Nil Local cuisine on St.Pauli

Friday, January 24 2014

Opening Times

Wednesday till Monday 18.00-22.30


Restaurant Nil
Neuer Pferdemarkt 5
20359 Hamburg-St. Pauli
.How to get there


+49 40 439 78 23

price level

Winter has found its way into Hamburg and the streets were covered with a gentle layer of snow when we entered the doors of NIL restaurant on St. Pauli last Wednesday. It was warm and cozy inside. The lofty room was drenched in soft light. Candles were burning on a modern chandelier and we felt at ease right away.

We found a place to sit along the open gallery and were welcomed by an outrageously charming Brit. We got into conversation with him as if he was an old friend, and he told us he originally came from Devon, a county in the South of England. It seems to him like he’s been in Hamburg forever though, and we took him at his word as his German was immaculate. Just like the way he cares for his customers as the evening would go on to show.

We arrive - a glass of gin and soda, along with warm, freshly baked bread and butter, and we decided to go for the January Menu: “Marinated beef tenderloin with turnip mustard, sunroot and hazelnut” followed by “Risotto with cucumber, dill and haddock” and the entrée “Free-range chicken breast and drumstick on beurre blanc and parsnips”, and a sweet finale of “Pancakes with pear, chocolate and praline ice cream” that I substituted due to gluten intolerance and instead got “Iced Crema Catalana with blood orange”.

Nil-Restaurant-Hamburg- Galerie

The meat at NIL comes from small regional farms, and they get the biggest part of their produce from organic farms in the greater Hamburg region, which makes for a beautiful seasonal menu. The appetizer alone let you taste the difference in quality compared to the usual off-the-shelf meat. These thing slices of beef are full of flavor, even if they’re a little too salty for my taste. But that was soon smoothened out by the two different delicate creams that were served along with the carpaccio. Delicious!

The fish is perfectly cooked, dill and cucumber lend the dish a fresh aroma without dominating the palate and the risotto is firm just the way it should be. We laid back for a minute. Our initial hunger was appeased and so we thankfully took on the chef’s offer to delay the main course just a little bit. Time to pay some attention to that blind date going on at our neighbor’s table…

Before the chicken arrived, we were handed a glass of crisp white wine with a slight hint of litchi which became the perfect drink to go along with the poultry, its rich reduction and the paste of parsnip. Finally, the dessert takes us another step higher yet again. That praline ice cream is outrageously good. And my iced variation of the Spanish vanilla cream tastes like a little piece of heaven. What a beautiful night!

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Nil – Local cuisine on St.Pauli
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