Posted on Monday, Aug 14, 2017

When you think of good food, do you think of Berlin? When you think of Pizza, is Germany the first country to cross your mind? The answer to both of these questions is very likely no if you are anything like I was. The truth is, however, that the best pizza on the planet—coming from someone who has had Pizza in at least 10 different countries and who considers themselves something of a pizza connoisseur in the United States—can be found in a small family run establishment in southwest Berlin.

Located just at the exit closest to Guntzelstraβe at the U-bahn station of the same name, this small unassuming restaurant will forever change your standards when it comes to Pizza, or perhaps otherwise give you standards if you didn’t already have them so to speak. As the place contains a grand total for around maybe six tables and is rarely even remotely busy you are likely to doubt me even as you sit down to order. This would be a mistake.

The arrangement of Pizza available to you will no doubt seem unfamiliar even should you opt for the English menu on hand. DON’T PANIC. There is the perfect choice for American upbringing and acculturalization with respect to Pizza. Behold, the Pizza Mista! To be quite honest I’m not even entirely sure everything that is on the thing myself even as I sit here eating it between paragraphs. The important thing is that it has something like Pepperoni—or as close as you will find in Europe—and some kind of green pepper and some seasoning and mushrooms and… onions? And other stuff, and it is GREAT. Perhaps I am laboring point but I have scarcely ever consumed Pizza which was worth comparison. Maybe you think I’m wrong and actually the best Pizza is in Italy, surely. Well—for the record—Italian Pizza is not very good in this author’s opinion and it’s not even the style of how they make it because that’s sort of the European style anyway and what you will find at Maria’s. So, this is the place to be.

If you’re feeling exceptionally adventurous, when it comes time to order your drink, be sure to say to whomever serves you, “Kann ich habe ein Radler mit Fanta?” Half Orange Fanta like you would find back in the United States and half (most likely) a local brew of beer called Berliner-Kindl, this may be unlike anything you have had before—or at the very least better than the Mike’s brand you are likely tempted to compare it to, though, indeed, as with the Pizza there is no comparison.

Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Korinne, I just spent forty euros going around on a bus to get a sightseeing tour of Berlin, I don’t have any more money, I can’t afford to eat food and nourish myself!” Again, DON’T PANIC. This exquisite meal will only set you back four euros and 10 cents, (4.10) and provide you with a full size pizza around 12 inches across in return. You could practically live on the stuff at these prices—indeed, this is something I have done myself, two years ago, to be honest. A half-liter glass of Radler will add a little bit more to that of course but at the end of the day it’s still a steal and still a lovely experience you wouldn’t want to leave Berlin without having.

Korinne Anderson
Centre international de formation europeenne
Berlin, Germany | summer 2017