Sage Dinner, Saturday 24 October 2009

Sorry for the lateness in arranging October's dinner but things have been hectic at work and I am one stressed bunny at the moment. Still, I have not forgotten the club and trust that I won't be letting down anyone with this month's event, which is going to be at a cool trendy location, and where the food has been highly-rated by several magazines and some people. Not that I usually care about what other people say but in this instance, I tend to agree.

The menu is simple, the menu is not exactly too cheap either but it does look pretty good, so this month we will be doing our dinner at the Sage Club, a place where they claim to do modern German food well. The place is in a cool location next to a canal, just across from the East Side Gallery at Köpenicker Str. 18-20, 10997 Berlin-Kreuzberg. Nearest U-Bahn is Schlesiches Tor. For those interested in a bit of advance research, the website is

Note that there will be dancing after dinner but it is not compulsory. The Sage Club is one of the premier dance clubs in Berlin, but it is not at all mandatory and people like me usually slope off muttering some excuses when the dance floor opens rather than subject strangers to the indignity of watching my rather spastic moves. However, that is no reason for other people to follow suit so you are very welcome to club away after the dinner.

As it is very short notice, we don't expect too many people to sign up, but that's OK as we have booked only a smallish table so it will be a more intimate event than usual. So if you wish to come along, please drop me an email by Sunday 18 October latest and we will confirm your place by Monday 19 October. So if you have been hankering and wondering about modern German food, well, here is your chance! And if you like dancing, well, even better!

See you all soon!


How it went on the night...

The evening got off to a somewhat weird start - Sage had been expecting another group called the "Wiener Club". Well, whoever those guys were, they either failed to make it beyond the hotdog stand at Ostbahnhof or they turned back leaving the reservation free for the intrepid urban explorers of the Berlin Dinner Club!

The converted warehouse building housing Sage demonstrates that urban renewal does indeed have a future: before being born again as an incredibly spacious restaurant, the former brickwork building had been home to a silk factory and a coffee-roasting warehouse. Hats off to those with the "vision".

Although the place wasn't exactly heaving, it might have been more appropriate to have started with what was left on the menu rather than with what was no longer on it. (And while we're on that topic: belated congratulations to the birthday child and his/her lucky guests who got to enjoy the full menu and the comfortable sofas near the fireplace).

The menu was true to its emphasis on "klein aber fein" (small but nice). The appetisers sounded and were very appetising and it would be simply unchivalrous to the goose not to mention that its fried foie gras was divine. The main menu was, as noted already, somewhat limited in choice. That said, the Wiener Schnitzel was easily the size of Luxembourg, the Spätzle not too bad given that Berlin is a few latitudes north of the Weißwurst-equator and the pizza menu appealed to a number of dinner clubbers.

The wine list could do with some extra padding. What's on offer is good but this is not a place where you could spend hours agonizing over the choice. The relatively small number of options on the wine list simply do not offer up that much opportunity to kill time, even to the alphabetically/alcoholically-challenged. Still, killing time was scarcely a consideration given the number of topics we managed to canter through on Saturday evening. Sage is thus ideal for those who prefer to concentrate on conversation not the menu!

In short: the venue is "Augenschmaus pur", from the intriging wine glass puzzle cabinets at the entrance, through the graffito and left-behind warehouse lifting gear, to the jamón ibérico signalling the way to the tapas and the partially open kitchen. Even the lavatories are worth a visit to see Richard Roger's inside-out principle applied to the plumbing in the very smallest room and, for those tempted to linger, the smallest room also offers the opportunity to mull over the piped in book extracts.

A number of new friendly faces from near and far helped to make this another excellent BDC event.

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