Fried chicken is not the first (or the second or third) foodstuff that springs to mind when I think of Berlin. Yet Henne, basic in menu (chicken, potato salad, cabbage salad, and meatballs are just about it) maximalist in décor (all of aged dark wood, stained glass, antlers, and steins Americans associate with Germany) turned out to be one of my favorite meals. I love excess and outré combinations, but sometimes simple is the way to go.
You have to drink Bavarian landbier in a chunky ceramic mug. You don’t have to order individual potato salads or the cabbage salad at all, though you might get a funny look from your waitress and you'll definitely be in the minority among fellow diners. One mayo-heavy kartoffel was plenty to share, I thought.
Do order your own half chicken, though, because that’s the whole point. Even knife-and-fork-crazed locals tear through the crackly, heavily salted skin into the juicy meat with their hands. The chicken manages to be different—hunkier and lighter—yet just as good as my favorite fried chicken at Willie Mae’s Scotch House.
I did wonder here and elsewhere if the number of seasonal tchotkes (though it's not evident in this photo) and touches like the red tartan tablecloth were just for Christmas or permanent fixtures.
Henne * Leuschnerdamm 25, Berlin, Germany