Schweinshaxe, Kaiserschmarr’n and Wein!
Story and photos by Dr. Michael Lim The Travelling Gourmet TM
All rights reserved
The intrepid Travelling Gourmet seeks out German delicacies near the Singapore General Hospital…
MYTH has it that Germans eat only Wurst (sausage) and drink only beer. Nothing is further from the truth. At Magma, arguably Singapore’s only authentic German restaurant, you can enjoy many other Spezialitäten aus Deutschland (German specialities).
“Wilkommen, Der reisende Feinschmecker!” was owner Leonardo Noto’s cheery greeting as I strolled into the converted old Chinese shophouse with wood beamed ceilings. I was privileged to meet Kordula Geier, Sales Director of the famous Juliusspital Winery who was in town. We decided to try the food with her wines and began with the dish invented by Warrior King Genghis Khan, which has become part of German cuisine. Steak Tartare! German-Indonesian Chef Untungs who used to prepare this dish for Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin mixed premium hand chopped raw beef tenderloin with capers, onions, pickles and raw egg yolk to be relished with brown bread. Pale gold minerally Juliusspital 2009 Scheurebe Franken wine went own a treat with the juicy beef. Spargel! This German delicacy of white asparagus air-flown from Beelitz in Brandenburg tasted so yummy caressed with Hollandaise sauce. It has a natural sweetness and lovely juicy texture. It is only available from April to June each year. Pflammkuchen This is Germany’s answer to pizza with a super thin crispy crust topped with onions, sour cream plus crispy Speck (bacon). Pflammkuchen actually means “cake baked in flames”. A miraculous match was Goethe’s favourite wine, namely Würburger Stein Riesling Kabinett 2008 with petroleum hints. As I munched happily, Leonardo told me, “My father was born in Sicily and my mother is German. I grew up in Aachen and Berlin. I wanted to have a restaurant where people can enjoy authentic German food.”
Herta Heuwer invented this out of necessity, surviving the hard times after WW2 at her Imbissstand on the corner of Kaiser Friedrich Straße. This was in the Charlottenburg district in British occupied war devastated Berlin, near the ‘Red Light’ area. She managed to get Tomato Ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and Curry Powder from the British soldiers and created this simple yet wonderfully tasty dish on 4th. September, 1949. She even patented her sauce called Chillup in 1951! Her Street Snack stall sold 10,000 servings per week at its height. Incidentally, in German, “Es ist mir Currywurst” means “I don’t give a damn!”
Good taste is a gift to be treasured! Eat well, drink well and be happy. Enjoy!
The Travelling Gourmet’s Ratings
Ambience 3.5* Cuisine **** Service 3.5*
Magma German Restaurant
located in Chinatown
2-4 Bukit Pasoh Road
(near New Majestic, OSO and Absinth)
Outram Park, Exit H, Teo Hong Road (200 m)