There’s a little inconspicuous deli on Wilmersdorfer Straße which you should add to your list of great Italian pasta places in Berlin. Granted, not many of us (and the least of all me) venture out to the uncharted culinary territory of Charlottenburg, but maybe we should do so more often, as my visit to the the family-run business “Il Tortellino D’Oro” proves.

Il Tortellino D’oro is as authentically Italian as it gets: handmade, fresh pasta that you can buy to go or eat for lunch (and sometimes for dinner), a wonderfully quirky business owner from the northern regions of Italy, and her charming parents behind the counters.

The place is small and practical, refreshing in its lack of contemporary decor. It may not be as cozy and warm as other restaurants (i.e. Goldener Hahn in Kreuzberg, my favorite Italian restaurant in Berlin), but it’s almost shockingly authentic. That’s the kind of restaurant you discover in the outskirts of Bologna while you’re looking for something eat during afternoon nap time. And since we’re already on the topic of authenticity, don’t expect the three hosts at Tortellino D’oro to speak German (or much English for that matter). If you watched the last season of Master of None, you should be just fine speaking culinary Italian though.

Pasta and wine at Il Tortellino D’Oro

The restaurant isn’t always open after 8pm, it’s primarily a lunch spot. We made reservations for dinner, which meant that the restaurant would stay open – but the menu was already pretty thin by the time we arrived.

We ordered a bottle of vino, Bruschetta for starter and two pasta dishes (Trofie with Chanterelle and Tagliatelle with Salmon). Needless to say: everything is fresh and homemade. We were quite convinced by the Bruschetta, and the pasta was great, although not perfect. The Trofie were a bit too al dente and the salmon pasta was made with smoked salmon, something that hadn’t been communicated when we ordered.

Despite these flaws, I don’t doubt the high standard with which food is prepared here. Just sitting there and listening to the hectic cackling of Leti and her parents catapults you to a wonderful place in Italy.

I was already completely wooed by the food and the atmosphere, but it was the creamy, delicious and perfect Espresso that finally won my heart over. Leti uses the Guizzardi coffee from Bologna, one of the best brands of Italian coffee. I’ve never tasted an Espresso like this, I swear. It was mild and without any hint of bitterness; almost like a hot cocoa rather than coffee. Paired with a piece of cake for dessert, of course.