Hamburg: Alt Hamburger Aalspeicher

During my research on places to eat in Hamburg, Alt Hamburger Aalspeicher kept popping up as a recommended place to have Hamburg specialties, in particular, eel. In general, being so near the sea, Hamburg is well known for its seafood like white fish, shrimps and eel. At first, I was not really sure on how to get to this restaurant. I did not have 3G in Hamburg which made navigating a little tougher, especially on tourist maps. However, during my walking tour, we actually walked right past this restaurant and I recognized the exterior from the millions of pictures that I had seen during my research. The location turned out to be really convenient too! It is actually located just across the bridge leading to Hafen city and the old warehouses (where the Hamburg dungeons and miniature museum is) and it was the perfect lunch place while waiting for my turn to be allowed into the museum.

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I arrived rather early, even before the restaurant was officially opened for lunch (about 15 minutes early). However, the sole waitress was really nice, she gave me the menu to look at while she was getting ready and called me in as soon as she was done. So yes, I was the first customer of the day.

The interior of the restaurant is really cozy. It actually feels like you’re in someone’s home with knick knacks and bookcases scattered around the dining tables.
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The restaurant offers a more tight balcony (really, look at the number of tables they cramped out here…) overlooking a small canal… I didn’t find the scenery that appealing so I chose to sit inside but trust me, when all the other customers started trickling in, everyone chose to sit outside and this was the first part of the restaurant to be filled up.
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To start, I tried their original eel soup or “Aalsuppe”. I was kind of expecting to see a lot of eel in the soup, but it was actually more of a vegetable soup with a few pieces of eel. The soup was tasty and I quite liked the sourish taste of the broth, however not what I was expecting when ordering the “original eel soup”
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For my main, I had the white-herring fillet with apple, onions, cucumber cream sauce and pan-fried potatoes. The fillet had been smoked and went very well with the apple and cucumber cream sauce. I also thought the potatoes were very well done and I liked mixing it with the sauce as well.
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The restaurant did seem very popular, especially among locals. When I left, it was almost full and still it was just that one solo waitress running around the place. She was very efficient, despite the number of customers – so props to her. If one is looking for rustic Hamburg local food, this is certainly the place to try. For what I ate, I paid about €30.

Add: Deichstraße 43, 20459 Hamburg, Germany

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