Entering Kollektiv, a small restaurant on a corner at Karl-Liebknecht-Straße 72, felt to me like stepping into my grandparents house. Everything from furniture to cutlery is from 60s-70s era, resembling the same as at my grandparents house. The same can probably be said about thousands of other ex-Soviet households.
Leipzig was East Germany, formally the German Democratic Republic or GDR, was a state within the Eastern Bloc during the Cold War period. From 1949 to 1990, it administered the region of Germany which was occupied by Soviet forces at the end of the Second World War. Like in Estonia, a slight nostalgia seems to have taken over and more and more places can be found with former Soviet plates or household items being put back into use.
Kollektiv is an excellent example. Very comfy chairs, extremely helpful staff and heart-warming food.
The first item on the menu, Köningsberger Klopse, was something very similar to something I used to get for lunch at school at primary school – meatballs in white sauce with capers, boiled potatoes and picked beetroot salad. Maybe not my favourite at the time, but gosh it sounded tasty when I read it from the menu. However, instead I felt adventurous and had a Steak au Four, which was an interesting version of pork steak cooked with onions and cheese sauce. The plate was very considerately divided into quarters, with fried potatoes on one side and peas on the other, making some dominant space for the steak.
It looked something like that:
The meal was very filling and then again you never know when you get to eat again, right. Yet I didn’t have any space for a dessert, which did sound like they were meant for the adventurous type.
They didn’t have any apple tea, which spectacular in Germany, so instead they suggested to prepare me some hot apple juice with a mini compote fruit inside it. Very tasty.
The whole meal for four people with drinks (bottle of wine, beers and digestives) came up to €100, which we though was very reasonable. Once leaving the restaurant, it felt like we’d stepped 30 years into the future. That’s how realistic the whole concept felt.
So if ever in Leipzig. Here’s the link: http://www.gaststaette-kollektiv.de