Frankfurt’s best traditional German restaurants

Frankfurt a.k.a Mainhattan is the finance and business centre of Germany. While Frankfurt has some great qualities, it is hard to feel like you are living in Germany when you are surrounded by skyscrapers and masses of expats. But amongst all of this, there is a lot of history and culture, and most importantly great German cuisine. Germany is best known for its comfort food; lots of meat, especially pork, potatoes served in huge portions and washed down with beer. Frankfurt is no different to this with the additional of Frankfurt specialties such as Handkäse,Grüne Soße and Apfelwein. Here’s where to find the best of the traditional food in Frankfurt:

 

1. Zum Bitburger

Located right in the heart of the city (near the Alte Oper) this small restaurant is a crowd favourite with many locals coming in for an afterwork beer. Always sporting a bustling atmosphere, authentic german food and fast flowing beer, from their special cooling system. Reserve a table to get a seat.

Must try: the ‘Frankfurter Platter’ with local meat products and sauerkraut for the ultimate experience.

 

2. Apfelwein Wagner

For the most traditional German experience head to Sachensenhausen (south of the river), this historic neighbourhood is known for its cobble stones, and Apfelwein taverns. While beer is typically the drink of choice across Germany, Frankfurt has another speciality, Apfelwein (apple cider. Best drank 50:50 with water). Wagner is a favourite among tourists and locals, and offers possibly the most authentically German experience in Frankfurt. Long established, serving traditional meals, in huge portions. Try all of the Frankfurt specialties here including: ‘Handkäse mit Musik’ (local cheese) and ‘Grüne Soße’ (Green herb sauce).

Warning: no beer sold here, and cash only!

 

3. Die Werkskantine

An automotive atmosphere, located in the east of Frankfurt, Die Werkskantine is a must visit for anyone who loves cars. This restaurant is next to the KlassikStadt Museum (Motor Museum) but surprises visitors with its relaxing ambience and top quality dishes.  The building is an old factory of three floors surrounded by classic cars. All of the Frankfurt specialities are available here as well as grilled specialties, organic chickens from the Rotisseries, regional wines and home baked cakes.

Must try: Sharing plate for 2 ‘Von allem ein bisschen für 2.’ Includes small portions of typical German dishes.

 

4. Klosterhof

Serving since 1936, this  monastery is a hidden gem in a central location with a large beer garden. A relaxing and cosy atmosphere giving the impression of stepping back in time. All of the meat products are sourced from a family butcher in the Hochtaunus area. They have a great selection of beers including their in-house, Klosterhof Naturtrüb, as well as local wines (Rheingauer Riesling).

Must try: Beef Roulade, Homemade Apple Strudel

 

5. Ebbelwoi Unser

They claim that their intention was to create a ‘second living room’. And that is exactly what this place does. Its cosy but lively atmosphere is like being at home with comfort food and good drinks. It’s a good place to mingle with others as seats can be close together. Food is homemade, with big portions and clearly made with love. A good place to go for celebrations and the atmosphere can get quite lively.

Must try: Kartoffelwurst (sausage with sauerkraut and mashed potatoes), and local Apfelwein.

Warning: cash only!

 

6. Mutter Ernst

A hidden gem tucked between the designer stores of Chanel, Prada and Hermes, Mutter Ernst certainly doesn’t fit in with its neighbouring establishments. It is a no frills kind of place, with just plain good German food such as a range of Wursts (sausages) and potato salads. An old school interior, a good quality local dishes – Mutter Ernst is deliciously simple. Usually a full house – so expect to share a table.

Must try: Sharing platter (for a group) featuring a sample of all of the local dishes

 

7. Zum Gemalten Haus

Translated to ‘The Painted House’ this beautifully decorated house is one of the oldest and most traditional restaurants in Frankfurt. A panelled dining room full of history, is another step back in time located in Sachsenhausen with award-winning Grüne Soße and Apfelwein. Great local dishes, constant beer flowing, and keep an eye out for the ‘Brezelbub’, a man who walks around with a basket of baked goods for the guests. A lively atmosphere with a range of big tables for sharing, or more intimate tables for a private dinner.

Must try: Frankfurter platte or Frankfurter Schnitzel with Grüne Soße + Bratkartoffeln (Fried Potatoes).

 

8. Lokalbahnhof

A traditional restaurant with a modern twist. With cool interiors and a regular changing menu, this German restaurant takes great classics and adds an urban touch. A great selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes, as well as the popular German cuisine always available. Open every Sunday for their legendary brunch buffet (also available on public holidays) featuring a variety of delicacies.

Must try: Sunday brunch or Chilli-schnitzel.

 

 

 

(Words Contributed by: Kira Crabtree 08.10.2019)