Revisited: Asia Deli

Discovering this spot last summer was a very important moment for me and made my life instantly better – sublime Chinese food at very affordable prices in a run-down deli on Wedding’s Seestraße: Asia Deli became my summer-love, to which I returned time and time again, each time with loads of friends to make sure we’d be able to taste as many dishes as possible. Alas, many romances end as fast as they start. When I heard that the original chef had left at the end of last Autumn and disappointed eaters reported a decline in quality, I intuitively knew it was never gonna be the same. This is maybe why I waited so long to return myself, too scared to face the facts. It’s only food, you say? Why the drama, you ask? This must mean you’ve never eaten at Asia Deli before November 2014 and the only thing I can say is: I’m sorry you missed this.

When I went back a couple weeks ago (I didn’t even dare to break the news instantly but had to wait a few days to let it sink in…), I was happy to see they still offered the same bright red menu and went on to order my former favorite: the vegetarian version of the fish-fragranced aubergine.
It was fine.

However, it used to be great! It used to induce all those food-endorphins, all that bliss, all that joy that divine food is able to create in your mouth, belly, heart and soul. Yes, I might exaggerate, but some of you will know what I am talking about (I’m hoping…) Returning to a place that was once able to do that but isn’t anymore is just… sad.
It’s obviously highly unfair to order only one dish to write this spot off, but I couldn’t order more and I probably won’t come back (too much drama?). Unless one of you eager eaters reports a change of quality. They’ve done it once again, why shouldn’t they be able to return to their former glory? Summer is coming!

Asia Deli
Seestraße 41
13353 Berlin Wedding

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Subway: Seestraße
49 30 45084219

Opening Hours:
Mon–Sun 12:00–23:00

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  1. mibla on

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    Let’s find this chef!

    1. Mary Scherpe on

      as far as I know, he went back to China…

  2. Neela on

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    nice Article :D

  3. Jeff on

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    Revisited this week, still good…

  4. Jacob & Marco on

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    Dear Mrs Scherpe,

    first, some background information. We’ve moved to Seestr (20m from Asia Deli) about three years ago. At the time, one of us had the unlucky idea to order something from the black menu. We banned the place for about 2 years, making large radius turns around it when passing by. Last summer, a collegue of mine invited me to Asia Deli, “being so near from yours” he said. I thought it was a bad joke. Well, turned out he had read about it in your blog, so we went and were – as a matter of course – blasted away by Asia Deli’s concept and quality. The secret red menu, the lil veggie dishes, the authentic atmosphere – the all inclusive package you get only here. Absolutely mindblowing. Since then, not one week has passed without anyone of our WG passing there around 3 times/week (in sum of us all). We are safe to assume that we can assess one of the most accurate reviews of this place.

    So, coming to speak about your last review, we have a lil bone to pick with you. As you stated in the last part, it is kinda unfair to assume Asia Deli serves the same way every day. In the last 100 visits, we noted that quality is never the same, sometimes being absolutely outstanding, to sometimes where simple cooking errors like overcooking and oversalting were easily made (also out of stress of a full place). Sometimes we had our best chance by taking a table for 10 being able to choose as much dishes as possible and be absolutely delighted, other times being 10 on a table turned out to be a very bad idea, with dishes coming in late, in weird orders (an egg soup coming in after desert). Nevertheless, this is exactly what we go for: authentic serendipity – you never know what you get! And we are still going over and over, sometimes literally running home to tell our room-mates about how amazing C5 was today, other times just asking ourselves why he kept the dumplings in there for so long. To conclude, we still believe this place is amazing for authenticity, simplicity and surprise.

    Some pro tips to maximize your chances: always check if the chef with the white suit is in the kitchen before entering (he is by far the best of the actual staff), avoid sundays and, if you want the steamed dumplings, order them as you enter the place (so you won’t wait ages for them). Ah, and nearly forgot: Give that one black menu another chance! We did find at least a few dishes that were at the level of the red one..

    1. Mary Scherpe on

      I am actually happy to hear they are doing such a great job in keeping you happy! I knew before that they had ups and downs with quality, and mentioned that in my first first review. However, Asia Deli is still serving Chinese food that is totally okay, that’s true, the dish I had wasn’t horrible, it was still nice to have. But it wasn’t close to what we used to have… The reason why I expressed that feeling in this revisited review, is because I used to recommend this place like a crazy person (“This is the best Chinese in BerliN!!!”) and I don’t consider this praise apt anymore and have to row back on that… Asia Deli to me is now a place I enjoy when I am in the area, but I wouldn’t travel across town for it like I used to…

  5. Fritz on

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    Dear Mary,
    where from do you have the information that the chef changed? Have you talked to him or any other person working in Asia Deli? Or is it just word-of-mouth?

  6. Jan on

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    My Chinese (!) wife and I used to eat at the Asia Deli very regularly. The elderly woman who used to run the place has gone back to China, so has the chef. According to the staff they are not coming back. Sadly, that is a fact. Not only have I notices the difference in quality, but my wife refuses to go there, saying that she just can’t eat the food anymore. The problem is that Chinese food is not Chinese food. The menu is still from the Hunan province, but the new chef is from the Shanghai area and has not learned the way to cook the dishes on the menu.
    Very sad…

  7. A D on

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    I had so many expectations after reading your first review on this place…now I regret not doing a new research before going there last night. What happened: First of all 4 out of 5 got a wrong dish served…After getting 2 dishes exchanged for what we actually ordered, we couldn’t be bothered to hustle about the rest. I was going to share a vegetable soup with a friend…they served a fish soup with large chunks of meat in it…so I had to leave it to my friend as I am vegetarian…my friend described the soup as “disgusting” repeating it again and again…Today we are all in pain, bad stomach pain…And I feel sick just thinking of that slimy pakchoi I had there…there was something fishy about it. All the food was soaked in oil and was simply not enjoyable. If you are looking to pay 8,5 Euro for a frozen seafood soup – I’d recommend this place, but in my opinion it’s called “taking the piss”.

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