I met some friends for dinner a couple of weeks ago. After much deliberation, we decided to try out Heimwerk in Schwabing – the Süddeutsche had published a fairly positive review (ok, in retrospect, not that positive) of the new restaurant, the photos on the website were appealing and they’ve dedicated a section to slow food. It looked kind of promising.


Heimwerk is located in what was Egger’s, an average pub that did burgers, schnitzel and soups and salads. Unfortunately, Heimwerk hasn’t managed to distance its interior design from that of its predecessor – it has been lovelessly and unimaginatively decorated. Still, if food and service is good, I can forgive the underwhelming furnishings.

We ordered a bottle of wine to share, a Schneider Ursprung Cuvee (31 €). Our waitress arrived, announced that we didn’t need to try it because it had a screw cap, and sloshed it into our glasses. Now maybe this is pedantry, but I like the ceremony of trying the wine beforehand, screw cap or cork. Nonetheless, the wine was delicious.

Orders are put on a swipe card, a la Vapiano, for reasons unknown. It doesn’t speed up the process at all – it’s not a huge restaurant, and paying at the table would be just as quick as waiting at the desk at the end. Anyway, our waitress dealt with the card, curtly reprimanding us for it being on the wrong end of the table (she’d placed it there herself).

Three of us chose to order from the menu tapas-style – you can order two “snacks” for around the same price as one main. I ordered the spinach dumpling and a Münchner schnitzel. Admittedly, they’re not two dishes that go particularly well together, but none of the options really did work well together. If you do order a main, do note that you have to order extras (potato salad etc) separately, otherwise you could very well end up with one lonely schnitzel on your plate.

The food was underwhelming. The schnitzel was fine, but the spinach dumpling was dry and tasteless. The very best Spinatknödel I’ve had was in Zum Kloster, in Haidhausen – a buttery, decadent lunch, eaten on a beautiful spring day six years ago. It was so good, I still remember it. Heimwerk’s dumpling didn’t even come close – it was one of the least memorable I’ve had.

The waitress whizzed past, barking “passt alles?” on her way to see other guests, not stopping to hear our response.

And so we decided to move on, to a bar with more of an atmosphere and friendlier service. Oh Munich, will you ever be home to exciting, progressive restaurants with good food and good service? Is that too much to ask?

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