Kochfreunde.com is the culinary magazine of Oliver Wagner. Here, everything revolves around the almost most beautiful thing in the world: good food. The focus ranges from reports on exciting restaurants to recipes from his own kitchen, cookbooks and culinary gadgets.


Kochfreunde.com ist das kulinarisches Magazin von Oliver Wagner. Hier dreht sich alles rund um die beinahe schönste Sache der Welt: Gutes Essen. Dabei reicht der Fokus von Berichten über spannende Restaurants bis hin zu Rezepten aus der eigenen Küche, Kochbücher und kulinarische Gadgets.

The flavor menu from Christian Hümbs

Mayit be a little more, was the question of the evening. More creations with the unmistakable signature of Christian Hümbs, Pâtissier of the Year and guardian of all things sweet at Restaurant Haerlin. And who can seriously say no to that. Within a few hours, the seats for the first – and the two even later in the year following evenings were fully booked.

And since a special dinner calls for a special location, we did not dine in the restaurant, but one floor below in the Butchery with a direct view of the huge kitchen, which is usually directed by Christoph Rüffer. It was a great sign of confidence that he handed over the restaurant, the team and the scepter exclusively to Christian Hümbs that evening. In any case, it’s proof of openness to regular change and a commitment to constantly reinventing oneself and breaking new ground.

A novelty was on this evening also the beverage company, because instead of wine and champagne it went first rather alcohol-free. To start with an aperitif of Terra Tulsi tea, which then also accompanied the first amuse in a classic brewed version. And in the process fit quite perfectly and supported the delicate flavors of pumpkin, coconut and tarragon.

Amuse: pumpkin, coconut, tarragon, vanilla vinegar

The first official course, a beautiful combination of rhubarb, parsley, verbena and sourdough was served along with a pHenomenal tonic with rhubarb. A great tonic, actually a syrup, from which you can conjure up your own tonics. Directly from Hamburg.

In principle, this first course already embodied directly the essence of what one can hope for from Christian Hümb’s Pâtisserie: An extremely delicate plate, the great, balanced play of flavors, textures and temperatures, the new interpretation of products to an exciting and only gradually decodable complete work. Famos. It can go on like this.

Rhubarb, parsley, verbena, sourdough

And it goes. With a current classic, which is extraordinarily unfortunate pictorially captured here, but can be admired for example in this video at the colleagues of the Sternefresser in its creation: Sushi.


This is followed by one of my favorites of the evening, a very creamy plate of potato and Fromage Blanc, composed with pleasantly low sweet hints, with slight acidity from the green apple. To my great delight, the beverage accompaniment in this case then swings towards wine after all, a glass of Fontanasanta Manzoni Bianco to be precise.

Potato, dill, green apple, fromage blanc

The small petitesse served as an intermediate course didn’t even make it onto the menu card, but was received all the more enthusiastically at our table. Simple but to the point: a Beurre blanc ice cream, accompanied by a leaf of lettuce. Wonderfully fresh and yet testifying to a deep clear aroma.

Beurre blanc ice cream, salad

The main course of the evening followed the highly appreciated, but overall somewhat repetitive game of textures in the menu sequence. He again relied on spheres, but still seemed a bit unbalanced as the only plate. Whereby the tomato is ideal as a protagonist, of course, it brings directly sweet and sour textures to the plate. Light hints of smoke add depth. Overall, this dish reminded me conceptually of the Douglas fir I chose as part of a menu at Haerlin the other day, though I liked the latter a bit better. This course was accompanied by an Old Tom Chocolate Beer, a wonderful combination, though a little less acidity in the dish might have made the pairing a bit more approachable.

Tomato (grilled), cardamom, dark chocolate, maple balsamic jus, juniper
fennel, cranberry, sandalwood, yogurt, honey

The last course of the evening visually followed the classic dessert associations and increased the sweet portions noticeably, but at the same time seemed very fresh and light. A delicate crunch combined with yogurt, honey and sandalwood. The slight acidity of the apple Secco served seemed very appropriate. Why this found its way to our table exclusively in a non-alcoholic version, however, was not really clear to us.

Finally, some petit fours were served in hearty style.

Hearty macarons and profiteroles

One cannot tip one’s hat low enough to the great craftsmanship and innovation that emanates from Christian Hümbs’ cuisine. Future courses from the pâtisserie will have to measure up to these impressions – and they will truly not have it easy.

I am also very pleased that such a traditional house as the Haerlin allows the space for these experiments. The entire team seemed so pleasantly free, open and relaxed that evening anyway – it was a great pleasure for us.

The menu.
The menu.
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