A Taste of Deutschland

Just another Geschmacks site

Speisegaststätte Hemmlein

leave a comment

S 2,2 68161 Mannheim

A friend of mine, a fellow culinary enthusiast, asked yesterday when I would try the top rated overall restaurant in Mannheim, according to several online outlets.   She’s been there numerous times and keeps idolizing it as the ultimate place to enjoy German cuisine.  It just so happens that I had planned on visiting this establishment on my next restaurant excursion, which happens to be today.  After all, I was in the mood for some delicious German food and Speisegaststätte Hemmlein perfectly fits the bill.

Hemmlein is ideally situated in the Mannheim city centre, a short walking distance from the spacious Mannheim Marktplatz.  The restaurant does not stand along the busy streets, but close enough to them to attract hungry patrons and curious visitors alike.  The menu, which changes practically everyday, covers a good deal of authentic German food – the kind a traditional German mother would make for her family.  The entire place, ranging from the seating to the walls, the menu and the servers, are all old-fashioned.  Taking a simple glance at the single page menu (which is put inside a plastic sheet protector), you get the feeling that it has been done on an old typewriter.  Nothing fancy about it, but it gets the job done.  Heck, even the prices seem dated, which is a good thing.  This is probably one of the least expensive German restaurants in town, considering the portion sizes and quality of ingredients.

The front of the house is adorned with a combination of old black & white photos, framed in antique picture frames, along with recently taken colored group photos.  There’s even a framed list of signatures – an obvious sign of the restaurant’s popularity.  Above the bar area, there are countless trophies – the mark of a champion.  Overall, Hemmlein is not the most eye-candy place to be, but that’s not the main focus here.

 

The food at Hemmlein certainly represents Germany well.  Here, you will find a variety of traditional and authentic German dishes – schnitzel, spätzle, sauerbraten, roasted meat dishes, etc… It’s always interesting to see how different restaurants serve up a simplistic, traditional dish that is schnitzel.

Priced at 8,80 €, the Jägerschnitzel is certainly a bargain.  Two thick slices of meaty pork cutlets, coated in breadcrumbs and fried, are served in a delightfully rich brown mushroom sauce.  The pork pieces are well seasoned and massive enough to make up for the price itself.  A generous, but not overwhelming, amount of sliced mushrooms, browned and tender, top each piece of pork.  The combination of mushrooms and pork is, not surprisingly, tasty.  The juicy pork meat shines here and doesn’t get overshadowed by the mushrooms or gravy.

 

An order of schnitzel comes with a side dish of potatoes and a plate of salad.  Normally, you would be served fries with schnitzel here, but I highly recommend substituting them for Bratkartoffeln (Fried Potatoes).  They are better than most, simply dissolving upon entering your mouth.  The edges of the potatoes are crunchy and crisp, while the insides are buttery and delightful.  A completely simple side dish done right.  The salad isn’t anything special, merely small portions of various veggies to meet your daily requirements.  A salad at Hemmlein consists of bite-sized pieces of green lettuce, white and red shredded cabbage, crisp shredded carrots, and corn and red kidney beans that seem to have come out of a can.   I’ve seen this assortment multiple times at other restaurants.

 

If you happen to still have room for dessert (which most people won’t due to the mammoth portions here), I highly suggest the apple sweets.  The 3,50 € Apfelstrudel (Apple Strudel) comes with a generous amount of whipped cream and three small scoops of vanilla ice cream.  Simply put, it looks like something that belongs in an ice cream parlor.  The apple strudel is warm and smells great, the pastry jacket is probably the best part.  The filling needs some work as the slices of apple weren’t necessarily sweet.  Eaten together with the cold ice cream, however, the apple pastry is such a pleasurable experience.

Mannheim seems to have some of the best restaurants in Baden-Württemberg.  Not only are the portion sizes more than generous, the price ranges are on the low end and the quality of the dishes is kept at a sophisticated level.  Hemmlein perfectly fits this model.  Even though the owners take a simplistic approach to the other aspects of the restaurant, the food remains the core focus here.

.

Summary:

Despite taking a no-frills, simple approach, Hemmlein is one of the best overall German restaurants in the Rhein-Neckar region serving up a large selection of German dishes that are traditionally cooked and served fresh.  Rustic and old-fashioned, Hemmlein features a nice dining atmosphere.  Extremely inexpensive.  Very friendly, warm service.  Reservations recommended.

Hours: Monday – Saturday: 11:00 AM to 9:30 P.M.
               Closed Sundays and Holidays

 

Overall – 5 stars

  • Jägerschnitzel – 4.5/5
  • Bratkartoffeln (Pan-Fried Potatoes) – 5/5
  • Apfelstrudel mit Eis und Sahne (Apple Strudel with Ice Cream and Whipped Cream) – 4.5/5
  • Service – 5/5

.

Written by geschmack

March 23rd, 2010 at 11:55 pm

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.