I was hugely surprised by how popular the cheeseburger (and variations thereof) is in Berlin. There’s a burger place on every corner. If you come to a fork in the road, you’ve got 4 burger places to choose from. No exaggeration! (OK, an exaggeration.)
My first meal when I arrived was actually a burger, although not by my choice. My connection to Berlin was introducing me to a friend of his and his friend wanted burgers for lunch. So the first thing I ate after getting out of America was, well — yeah.
Despite the Berliner burger craze, by far and away the food that I have eaten the most is a variety of Turkish options. They have Turkish pizzas, döners, dürums, shawarma, and lentil soup. There’s a “famous” place right by my house in Neukölln called Imren Grill. I’ve eaten a dürum from Imren more times than I can count.
The dürum is filled with Dönerfleisch (presumably lamb meat,) salad, vegetables, sauces, spices, and wrapped up in a soft pita-like bread. I’d say it’s about the portion of a typical burrito, but just for 4.50 EUR. Ziemlich günstig! (Pretty economical.)
Every day for lunch my coworkers and I go out to eat somewhere in downtown Berlin-Mitte. One of the most surprising things about this journey is the amount of actual German food I have eaten is not that high. Don’t get me wrong — I’ve definitely gotten to try some new palates, but it’s not like true German food has been the most common thing for me to eat. The schnitzel and the spaetzle are delicious. The currywurst (more of a Berlin specialty) is pretty good. The sushi, the Turkish, the (European) pizza, the burgers, the Russian — they’re all quite good too.