Over the last almost 30 years Café Berlin has become a Capitol Hill in institution. Opened in 1985 by German born friends who met while working at another local German restaurant, under current owners Rico Glage and Clytie Roberts-Glage it remains a meeting place for Congressional Staffers, neighborhood friends and tourists alike. Café Berlin features the best patio on the Hill, traditional German dishes and seasonal menus made from locally grown ingredients.
In the early eighties Irene Khashan from near Rothenburg aub de Tauber, and Peggy Reed from Lübeck met, became friends and took on the challenge of opening an authentic German restaurant on Capitol Hill. They accomplished this, initially with no staff, doing cooking, cleaning and serving themselves. The neighbor at the time was not the best, despite the proximity to the nation’s capitol. The area was in the process of revitalization but was still a high crime area. They even had a crematorium across the street which necessitated wiping ash from the entire restaurant each morning. Flash forward to 2007 Rico Glage comes from Germany to work for a year at Café Berlin where Clytie Roberts takes a job as a server after working on the Hill for 5 years.
Rico comes from the village of Reinberg in northeastern Germany along the Baltic coast. Clytie is from Killeen, Texas, home to Fort Hood. Both come from food backgrounds. Rico’s mother was a Chef. Clytie grew up in the restaurant and bar business. They married in 2009 before moving back to Texas for two years where Rico served as a Chef at Trace in the Austin W Hotel and Clytie worked for Austin ISD as a special needs teacher. When Peggy and Irene decided to retire, Clytie and Rico were offered the opportunity to buy the restaurant. They took over in February 2013.
Café Berlin offers a varied menu combining German specialties and seasonal dishes, some with a Texas twist, which is not surprising, since Texas boasts one of the largest groups with German and Eastern European ancestry in the United States. All dishes are made from scratch and prepared with care. Rico and the other German chefs in the Café Berlin kitchen strive to make each German dish as authentically German as possible within the limitations permitted by the lack of availability of some ingredients. Since the chefs are each from different regions of Germany customers get the benefit of a wide range of delicious choices in the seasonal selections.
Come dine with us in our invitingly warm dining rooms decorated with German watercolors and political cartoons or have a boot of German beer at our bar. The patio is open year round weather permitting and offers the perfect atmosphere for a romantic evening dinner or a fun afternoon with friends.