Last Thursday I had an after work drink planned with two colleagues of mine, one former and one current. We meet every couple of weeks to stay in touch and gossip about the latest rumors in the company. The drinks we had when we met the last time at Motto were so delicious that we decided to make the drinks the happening of the evening and dinner a mere afterthought.Don’t they look lovely? Like a bouquet of liquid lollipops.
A couple of weeks ago a new hotel/restaurant/bar opened at a place where there has always been a well-known party palace. The Sofiensäle are a historical building and not just because I have some personal history with it but also because it has a history. Years ago I attended balls and parties in this building and then one day it all burned down. Fast forward a good decade and the building rises like a phoenix from the proverbial ashes in new splendor.
I can’t say anything about the restoration because I haven’t seen the inside except for the pictures on the website but these look amazing. I am sure they have done a great job. The enclosed restaurant/bar looks definitely new and with memories aplenty of the good times I had here, this was the place where we were headed last Thursday. A new bar means hopefully new drinks and is full of nice looking people and so on and so on. That expectations are the root of all evil is a long-standing wisdom and just proved to be right again.
We didn’t have a reservation and still had a choice on where to be seated (maybe it was the early hour of 6:30pm). We chose a table in the corner and had a good view over the room.
It might sound weird but I was not happy with the light. It might be good lighting for the skin, giving you an even and smooth skin tone, but it is really bad for reading. Although it looks bright enough, it’s not. The menu was kind of blurry and reflecting in the light so that one had to wriggle the menu a bit until one finds the perfect angle to read it. And it was just not me, so this had nothing to do with age because both my colleagues are younger!
The drinks menu then was a disappointment, really little choice and nothing new. So I ordered the only one I didn’t know, a Passion Lemonade which turned out to be good if not great. What was interesting was the size of the ice cubes in the drink which would not melt, at least there was no visible difference to detect even when the drink was finished. Which is great when you don’t want to have your drink watered but it also spoke volumes about the temperature in the restaurant. At the end of the evening I was sitting with my coat around my shoulders. So these pictures are from the beginning then.
Sorry that the pictures are so dark but when we were “flashing” each other we looked like deer caught in the headlights of a car. A lot better without it then.
For the second round of drinks we asked the waiter if he could recommend something. He could not but he sent the bar chef over to help us find the perfect drink. I was in the mood for something with cucumber; do you remember Cucumber Delight? I finally got a picture of it and I have to share it with you because it brings back even better memories.
Anyway, the drink we got was called Persian Delight (something with vodka and ginger beer) and the reference to the cucumber was slice of it inside. How boring was that? For me a cucumber means something refreshing, light, cool and not too sweet. What we got was cloyingly sweet (although I asked especially for it not to be sweet) and spicy. Not a particular attractive combination.
Of course since we were there we also wanted to try their food which was great. We ate the Sardic pasta (with chanterelle and tomatoes) and the “Viennese” burger (blood sausage with horseradish).Both dishes tasted wonderful. Service was attentive, quick and friendly! So for dinner I can recommend it, you might want to bring a shawl though for the draft. When we left “The Room” was a lot more crowded than before but I still had the impression that people come for dinner and then leave for some other place. It’s not really inviting to linger over drinks and it’s not only because of the draft.