Skip to Content

This article contains affiliate links. We may receive compensation if you make a purchase at no additional cost to you.

25 of the Best Hamburg Restaurants and Bars (2022 Edition)

Wondering what and where to eat in Hamburg Germany? We ate and drank our way through Germany’s second largest city and returned again and again. Check out our Hamburg Food Guide with our picks for the best Hamburg restaurants, cafes, markets and bars.

Franzbrotchen at Nord Coast Coffee Roastery in Hamburg Germany

We fell head over heels for Hamburg after two visits but we didn’t stop there. We returned yet again to further explore the German port city and its progressive food scene.

Hamburg has an open, modern atmosphere that reminds us more of Scandinavian cities like Helsinki and Stockholm than German cities we’ve visited in Bavaria. It’s a cultured city with a slew of museums and no lack of street art. Plus, it’s where bands like The Beatles paid their dues.

But what about the food in Hamburg?

Kebap at Koz Urfa in Hamburg
The food scene in Hamburg is far from boring thanks to restaurants like Koz Urfa where we ate this kebap platter.

We didn’t know too much about the Hamburg food scene before our first trip. Based on our research, we were optimistic but skeptical. After all, we love German food but it isn’t exactly haute cuisine.

We originally thought we’d eat all the hamburgers in Hamburg for the irony aspect alone. After eating amazing burgers on our first night, we quickly expanded our horizons to experience the city’s cuisine in its totality, from schnitzel to salmon.

Hamburg Cheap Eats
Hamburg’s food makes us smile.

Over the next several days, we scoured the city and uncovered exciting restaurants and a thriving coffee culture. But a long weekend in Hamburg wasn’t enough to taste it all.

We’ve since returned twice to eat and drink in Hamburg. These subsequent visits gave us a chance to dive deeper and go farther. From cheap eats to a Michelin starred meal, we ate and drank a lot and share our favorite Hamburg restaurants and bars here.

Hamburg Food Guide

Summer Roll with Prawns at O-Ren Ishii in Hamburg Germany
The food in Hamburg surprised us in a good way. This summer roll was one of the better surprises.

As we quickly learned, the Hamburg food scene is both dynamic and alive. Locals and tourists cram into casual eateries from dawn to dawn since many joints stay open until the wee hours of the night, with some open 24 hours.

Henssler Henssler Mix at Henssler and Hennsler in Hamburg Germany
Finding global cuisine is easy to do in Hamburg. We found this sushi at Henssler & Henssler, a chef driven sushi restaurant.

Numerous Hamburg restaurants serve German food favorites like Currywurst as well as Hamburg food specialties like Labskaus and Franzbrotchen. However, we found it just as easy to eat global cuisine more typically found in Austria, Asia and the Middle East.

Bowl at Ban Canteen in Hamburg Germany
This Vietnamese noodle bowl at Ban Canteen motivated our successful quest to find and eat the best Asian food in Hamburg.

Fans of fine dining will find plenty to sink their teeth into when they visit Hamburg. Impressively, the top Hamburg restaurants have earned a total of 15 Michelin stars spread over 10 restaurants.

Salmon at Jellyfish in Hamburg Germany
Fine dining abounds in Hamburg. We ate this intricately plated Salmon dish at Jellyfish, one of the city’s innovative Michelin starred restaurants.

However, despite Hamburg’s cosmopolitan culture, the city’s food scene includes a healthy selection of cheap eats that go beyond Doner kebabs. Some of the city’s best restaurants are as cheap as they are delicious.

Our Favorite Hamburg Restaurants

Bresse Chicken at Heldenplatz in Hamburg Germany
Not all fine dining restaurants in Hamburg have Michelin stars. We ate this colorful Bresse Pigeon dish at Heldenplatz.

The best Hamburg restaurants run the gamut from informal to upscale. Some serve traditional German foods while others offer more exotic dishes.

These are our favorite restaurants in Hamburg:

Jellyfish

Oysters at Jellyfish in Hamburg Germany
Our Oyster course at Jellyfish masterly blended locally sourced German oysters with fennel, seaweed and yuzu.

Jellyfish isn’t a typical Michelin starred restaurant in Hamburg.

The restaurant’s minimalistic dining room has just 42 seats with servers dressed more for a picnic than a fancy dinner. Even the menu is casually presented on a handheld chalkboard. However, there’s nothing understated about the beautifully plated food that practically swims from the kitchen

Considering that Hamburg has Europe’s third busiest port after Rotterdam and Antwerp, this is a city where you will want to eat as much fish and seafood as humanly possible. At Jellyfish, Chef Stefan Barnhusen creates stunning plates using sustainable fish and seafood, much of it locally sourced.

Jellyfish Soup at Jellyfish in Hamburg Germany
Loaded with ‘fruits de mer,’ the Jellyfish Soup is a showstopper at Jellyfish.

Diners at Jellyfish choose between five, six and seven-course meals. During our dinner, the meals ranged in price from €115 to €149 with the extra courses featuring Pike Perch and Breton Lobster. The base, five-course menu featured Oysters, Sardines, Jellyfish, Monkfish, Plaice, Mussels and Salmon.

We adored all five of our courses, though our favorite was the bowl of rich, flavorful Jellyfish Soup loaded with Monkfish, Plaice, Mussels and Blackthorn berries. Given the name of the restaurant, we would expect nothing less.

Pro Tip
In addition to curated wine pairings, Jellyfish offers reasonably priced wines that complement its fish forward menu.

Jellyfish is located at Weidenallee 12, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

Frau Möller

Labskaus in Hamburg Germany
It’s a must to try Labskaus when you visit Hamburg. Similar to a hash, this local dish typically comes with fried eggs, beets, pickles and rollmops (pickled herring).

For those of us without German grandmothers to cook for us, Frau Möller (i.e. Mrs. Möller) is a traditional Hamburg pub that serves local dishes like Labskaus and Currywurst plus a long list of hamburgers. It’s also a great spot for a post-bar crawl nightcap. The pub stays open until 4 am on weeknights and until 6 am on weekends.

We felt at home as soon as we walked into this casual restaurant and grabbed a table next to a window. Our first order of business was to request glasses of Jever pilsener and decide what to eat for lunch. Unlike other Hamburg restaurants, this wasn’t a difficult decision and we quickly ordered Labskaus and Pork Steak.

Historically eaten by hungry sailors, Labskaus is reddish, comforting North German mash of ground beef, beets, potato and onions reminiscent of corn beef hash but fluffy like a mash. Frau Möller serves their version of Labskaus with fried eggs on top and rollmops (pickled herring rolled around pickles) on the side.

Though we don’t need to explain the nicely done Pork Steak, we can share that this substantial dish came smothered in a rich, creamy Jäger mushroom sauce with a side of fried potatoes.

Pro Tip
Bring cash when you eat or drink at Frau Möller. This restaurant did not accept credit cards at the time of our visit.

Frau Möller is located at Lange Reihe 96, 20099 Hamburg, Germany.

o-ren ishii

Inside O-Ren Ishii in Hamburg Germany
Locals fill the tables at o-ren ishii each weekday.

Daryl loves the movie Kill Bill. He also loves great Southeast Asian food. o-ren ishii has both.

Not only is this Hamburg restaurant named after O-Ren Ishii, the movie’s ‘Queen of the Japanese Underworld’, but it also serves some of the best Asian food we’ve eaten in Europe.

Not many people mentioned o-ren ishii to us nor did we read much about it before our lunch. Maybe locals fear revenge or they just want to keep word of this restaurant to themselves. However, the large numbers of taxi drivers and delivery men cuing up for take-away during our lunch attests to the Vietnamese street food joint’s local popularity.

Tofu Glass Noodles at O-Ren Ishii in Hamburg Germany
We didn’t miss meat when we ate these glass noodles loaded with tofu.

Since we knew that Vietnamese food would be on the menu at o-ren ishii, we planned to order big bowls of Pho. But, alas, the popular Vietnamese soup wasn’t on the restaurant’s rotating lunch menu the day of our visit.

With a blackboard menu (all in German) at our disposal at our outdoor table, we ordered homestyle street dishes like herbaceous summer rolls, glass noodles with fried tofu and a beef dish with a spicy peanut cilantro sesame sauce.

Before long, we forgot about our Pho craving and focused on the restaurant’s delicious food.

Spicy Beef at O-Ren Ishii in Hamburg Germany
Don’t worry. We got our meat on with spicy beef dish.

Owned by a couple with half-Vietnamese roots, the offerings at o-ren ishii convey a deep understanding of Vietnamese cuisine. We savored every bite filled with simple, sweet-flavored herbaceousness, occasional piquancy and slight fish sauce funk.

This unassuming lunch spot is worth a stop whether or not you’re a fan of Kill Bill. It’s special.

Pro Tip
Arrive early to score a seat at one of o-ren ishii’s tables. They fill up fast since the restaurant is only open on weekdays and only serves lunchl

o-ren ishii is located at Kleine Reichenstraße 18, 20457 Hamburg, Germany.

Imbiss bei Schorsch

Imbiss Bei Schorsch in Hamburg Germany
All Hamburg sidewalks eventually lead to Imbiss bei Schorsch.

Any visit to Hamburg without eating at least one Currywurst would be incomplete. Since Imbis bei Schorsh serves the best Currywurst in the city, a quick stop at this well-positioned stall is a must.

The folks at Imbis bei Schorsh specialize in Currywurst and pour a generous amount of spicy homemade curry tomato sauce over each fried sausage. Just ask if you want yours prepared extra spicy.

Currywurst at Imbiss Bei Schorsch in Hamburg Germany
Plan to eat the quintessential Currywurst when you eat at Imbis bei Schorsch.

Expect to spend under €10 even with beer. At the time of our visits, we spent €2.90 for Currywurst and €2.50 for a generous portion of potato salad.

For those on the fence about the cost or the carbs, we definitely recommend adding a side of homemade potato salad to your Currywurst. The combination of Schorsch’s tongue-tingling red sauce and creamy white potato salad is nothing short of magical.

Pro Tip
Imbis be Schorsch is a great choice for a late night snack. You can eat here until 12:30 am on weeknights and 1:30 am on weekends.

Imbiss bei Schorsch is located at Beim Grünen Jäger 14, 20359 Hamburg, Germany.

Mama Si

Inside Mama Si in Hamburg Germany
Beating the crowd at Mama Si allowed us to get a good look at the restaurant’s funky decor. It’s a stunner.

If o-ren ishii offers Vietnamese flavors that shine with their elemental simplicity, sister restaurant Mama Si goes a different direction by serving complex Thai food filled with flavors that “make a hard man crumble.” Could it be that we love Mama Si more than we love her older sibling across the street?

That answer is yes.

Dipping Thung-Thong Starter at Mama Si in Hamburg Germany
Dipping this Thung-Thong starter was almost as enjoyable as popping the crispy treats into our mouths.

Unlike o-ren ishii’s simple chalkboard menu, Mama Si has an expanded menu that reads like a Thai food picturebook. Multicolored lemonades and teas inhabit its opening pages followed by numerous photos of rangoons, curries and noodle dishes. There’s even a page that instructs diners how to “Eat like a Thai.”

While these instructions may seem superfluous, we’ve encountered countless people who express confusion as whether to eat their Pad Thai with forks, spoons or chopsticks.

Pad Thai at Mama Si in Hamburg Germany
Pad Thai is often a simple dish. Mama Si takes it to the next level. Not only did this dish look great but it also tasted great.

During our meal, a web of scrambled egg covered a treasure of Pad Thai noodles which we happily ate with chopsticks. Meanwhile, we used utensils to eat vivid, red, Panang Curry which was served over rice and mixed with balls of makhuea phuang (pea eggplant), peanuts and beef.

Mam Si’s beautiful plates topped with rainbow-colored greens, golds, purples and oranges virtually transported us to the Asian tropics. Even our lavender lemonade had a vivid hue of purple inside a glass of lemony fun.

Anchan Honey Lemon Soda at Mama Si in Hamburg Germany
This multi-colored lavender lemonade tantalized our eyes before it tickled our tastebuds.

Beyond its beautiful plates, Mama Si offers an immersive experience. Funky flavors of fish sauce, the light crunch of peanuts and the fragrance of thai basil and lemongrass combine to place the restaurant’s food on a high plateau in the multicultural smorgasbord that is Hamburg.

Pro Tip
Mama Si is only a two minute walk from Marshall Street Coffee, one of our favorite cafes in Hamburg.

Mama Si is located at Kleine Reichenstraße 1, 20457 Hamburg, Germany.

Köz Urfa

Koz Urfa in Hamburg Germany
The opposite of a hole in the wall, Koz Urfa has an expansive space with plenty of outdoor tables.

Food historians trace the close relationship between the Germans and the Turks all the way back to the end of the 18th century. That relationship is a curious one for people who’ve not yet traveled to Germany and strictly associate German food with Bratwurst and Sauerbraten but not Kebabs.

Those people have missed the memo. Thanks to Germany’s relationship, the doner kebab has grown into the official street food of Germany. It’s gotten to the point that there are apparently more doner kebab stands in Berlin than in Istanbul. Hamburg has its fair share too with Köz Urfa standing out from the pack

Grilled Meatat Koz Urfa in Hamburg
Unless you’re a vegetarian, skipping meat is simply not an option at Koz Urfa.

Diners who enter Köz Urfa’s dining room walk past a procession of raw spiced red meat kebabs standing in neat rows. Despite the restaurant’s large menu, there’s no mystery here about what to order.

And order we did. Juicy grilled spiced ground meat appeared on a large plate that would have been more than enough to share along with long grain rice, red barley, roasted tomatoes, a long roasted medium piquant chili and tangy pool of yogurt.

Lunch at Koz Urfa in Hamburg
Our lunch at Koz Urfa was a feast that we simply couldn’t finish and not for lack of trying.

It was a good thing we were hungry since we also ordered a monstrous sized dish called Yogurtlu Kebap – skewers of meatballs on toasted bread topped with a copious amount of a tomato yogurt sauce. Everything tasted great. Our only regret is ordering a side of fries that arrived with a big blog of mayonnaise – talk about overkill.

In a rare move, we skipped dinner later that evening. However, in a true confession, we did find room for a late night chocolate bar before bed.

Pro Tip
Don’t order too many plates or you’ll be too full for dinner even if you don’t eat it all. We learned this tip the hard way.

Köz Urfa is located at Paul-Nevermann-Platz 2, 22765 Hamburg, Germany.

Brücke 10

Brucke 10 in Hamburg Germany
Located in Hamburg’s port, Brucke 10 offers an affordable dining experience with a waterfront view.

Most cities have a signature sandwich and Hamburg is no exception. Fischbrötchen, served at stands all along the Elbe, is as simple as fish on a bun. However, since the sandwich’s flavors can be complex with a variety of fresh fish and tasty toppings, we consider the Fischbrötchen to be one of the best sandwiches in the world.

We headed to Brücke 10 on the edge of the Elbe to try our first Fischbrötchen in Hamburg. The local eatery’s name translates to Bridge 10 and that’s exactly where we found it.

Fischbrotchen at Brucke 10 in Hamburg Germany
Ahoi! The Fischbrotchen is an iconic Hamburg sandwich.

Diners at Brücke 10 can eat inside or outside depending on their mood and the weather. Options at Brücke 10, include Hot-Smoked Salmon (our choice), Rollmops, Mackerel, Fried Herring and Crab.

For those keeping count, sandwich prices ranged from €3 to €6 at the time of our meal at Brücke 10. Considering the freshness of the fish, we consider the pricing to be a true bargain.

Pro Tip
Expect a relatively quick-moving queue at this popular spot.

Brücke 10 is located at St. Pauli-Landungsbrücken 10, 20359 Hamburg, Germany.

Erika’s Eck

Erikas Eck in Hamburg Germany
Erika’s Eck is the late night answer to many hungry Hamburgers.

Have you ever craved Wiener Schnitzel at 4 am after a few too many beers? If so, Erika’s Eck is the answer to your late-night needs in Hamburg.

Erika’s Eck dates back 40 years when it fed butchers who worked at a nearby slaughterhouse. It now serves a variety of hungry diners at all hours of the day and night.

This cheap eats favorite literally stays open 21 hours a day, from 5 pm to 2 pm on weekdays and 16 hours a day on weekends and public holidays from 5 pm to 9 am.

Don’t expect to find fancy food at Erika’s Eck. What you will find is a friendly, bare-bones atmosphere as well as fairly priced traditional German food.

Wiener Schnitzel at Erika's Eck in Hamburg Germany
Now, this is a Schnitzel!

During our late-night visit, we shared a massive Viennese style Schnitzel served with veggies and fried potatoes. The cost was €11.90 which worked out to €5.80 each. Adventurous eaters can ramp up their meal with ‘gourmet’ Schnitzels including a Hawaiian version with pineapple and a Gypsy version with paprika sauce.

Erika Eck’s menu includes dishes like Goulash, Currywurst and Argentinian Steak. Hardcore bargain hunters will be happy to find sandwiches for just €1 after midnight.

Pro Tip
You can order food to be delivered if you have late night hunger pangs but don’t want to get dressed.

Erika’s Eck is located at Sternstraße 98, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

The Bird

The Big Crack Burger at The Bird in Hamburg Germany
We had to eat hamburgers in Hamburg. We ate this beauty at The Bird.

Some historians trace the history of cooked ground beef back to Hamburg, so it’s only fitting that Hamburgers, i.e. the people of Hamburg, have embraced what many see as an American sandwich as their own. This history goes back to the 19th century when Hamburgers ate ground beef patties called frikadellen after a long day working at the docks.

But the ground beef patty, originally referred to as a “Hamburg Steak” evolved into today’s world favorite by way of the United States. Where the modern version of the hamburger originated is still debatable, with no definitive history.

Da Birdhouse Burger at The Bird in Hamburg Germany
Open wide! Loaded with two patties, American cheese, bacon, fried onions, ketchup, mustard and pickles, this gloriously greasy burger is a mouthful and a half.

We devoured gargantuan burgers at The Bird, an American style burger restaurant in Hamburg that also serves fried chicken and steak. We opted for griddle burgers during our first visit, specifically Da Birdhouse and The Big Crack. On visit number two, we repeated eating The Big Crack but also tried The Filthy Harry, an enormous grilled burger topped with cheddar and bacon.

Burgers at The Bird typically include German beef, English muffins, fries, lettuce tomato, onion and pickles. Exceptions are the veggie burgers and patty melt.

Pro Tip
Take a hamburger crawl and find your favorite Hamburg hamburger. In addition to The Bird, potential stops include Billy the Butcher, Burger Lounge, Helden & Co. and Shiso Burger.

The Bird is located at Trommelstraße 4, 20359 Hamburg, Germany.

Vienna

Bratwurst at Vienna in Hamburg Germany
Ordering the homemade Lamb Bratwurst with White Bean Cassoulet is a must when you dine at Vienna in Hamburg.

We discovered tiny Vienna the way that we’ve discovered many of our favorite restaurants – while chatting with locals at a third wave coffee shop. In this case, it was Sebastian Kohrs, roaster at Elbgod Röstkaffee, who made what turned out to be a great recommendation.

Luckily for us, the intimate bistro does not take reservations. Since we arrived before 6 pm, we were able to nab the very last table. Otherwise, we would have had to kill time by drinking sparkling wine at the restaurant’s compact wine bar. We would have won either way.

Wiener Schnitzel at Vienna in Hamburg Germany
Vienna also serves top-notch Wiener Schnitzel that pairs nicely with wine.

The menu at Vienna features hearty European dishes including several Austrian classics. During our meal, we embraced the Austrian theme and shared Lamb Bratwurst with Cassoulet and Wiener Schnitzel with potato salad.

We gobbled down the Bratwurst flavored with ingredients like cinnamon, cardamom and garlic, but Vienna’s Wiener Schnitzel may have been the best we’ve ever tasted with its light, crusty breading surrounding a juicy, pounded center.

Dessert at Vienna in Hamburg Germany
Don’t skip dessert at Vienna. We ended our meal with a satisfying plate of dumplings served with roasted plums.

All good meals eventually come to an end, and we finished our Vienna dinner with Topfenknödel, fried sweet dumpling-like fritters, served with roasted plums. Though we were pleasantly full, we scraped every last bite of the cloud-like balls before floating back to our hotel room.

Pro Tip
Skip beer when you dine at Vienna. Instead, order from the restaurant’s extensive wine list.

Vienna is located at Fettstraße 2, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

Café Paris

Cafe Paris in Hamburg Germany
Located in an art nouveau space in the center of town, Cafe Paris is a great spot to eat French cafe fare.

Francophiles who visit Hamburg will want to high tail it to Café Paris for a meal. At least that’s what we did.

Café Paris is a typical French bistro located in a glorious 19th-century building near the Rathaus. The restaurant’s art nouveau design and excellent food make this French café special.

Beef Tartare at Cafe Paris in Hamburg Germany
Cafe Paris is known for its Tartares. We ate this Tartare du Chef while sitting at the bar.

Locals and tourists alike flock to Café Paris from breakfast to dinner to eat classic Parisian food. We chose to sit at the bar, a perfect spot for an excellent night of dining and relaxation.

When choosing among the menu’s French classics, we had to try the restaurant’s Tartare. This is a dish we typically eat at restaurants in Paris.

Had it not been so crowded, we may have ordered the a la minute version prepared at the table (or in our case the bar) for a couple extra euros. Instead, we let the chef prepare our meaty meal in the kitchen and deliver it to us ready to eat.

Pro Tip
Drink like you’re French at Café Paris. We drank Cider from Normandy and Pastis from Marseilles. We also recommend wine, of course.

Café Paris is located at Rathausstraße 4, 20095 Hamburg, Germany.

L’Orient

Mazza at L'Orient in Hamburg Germany
Holy Mazza! The starters at L’Oriente were the stars of our meal.

Germany’s obsession with Middle Eastern food is no secret. Home to thousands of Doner Kebab shops, this European country rivals Turkey in its love for the carnivorous street food.

With a Lebanese menu that transcends kebabs, L’Orient prepares a fabulous range of classic Middle Eastern dishes for both dinner and lunch. On Sundays, the restaurant hosts a popular brunch starting at 10 am as well.

Falafel at L Orient in Hamburg Germany
At L’Orient, the Falafel comes with a flavorful sauce, salad and a basket of pita bread.

We started our lunch with L’Orient’s Mazza, a melange of six tasty bites that whetted our appetites for more. We then shared Falafel and housemade Lamb Wurst, both beautifully plated and served with fresh salad.

Pro Tip
Call ahead and make a reservation since L’Orient tends to book up in advance especially for dinner and Sunday brunch.

L’Orient has two Hamburg restaurants. We ate at the location at Osterstraße 146, 20255 Hamburg, Germany.

Marend

Dumplings at Marend in Hamburg Germany
The Beef Goulash with Cheese Dumplings at Marend made us happy. Perhaps we need to visit Austria to eat this dish at the source.

Eating at Marend transported us to the Austrian mountains without the necessity of booking a train. Sure, Austria isn’t that far from Hamburg in miles, but Tyrolean cuisine is just as unique as other global food in Hamburg.

Isidro Alarcon and Lisa Dialer, the married owners of Marend, bring an international perspective to the Hamburg restaurant they originally opened in 2014. Alarcon hails from Argentina and Dialer comes from Tyrol, Marend’s culinary inspiration.

In Tyrol, marend refers to snack foods. Don’t let the restaurant name confuse you since the hearty plates at Marend are quite filling when paired with farmhouse bread and salad.

Daryl at Marend in Hamburg Germany
The dumplings at Marend are enormous, not that we’re complaining.

During our meal, we shared a plate of Rindsgulasch mit Käsknöde which translates to Beef Goulash with Cheese Dumplings. The luxuriously soft, cheesy dumplings filled us up and whisked us to the Alps.

Europeans are masters of slow cooking and the goulash was no exception with melt in your mouth chunks of meat in a sauce possibly flavored with allspice and cloves. However, since the ingredients of the stew remain a closely guarded secret, these spices are an educated best guess.

Pro Tip
Take advantage of Marend’s happy hour if it’s in effect during your visit.

Marend has two Hamburg restaurants. We ate at the original restaurant located at Feldstraße 29, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

Restaurant Heldenplatz

Himachi at Heldenplatz in Hamburg Germany
This Himachi starter at Heldenpplatz delighted us with its bright flavors and range of textures.

Heldenplatz, which literally translates to Place of Heroes, is a chef-driven restaurant popular within the restaurant industry due to its late hours. Yes, this is a Hamburg restaurant where servers, bartenders and other diners can order upscale Hamburg cuisine as late as midnight.

Meal highlights were Hamachi flavored with sesame mayo dollops and a plate featuring decadently rich Bresse Pigeon. Cooked rare, the juicy, plump game paired nicely with a combination of elderberry fruit and pistachio purée.

Though we were pleased with the quality of the food we ate at Heldenplatz, we were less satisfied with the surly server who seemed annoyed by questions about the food and our inability to speak German. We were also irked that the English menu specified “TIP is not included” whereas the German menu stated that “all prices in Euro incl. 19% VAT and service.”

Pro Tip
Consider ordering wine instead of water at Heldenplatz. We were charged €14 (or €7 each) for one generic bottle of sparkling water during our meal. Ouch!

Restaurant Heldenplatz is located at Brandstwiete 46, 20457 Hamburg, Germany.

Hamburg Cafes and Dessert Spots

Cake and Fork at Herr Max in Hamburg Germany
Save room for dessert when you visit Hamburg! We ate this luscious cake at Herr Max.

Hamburg has plenty of cafes for food travelers who want to sample typical German desserts. These are our favorite sweet spots in Hamburg:

Die Kleine Konditorei

Chocolate Franzbrotchen at Die Kleine Konditorei in Hamburg Germany
Die Kleine Konditorei bakes a Franzbrotchen with chocolate in addition to their standard pastries.

Don’t be fooled by Die Kleine Konditorei’s name which translates to the little pastry shop. There’s nothing little about the pastries sold at this local Hamburg bakery chain.

Die Kleine Konditorei bakes a variety of breads and pastries, but crowds queue to buy one or more Franzbrötchen, Hamburg’s iconic pastry.

Discover more than 100 of the best desserts around the world.

For those who have yet to visit Hamburg, the famed Franzbrötchen is a flat, sweet cinnamon bun that’s almost a mashup of a French Croissant and a Finnish Korvapuusti. The team at Die Kleine Konditorei bakes the popular pastries daily, ensuring fresh Franzbrötchen for every customer.

Pro Tip
Stop by Die Kleine Konditorei after you eat lunch at L’Orient. The walk will just take you a few minutes.

Die Kleine Konditorei has multiple Hamburg bakeries. We ate our Franzbrötchen at the bakery located at Osterstraße 176, 20255 Hamburg, Germany.

Herr Max

Herr Max in Hamburg Germany
Herr Max is a happy place in Hamburg.

Good things wait behind large picture windows that separate Herr Max from a busy sidewalk. This is a cafe where friends meet to share conversations while eating tasty treats and drinking hot coffee. What could be wrong with that?

Upon entering, customers are bound to be struck by Herr Max’s shabby chic design and wafts of sweet smells drifting from the kitchen in the back. But the real excitement begins at the glass counter filled with a colorful assortment of cakes and other goodies.

Cake at Herr Max in Hamburg Germany
Who needs icing when naked cake looks like this at Herr Max in Hamburg?

During our first visit, Herr Max was bustling with Christmas shoppers in need of a rejuvenating break. Our visit a few months later was more relaxed, allowing us to chat with two gregarious gentlemen intrigued by our food photography antics.

All conversation temporarily halted as we dug into a slice of naked cake layered with raspberries inside and topped with decorative marzipan. Moments like these require silence and attention.

Pro Tip
Devoted cake lovers can take classes at Herr Max. Be sure to register in advance.

Herr Max is located at Schulterblatt 12, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

Eisliebe

Spaghettieis at Eisliele in Hamburg Germany
While our Spaghettieis at Eisliebe didn’t entirely resemble spaghetti, we had not complaints about the ice cream dessert sundae’s sweet strawberry sauce or thick white chocolate shavings.

Our search for Spaghettieis led us to Eisliebe in Hamburg’s Ottensen neighborhood. Not only did we find German ice cream sundaes inspired by pasta, but we also found one of the city’s cutest ice cream shops with a name that translates to ice cream love.

Open since 2000, the team at Eisliebe sources local, seasonal ingredients for the dozen flavors it produces each day. These ingredients include spring kumquats, summer strawberries and autumn plums while flavors run the gamut from simple vanilla to more fanciful combinations.

We couldn’t help but notice that we weren’t the only ones ordering Spaghettieis the day of our visit. We also weren’t the only ones leaving the tiny shop with smiles on our faces.

Pro Tip
Plan ahead and pre-order an ice cream cake if you’re celebrating a special occasion in Hamburg.

Eisliebe has two Hamburg locations. We visited the Ottensen ice cream shop located at b. d. Reitbahn 2, 22763 Hamburg, Germany.

Bonscheladen

Candy at Bonscheladen in Hamburg Germany
Candy is dandy at Bonscheladen in Hamburg.

Food travelers with a sweet tooth won’t want to miss Bonscheladen in Hamburg’s Altona neighborhood. This candy shop makes and sells a wide selection of Bonsche or sweets that will tempt shoppers to buy enough to enjoy both now and later.

Adding a fun twist, shoppers can watch the Bonscheladen team make Bonsche from scratch. Visit in the afternoon for a front-row view but check the shop’s website first for exact times.

Pro Tip
Buy extra candy to enjoy later or to give as edible gifts.

Bonscheladen is located at Friedensallee 12, 22765 Hamburg, Germany.

Flané

Frische Waffle mit Puderzucker at Flane in Hamburg Germany
A fresh Waffle with powdered sugar is the perfect Hamburg afternoon snack.

Located in the gorgeous Levantehaus building, Flané sells a dizzying array of sweet treats including chocolate bonbons, cakes and waffles. The shop creates most of its products from scratch, ensuring high quality as well as freshness.

Cafe guests can enjoy cake and coffee in the building’s atrium. However, many choose to order a waffle instead.

Pro Tip
Follow your nose to Flané. The sweet aromas will lead the way.

Flané is located at Mönckebergstraße 7, 20095 Hamburg, Germany.

Hamburg Drinks

Cocktail and Dice at Drilling in Hamburg Germany
You don’t need luck of the dice to find a good drink in Hamburg. We drank this cocktail crafted with gin and elderberry infused green tea at Drilling.

Party people will find no lack of drinking establishments in Hamburg from seedy bars on the Reeperbahn to beer halls serving cheap brews by the keg. For better or worse, we don’t recommend any of these spots for those looking to imbibe German drinks like beer and wine as well as coffee and cocktails.

Whether we’re at home or traveling, we perfer to frequent bars and third wave coffee shops where we can actually hear each other. These are our favorite spots to drink in Hamburg:

Hamburg Coffee Shops

Flat White at Blanco Cafe in Hamburg Germany
Hamburg’s coffee scene ranks among the best in the world.

Hamburg’s relationship with coffee goes long and deep. The most active port city in Germany has been a leader in the coffee bean trade for centuries and opened its first coffee shop in the 1600s.

Read our Hamburg cafe guide.

Not to exaggerate, but we were blown away by Hamburg’s specialty coffee scene and have too many coffee shops to recommend in this guide. That’s why we published a cafe guide with more than a dozen great coffee shops in Hamburg.

Pro Tip
Skip drinking coffee at your Hamburg hotel and drink your morning joe at one of the city’s excellent coffee shops instead. Life is too short for mediocre coffee!

Excellent coffee shops are located all over Hamburg.

Hamburg Cocktail Bars

Cocktail at Drilling in Hamburg Germany
The cocktails at Drilling are works of mixology art.

As one of Germany’s wealthiest and most sophisticated cities, Hamburg has a classy cocktail scene that permeates the city from one end to the other. Though some of the city’s best cocktail bars are hidden in plain sight, it’s worth the extra effort to find them.

Drilling
Mixologist at Drilling in Hamburg Germany
Gunnar Kaack expertly crafts cocktails at Drilling, one of Hamburg’s top cocktail bars.

Tucked in the former storage unit of a converted marzipan factory, Drilling is a cocktail bar that warrants a special trip on the U-Bahn. Once we found this cocktail gem, we didn’t want to leave.

Part of our infatuation revolved around Gunnar Kaack, Drilling’s talented bar manager. Not only did Kaack create some of the tastiest cocktails we’ve ever experienced, but he also shared his mutual love for travel while we chatted at the bar.

Saturday Morning Cocktail at Drilling in Hamburg Germany
We drank this Saturday Morning cocktail at Drilling on a Saturday night.

We tried four cocktails, all of them winners, but the best was Saturday Morning. Inspired by Momofuku Milk Bar’s Christina Tosi, Kaack topped Drilling’s take on the whiskey sour with cornflake cereal milk and added an emulsion with juices, white chocolate, olive oil and white vermouth.

Patrons at Drilling can order off the menu or roll the die to select their cocktails. They can also check out the gin distillery located behind the bar which features a beautiful new brass still and spacious event space.

Pro Tip
Try Clockers Gin when you’re at Drilling. Better yet, book a two-hour gin tasting for the full experience.

Drilling is located at Friesenweg 4, 22763 Hamburg, Germany.

Clockers
Clockers in Hamburg Germany
Dimly lit Clockers is one of the hippest cocktail bars in Hamburg.

Walking into Clockers is like walking into a fairyland adorned with sparkling lights and moss-covered walls. However, the true wizardry at Clockers exists inside its glasses.

Although affiliated with Drilling, Clockers has a distinctly different personality. While Drilling is in a factory space outside of the center of town, centrally located Clockers has a darker, speakeasy-like atmosphere. Both are friendly yet sophisticated bars – ideal for enjoying an excellent cocktail or two.

Cocktail at Clockers in Hamburg Germany
Fresh ginger added the finishing touch to our Sweet & Spicy cocktail at Clockers.

Based on barkeep Lena Hūhnl’s expert advice, we ordered the Sweet & Spicy – a cocktail with morning dew infused Clockers Gin, Ginger Liqueur and Chili-Tincture. Not cheap at €10.50, this cocktail was worth every penny.

Pro Tip
Stop by Drilling early in the evening if you want to enjoy cocktails before the crowds arrive – especially on weekend nights.

Clockers is located at Paul-Roosen-Straße 27, 22767 Hamburg, Germany.

Craft Beer in Hamburg

Beer at The Bird in Hamburg Germany

The Hamburg craft beer scene is hopping… pun intended.

Hamburg has a beer history that dates back to the middle ages, so it makes perfect sense that beer is readily available throughout the city. Non-discerning beer drinkers can easily find cheap beer made by large producers at bars, restaurants and cafes pretty much everywhere.

However, beer drinkers looking for quality craft beer will have no problem finding the ‘good stuff’ in Hamburg. The modern beer movement has invaded Northern Germany and cannot be stopped.

ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten
UberQuell Brauwerkstatten in Hamburg Germany
Thank goodness we brought our appetites to ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten. The riverside taproom’s beer and pizza are the real deal.

The brewers at ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten produce craft beer at its taproom in Hamburg. Top beers include their Original, Imperial Stock, Pale Ale, IPA and White IPA brews.

Beyond the five ‘hero’ beers listed above, ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten brews a range of seasonal and experimental beers. During our visit, we particularly enjoyed the seasonal Honey Brown Ale and the experimental Quasimono.

Pizza at UberQuell Brauwerkstatten in Hamburg Germany
In addition to beer, UberQuell Brauwerkstatten serves Neapolitan pizzas in Hamburg.

Beyond brewing beer, ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten makes excellent Neapolitan pies with ovens procured in Italy. After spending a month eating pizza in Naples, we know good pizza when we eat it, and we ate it at ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten.

Pro Tip
Weather permitting, enjoy your beer and pizza on ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten’s outdoor terrace.

ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten is located at St. Pauli Fischmarkt 28-32, 20359 Hamburg, Germany.

Ratsherrn Brauerei
Imperial Pilsner at Ratsherrn Brauerei in Hamburg Germany
Ratsherrn Brauerei is one of Hamburg’s major craft beer players. The brewery distributes beer throughout the city and beyond.

Located next to Elbgold’s coffee roastery in the Schanzenhöfen, Ratsherrn Brauerei is a Hamburg brewery known for its Pilsner brews. In addition to Pilsner, the Hamburg brewery produces a range of craft beers including Zwickels, Pale Ales and IPAs.

We enjoyed Rathserrn Brauerei’s beers at varied spots including Erika’s Eck and ÜberQuell Brauwerkstätten as well as at Altes Mädchen right next to the brewery. Our favorites were Imperial Pilsner and black-as-night Imperial Stout.

Pro Tip
English speakers should visit Rathserrn Brauerei on Fridays when the brewery conducts English tours.

Ratsherrn Brauerei is located at Lagerstraße 30A, 20357 Hamburg, Germany.

Hamburg Markets

Fischmarkt in Hamburg Germany
Hamburg’s Fischmarkt is hard to miss. The grand building is a landmark.

The port city of Hamburg has numerous markets where locals buy food and household items on a daily basis. None are better known than the Fischmarkt and Rindermarkthalle.

The Fischmarkt comes alive every Sunday morning when locals crowd the stalls to buy fresh fish, eat Fischbrötchen and enjoy a festive atmosphere. The Rindermarkthalle is busy six days a week when shoppers come to the former cattle market to buy meat, pastries and other Hamburg food staples.

Food travelers will want to hit both of these famous markets as they traverse the city. We also recommend the following smaller markets:

Hobenköök

Market at Hobenkook in Hamburg Germany
Market vendors at Hobenkook sell a wide selection of regional products.

Off the beaten path in gentrifying Oberhafenquartier, Hobenköök operates as an artisan food market and farm-to-table restaurant in a repurposed warehouse building. Hundreds of local producers sell their wares here.

Products like meat, cheese, fruits, vegetables and cider fill the aisles and glass cases. The markets sources all of these items from producers within 150 kilometers of Hamburg.

Hake at Hobenkook in Hamburg Germany
We ate this plate of Hake with mustard sauce, potatoes, carrots, parsnips and cauliflower during our lunch at Hobenkook.

Helmed by Chef Thomas Sampl, Hobenköök’s restaurant specializes in Northern German food, all prepared with locally sourced, seasonal ingredients. Guests get a front-row view of the action since the open kitchen is right in the middle of the restaurant’s space.

We enjoyed our rustic meal as well as unfiltered beer and specialty coffee brewed with beans from Public Coffee Roasters, a top local roaster. Hobenköök provides an ideal lunch spot if you happen to be wandering along the Hafen (port) city.

Pro Tip
Don’t plan your meal in advance. Hobenköök’s changes its food menu on a daily basis and rotates its coffee program on a monthly basis.

Hobenköök is located at Stockmeyerstraße 43, 20457 Hamburg, Germany.

Mutterland

Mutterland in Hamburg Germany
Mutterland sells a variety of edible delights made in Germany.

Open since 2007, Mutterland sells an impressive selection of local products that will seduce shoppers at every corner of the market. More than a one trick pony, this Hamburg delicatessen chain sells food and drinks to enjoy both on the spot and later.

Mutterland translates to Motherland. Accordingly, Mutterland specializes in selling products made in Germany. The market sources most of these products from smaller producers, guaranteeing a certain level of quality.

Boxes at Mutterland in Hamburg Germany
Local products fill the shelves at Mutterland.

During our visits to Mutterland, we were tempted to buy bottles of gin, bars of chocolate and adorable coffee cups – all local German products. The coffee section was the most tempting though since Mutterland sells beans from top local roasters including Elbgold, Playground and Nord Coast.

Pro Tip
Bring a canvas shopping bag when you shop up at Mutterland and plan to fill it up.

Mutterland has multiple locations in Hamburg.

Hamburg Christmas Markets

Food Vendor at Hamburg Christmas Market
Christmas markets sell all kinds of local food in Hamburg.

Visitors who travel to Hamburg in December will likely spend much of their time eating, drinking and shopping at Christmas markets throughout the city. As in the rest of Germany, the Hamburg Christmas market spectacles are not to be missed.

These markets sell the best local street food as well as all kinds of drinks and desserts. We especially enjoyed eating freshly fried Kartoffelpuffer with apple sauce and drinking mugs of mulled Glühwein. Yum!

Pro Tip
Book a Hamburg hotel early if you plan to visit in December. The city fills with festive tourists at this time of the year.

Christmas markets are located all over Hamburg during the holiday season.

Things To Do in Hamburg

Grosse Freiheit at Night in Hamburg Germany
A cross between New Orleans‘ Bourbon Street and Amsterdam‘s red light district, Grosse Freiheit is a dazzling yet seedy feast for the senses when it comes alive at night.

When you visit Hamburg, you’ll want to explore the city’s waterfront during the day and walk along the electric Grosse Freiheit at night. Check out the following tours if you want to dig deeper:

Plan Your Hamburg Stay

Locks on Bridge in Hamburg Germany
Hamburg has a range of hotels at all price points.

Luxury Hotels

Business and luxury travelers will find a variety of upscale hotels in Hamburg. We recommend using this list of Hamburg hotels to find one that’s most convenient for your needs.

Mid-Range Hotels

If you’re looking at mid-range Hamburg hotels, we recommend the Heikotel am Stadtpark. Located a few blocks from a U-Bahn station, this pleasant Hamburg hotel is situated halfway between the Rathaus and the Hamburg airport.

Budget Hotels

We recommend the Superbude Hotel & Hostel Altona and the Superbude Hotel & Hostel St. Pauli for funky accommodation experiences in the heart of the city.

Apartments

Staying in an apartment is a great option for longer stays and for people who want access to a kitchen.

Hamburg Logistics

S-Bahn in Hamburg Germany
Transportation is the opposite of an issue in Hamburg.

Hamburg is well-positioned to welcome international visitors. Its airport offers connections throughout Europe and is a short distance from the center of town.

Pro Tip
Purchase a Hamburg Card for 1 to 5 days to get unlimited transportation and museum discounts. This card will get you to/from the airport as well as to all recommended restaurants.

Planning Checklist

Heymondo Offer with City View

Get a discounted quote for travel insurance to protect your trip from things like injuries, theft and cancelations. We never travel without protection!

Hungry for More in Hamburg?

Check out our guides with the city’s best brunch spots and coffee shops.

About the Authors

About the Authors

Daryl & Mindi Hirsch

Saveur Magazine’s BEST TRAVEL BLOG award winners Daryl and Mindi Hirsch share their culinary travel experiences and recipes on the 2foodtrippers website and YouTube. The married Food and Travel content creators live in Lisbon, Portugal.

Disclosures

Sponsorship
We thank Come to Hamburg, Hamburg Tourism and Traverse for their assistance during our multiple visits to Hamburg.

Article Updates
We update our articles regularly. Some updates are major while others are minor link changes and spelling corrections. Let us know if you see anything that needs to be updated in this article.

Original Publication Date: March 10, 2019

Hamburg Zanzibar

Wednesday 15th of December 2021

This post made me hungry! I’ll definitely be bookmarking this for a future trip to Germany 🙂

Darlene Bover

Friday 26th of April 2019

How do I get a Hamburg card?

Daryl and Mindi Hirsch

Sunday 28th of April 2019

You can click on the link in the article to purchase a Hamburg card.

Alli

Saturday 16th of March 2019

This post made me hungry! I'll definitely be bookmarking this for a future trip to Germany :)