Last night, I was invited to dinner at Wagner German Bakery along Valero Street in Makati. It is located in that newly developed block along Valero that used to be a parking lot… Two Central is one of the new condominium buildings along that stretch of Valero.
I thought, hey, it’s a bakery. Are we going to be eating bread all night?
Well, it turns out that they also serve some really thick, strong coffee. And German food. And of course, beer!
WAGNER GERMAN BAKERY
Wagner German Bakery is owned by the Wagners! Angelo Wagner, a history buff, kept us entertained the whole evening with his stories about the origins of the dishes we had.
The bakery opened a few months ago and serves German bread and food and beer, as authentic as they can make it. It leans a bit towards Austrian-German, especially the coffees.
I started the evening with a pick-me-up, this Grober Brauner (P140), a double mocha with cream on the side. It is served with a glass of water so you can alternate coffee and water between sips. The coffee is a dark roast, pure, rich and thick! The texture is like a rich hot chocolate, only, this is coffee!
Some of my table companions also ordered the Paulaner beer (P290). I took a sip, but since I was driving, alas, I regret that I could not drink more. It was really good beer. Dark, but not bitter. It is flavorful and wheaty, sweet and a little fruity. You have to try it!
We ordered a few dishes to share so that everybody could try everything:
My favorite is the Schnitzel (P550 for pork or chicken, P650 for veal). It’s just a simple breaded and fried slice of meat, but done well. I loved the vinegary potato salad that is served with it. While the entire dish is delicious, I thought the P550 price tag was a bit steep.
We also had the Fiaker Goulash (P460) – this is a satisfying, dark beef stew with the deep flavors of tomato and paprika. This is how imagine beef stew should taste like! It is served with some bread dumplings, a fried chicken sausage shaped into an octopus, and an egg.
This is the Leberkas Burger (P350) – this is basically a meatloaf sandwich / burger with some sauerkraut. The bread used is a heavy bread, like a pretzel or a bagel.
The Käsespätzle (P440) is a thick egg noodle / dumpling, pasta-type dish. This is a very homey and comforting dish, especially if you enjoy the taste of German cheeses like Emmenthaler. I liked it. Eat while warm! If you are not used to the taste of stronger cheeses, you might find the flavor of the cheese to be too overpowering.
No German food affair is complete without sausages! Here, we had the Nurnberger Bratwurste (P430) – this is the typical white breakfast sausage, but I like how they fried it until it’s brown and toasted. I liked pairing it with their sweet mustard. A regular order only comes with 5 sausages, but we requested for 6 pieces since there were 6 of us. The sauerkraut is nicely done, sweet and not too tart. One of our companions thought it was better than atchara.
For dessert, we had the Kaiserschmarrn (P450). The Kaiserschmarrn is also called the Emperor’s Mess. Angelo told us the different stories of how dish this was supposedly invented, you can read them here. This is a rich, moist, fluffy and very sweet, raisin-filled pancake that has been cut up. It is chewier and heartier than the lighter pancakes we are used to.
It is served with Pistachio Ice Cream – pistachio lovers will enjoy this ice cream, it has a more intense than usual pistachio flavor.
The bread at Wagner German Bakery are hearty loaves of bread. The bread is heavy, chewy, complex and crusty! German breads were made to withstand long storage, and the thick crusts helped to ensure that the bread inside was protected from the environment, mold, etc…
We were able to try some and I thought the breads were really good. The flavors are more developed, and the dough is often fermented. Don’t worry, the bread is not sour. It just gives a more complex flavor to the bread. I think the sturdy breads would be perfect for mopping up the sauces from stews like the Fiaker Goulash.
Try Wagner German Bakery for a casual but authentic German meal. Angelo Wagner, who runs the place, grew up in Germany, and here, he is serving the food that he grew up with.
While I find the pricing a bit on the higher side, I get it that we pay a premium for the location and the authenticity of the food.
The breads are made fresh daily, so if you like the hearty German breads, make sure to get them in the morning!
I recommend the beer and the coffee!
Wagner German Bakery
Ground Floor, Two Central Building
109 Valero St., Makati City
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