As anyone with a job and friends knows it can be almost impossible to balance them both and not lose contact with friends. Because of this a few of us try to have a regular get together, though these days they tend to me more irregular meet ups. As food and drink lovers we also use them as a way to try new places. So on Wednesday, as one of our irregular meet ups myself and some friends went out for some food. The original plan was to go to Padella, however when my friends arrived there about 17:40 they found a rather large queue at the door (as with many London hotspots, you cannot book at Padella). So instead they diverted to Katzenjammer.
Katzenjammer is a German style “bierkeller” and restaurant. It’s located just next to Borough Market under The Hop Exchange, so is great for either a quick drink or a nice sit, eat and drink.
We grabbed a table near the bar (because that’s the best place to sit, obviously) and started to peruse the menu. I was feeling particularly hungry so went for the sausage platter; selection of five sausages served on a bed of sauerkraut or red cabbage. Can you really order anything else in a German beer hall? I also got a side of fries for us all to nibble (those of you with girlfriends will know why). My companions got the Jager Schnitzel (hunter style schnitzel with a dark mushroom sauce), spätzle (Bavarian pasta with cheese and onions) and a small sausage plate.
I love this style of German food. It may be massively clichéd but it is so ridiculously tasty and satisfying when you’re having beer. The food was delicious. I started to struggle towards the end but I persevered and defeated the plate. Each sausage was different and brought something new. The thinner pfefferbeisser and paprikawurst were the stars of the platter; they were denser, slightly chewier sausages, which pack ridiculous amounts of flavour. While the sauerkraut and red cabbage accompaniments were excellent and provided that sharpness that cuts through the shear quantity of meat when you need a break from it.
The Jager Schnitzel was crispy and a little dry but the mushroom sauce saved it. The spätzle was nicely cooked but massively under seasoned for my taste (and for my friends. He spent most of the meal adding salt and pepper to it!) All in all the food was very good in its Germanic heartiness and I’d eat there again without hesitation.
The other reason we were there was, of course for beer! By the time we left 3 different beers had been ‘sampled’; Paulaner hefe-weissbier dunkel (dark wheat beer), Rosarda (Belgian rose beer made with summer berries) and Floris Apple (delicious Belgian fruit beer made with apples). All of these beers were excellent and that was barely scratching the surface of the selection of beers. Yet another reason for returning to Katzenjammers.
Katzenjammers is highly recommended. The food, drink and location make it a real winner.
This article is a reworked version of an article that the author originally posted on his blog Shakey Eats
London Lamppost score – 4/5
The Hop Exchange
24 Southwark Street
London SE1 1TY