Later, after a Glühwein and a walk through rainy streets, we ended up with friends at il Giradschi in Oderbergerstraße; I have been a fan of their other pizza place, I Due Forni, for a long time. When I lived on Senefelder Platz, just around the corner from there, I had their "Incredibile" on a regular basis; in summer, on long wooden benches under the trees, in winter in their warm cantina-style restaurant, always busy, always a bit chaotic, with its revolutionary memorabilia and signatures scribbled all over the yellow walls.
Back to il Giradschi last night: Exposed brick and simple wooden tables; vinyl covers and music posters on the walls that reminded me of the room of a teenager (with a good taste of music, nonetheless) Record sleeves double as menus. Our waiter was friendlier and more attentive than any waiter I ever had at I Due Forni, but I was still disappointed. il Giradschi to me was an uninspired version of the restaurant I liked so much; what looks so effortlessly and works so well at I Due Forni seems contrived at il Giradschi.
The food was good. Although the red wine was a bit chilly, the brick-oven pizzas with their paper-thin crust are as as crunchy as it gets in this corner of Prenzlauer Berg. And large - the plates are are too small for these pizzas, which are generously topped with a forest of arugula and crunchy slivers of walnuts, and served with a spicy oil that will make your lips burn.
Still, next time I will make my way down to I Due Forni again.
Oderberger Str. 22, 10435 Berlin
I Due Forni
Schönhauser Allee 12, 10119 Berlin
My review of I Due Forni on about.com