As a newcomer, I am still seeking for the good places in Munich. Some are more obvious than others, some you have to hear about. The restaurant in today’s review definitely belongs to the latter category.
In a backyard behind the beautiful buildings of the Ludwig-Maximillian University, you will (maybe) find Terrine. It is carefully hidden in the long passage of the backyard, so I cannot imagine that Terrine gets a lot of guests directly among passers. A recommendation from a colleague let me to the restaurant that has existed here for about 25 years. The restaurant is a sister of the more famous two Michelin-starred Tantris, and for many years, Terrine was a more downscaled bistro. Some years ago, “Bistro” got skipped from the name, as Terrine started aiming for the gourmet-level. Some of the décor, some kitschy Asian lamps with pearls hanging down, stayed on, but besides that the interior is light, simple and nice to be in. In 2008 that resulted in a Michelin star which it kept until the release of the German 2013 Michelin Guide. They lost it due to a change in the kitchen where the former under-chef, Sebastian Heil, got promoted to executive chef. The change happened just briefly before the deadline of the 2013 guide, and therefore Michelin did not have the time to visit the restaurant to see if the level was still worth a star. Terrine received the same reaction from Gault&Millau, another very important guide in Germany, which took the restaurant out of the guide. I guess that the restaurant is really looking forward to be reviewed again in the hope that they can put new stickers on the front door again next year.
Read about the one-starred Tramin Restaurant in Munich
Reasonably lunch prices
We decided to visit the Terrine for lunch after concluding that you can get a set three-course lunch for 28 Euros. With the former rewards of the restaurant in mind, it seemed very reasonably, so we wanted to see if it was actually the case.
At first we received the wine list, which was very tempting. As it was lunch, and even a sunny weather outside, we decided to go for a bottle of Grüner Veltliner from the biodynamic producer Nikolaihof in the Wachau region, Austria (35 Euros). Grüner Veltliner is the national grape variety of Austria, and it always delivers some fresh, crispy white wines with a refreshing acidity; this one too and furthermore it had a slight note of gunpowder smoke, horse barn, minerality, peach, and orange peel. I just love the Wachau white wines.
Read the story about the splendid gourmet restaurant Landhaus Bacher in the Wachau region
Then an amuse bouche arrived. Seared squid was lying on top of purees of chickpeas and peas and some crispy black olive on top. The dish was slightly spicy, and the squid was firm, but tender, a nice beginning.
See how Noma makes squid
The first dish of the menu was mackerel, which was cured in salt, sugar and vinegar. Underneath, was an avocado cream, and in between the pieces of mackerel were pieces of lettuce and radishes. On top, was a tasty and crispy curry breadcrumb? Despite the spices, the mackerel stood out clearly with a clean, fresh taste, and a perfect firm texture.
The oriental touch continued in the main course with a breast of duck with purple couscous (maybe coloured by beetroot), blackberries and green asparagus. The duck was very tender while the asparagus still got that right crispy texture. A rich, flavourful sauce with soy and ginger added the Asian touch, and a nice depth. The couscous had a slightly sharp bitterness to it that I did not enjoy, though. All in all, it was a nice main course, but a bit too safely executed. I missed some personality in this dish.
The dessert, though, was very good. Small pieces of heavy chocolate brownie were accompanied by a cherry sorbet, marinated physalis fruits (their Danish name “pineapple cherries” describes the taste pretty good), and a vanilla sauce. The brownie had a distinct chocolate flavour that was balanced by the intense cherry sorbet, and the acidic psysalis fruits. In the end, the creamy sauce had a strong vanilla flavour – a rather simple dessert, but with lots of taste.
We ended the lunch with a jelly of blood orange where the bitter tone of the fruits was nicely maintained.
A lunch will in most cases be a lighter version of the evening menu of a certain restaurant, which I believe is the case at Terrine as well, so keep that in mind, if you are considering a visit. That said, I left with a satisfied mind and a happy face (thank you, Nikolaihof). With a total price of 100 Euros for two lunch menus, a bottle of wine and mineral water, I can recommend a lunch at Terrine. Do not expect a very experimenting cuisine, but you are in for a nice, savoury meal.
Read more reviews of restaurants in Munich
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