Gourmet Stammtisch

I could have called it a Gourmet Regular’s Table but there are just those certain words that one should not even begin to try to translate and if one does, then one should use them only in the privacy of one’s own four walls to chuckle and smirk at. The typical kindergarten, rucksack and kaput, the atypical schlepp and schmuck (translated idiot, not jewelry) and then there’s Stammtisch. Stamm meaning regulars and tisch meaning table, these words are now an evident part of my daily vocabulary accompanying me in my hopping and trotting around my new city. New you say? But you’ve been here for five years? Well Dear Readers, I am thrilled to announce that I am almost German. Rubbish…I could never fully pull that off, even after the 2,5min delay sms’ to friends and the regular cursing at Deutsche Bahn, not to mention the acceptance of one rainy northern German day after the other. I am delighted to announce that last thursday in the office of our dear Mayor, well, a couple of doors down to be honest, I was honourably presented with permanent residency for Germany. Amongst the champagne celebrations and midnight burlesque shows on the Reeperbahn, I wish to commemorate this acquisition with a pledge of duty to my dear Blog. Lately as you are all aware delisHH has sadly been abandoned and deserted while yours truly has been wining and dining the nooks and crannies of the this fabulous German city. I pledge to change this and never forsake my dear readers again.

On an inauspicious Friday in Hamburg, I received a Facebook message from a not so acquainted acquaintance requesting my presence at a Gourmet Stammtisch in the Hafencity. Naturally I jumped at the word gourmet and headed off to Wandrahm-am Kaiserkai, a very auspicious address. Arriving unfashionably on-time and without any sight of “the acquaintance”, I headed on upstairs to the glass encased gallery. The place, lit up with crystal, ok glass, chandeliers, a modern white interior with cream upholstery  and glass panels; it brought all new meaning to the name Wandrahm (Wallcream in English).

Seated, still without any sign of the acquaintance, opposite curious faces as to who this very evident non-german is (little did they know), I introduced myself to the group of complete strangers as Jess, the ballet dancer. Now I’m not quite sure whether the past 5 years in Germany has battered my English pronunciation or that these educated-looking Germans had already guzzled a couple of bottles but I somehow became “Jazz, the belly dancer” and it stuck for the rest of the evening.

We were offered a selected menu and as the entire restaurant was almost empty, this was puzzling. We had two waitresses at our disposal who demanded we ordered starter, main and dessert all at once – no room for leisurely deliberation, this was business! I shared the “Baked prawns with ginger in the potato jacket, beetroot carpaccio and wasabi sesame cream” with the acquaintance who decided to eventually pitch. Beetroot carpaccio was a fantastic idea in combination with the wasabi sesame cream. Ginger is always a winner and the crispy prawns made a delightful debut. 6/7 delisHH points.

Sloshing down our Buitenverwachting Sauvignon Blanc-far too drinkable- we received course 2.  “Fried pike-perch fillet, white asparagus and lobster sauce” for me and  “Fried gilt head (Dorade) filled with tomatoes and herbs, roast potatoes and seasonal vegetables”  for the acquaintance . Both dishes were good, not amazing, not incredible, good and I think after half a bottle of wine, if a dish doesn’t scream at you, it’s a sign. The lobster cream was a welcomed addition although far more exciting in word than in mouth.

The pleasantry of the evening apart from meeting Gertrude (names have been changed to protect identity) with her luminous hair and Italian Pedro, was the dessert. A spider web of baked fig and balsamic in the  “Baked fig with chocolate ice-cream and vanilla sauce with balsamic “. Terrible idea to share it with another Stammtisch companion as this was a real treat 7/7 delisHH punkte.

A palava with the paying and slightly impatient waitresses combined with an eery atmosphere of non-existent guests was a real disappointment saved to some extent by what we put in our mouths. So if you’ve got great or interesting company hit Wandrahm in the Hafencity. If not….avoid, the silence is deafening.

Overall delisHH rating 3.5/7

p.s. all photo’s taken off my iPhone…not bad hey?


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