes it’s just very hard to get my head around the fact that people use something as a cucumber in a dessert.
Pictures: ett la benn (unless otherwise stated)
CODA anticipates that in a few ways. When we arrived, Oliver Bischoff, the designer who came up with the idea of this bar, gave us a proper introduction about their concept and what to expect.
Chef René Frank – who used to be the Head Pastry Chef in 3 star Michelin restaurant in Osnabrück – doesn’t use classical pastry or refined sugar. Sweetness comes from cooking eg. beetroot to a reduction of 250%.
This really fine expectation management made me really curious. I got an instant wellness feeling and felt like I was completely up for a big treat.
My own crappy smartphone pictures 🙂
Mr Bischoff also advised us to stick to the menu order, which gradually stretches the boundaries of what you consider as a dessert.
We started off rather sweet with a white choclate mousse filled with koriander, sake-icecream and pineapple. Then I moved onto a beetroot icecream with a tofu foam and cranberries cooked in a raspberry sauce.
Picture: Maximilian Carlo Schmidt
The absolute star of the evening was the Bergkäse with sauerkraut powder, licorice and caramelised pear. It was like a moelleux. A proper party for my taste buds. I’m going to dream of this dish for a very long time …
The last course was a chocolate mouse coated with chocolate, charcoal powder, hazelnut icecream and pickled plum icecream. It was amazing.
The reason why I liked the food at CODA so much was that they stuck to the dessert concept. There wasn’t a single vegetable I could recognise as a vegetable. CODA does use undessertlike things in a very clever way: in an icecream, as a powder or a coulis …
Chocolates to die for
We concluded the evening with chocolates and cocktails. Both were pretty amazing. The chocolates were tasty, crunchy; my coda at CODA was a real fireworkks party for my tastebuds.
CODA, Friedelstrasse 47, Neukölln