Or to put it more bluntly: “DOES SIZE MATTER” ?
In the collection of our dearest memories there is, of course, one of a very tiny restaurant where you and your significant other had that fantastic dinner. The atmosphere was electrifying and you were so in love that you can almost taste the moment when you think of it. For me it was a place in Trastevere, Roma where we enjoyed a perfect pasta dusted with Parmigiano Reggiano and a hazy light courtesy of more than one glass of local white wine.
How much harder is it to come up with such a quality memory of a full, large restaurant. Most of the time disappointment was served for dinner, a sweet slap as desert and a bill telling you never to come there again, ever! So I ask you,”does size matter?”
We are all endeared by the small. From babies to furry puppies, even if they pee on your lap, they remain cute …. It is the science of life playing tricks with us, and we love it. Playing by natures laws it is hard not to like the smallest restaurant I saw recently in downtown Aken in Germany. It leaves room for one man, standing, and that’s it, period. At the door, metaphorically speaking, the man who welcomes you, is the owner, as well as the waiter, the cook and the cashier. As a guest you remain outside, which is slightly covered from sun or rain under the umbrella of Hakki.
Hakki has been the proud owner of the “Rostbrattwurst Restaurant” for 11 years already. This 50 kilo weighing construction contains a big umbrella, a heater, a windshield, a compartment for storing, a counter, two extra bags hanging on the side, a grill and a single pole on which it all stands. In the center of it all Hakki is king of his business and he plays his roll with dignity and pride. The menu is simple, ROSTBRATTWURST or grilled sausage Is the choice for everyone who steps forward. Variation only to be found in the topping either with ZENF or ketchup. The traditional German ZENF or mustard is the sharp kind of mustard that makes you cry when you eat it. Or you go for the sweet variation in USA style with ketchup. The ZENF (mustard) is of course the choice for real man, who can count on a positive nod from Hakki.
Hakki took the name from his grandfather because it was much easier to pronounce for the German speaking population. By that name various people greet him as he conducts his business. To me he seems like a social figure who has a friendly word for everyone. I picture him as the positive shadow, the mayor of the city, who serves his customers with a smile, some exchange and small talk alongside with their Bratwurst. For 2 euro and 20 cents both parties seem to be happy and well fed. And lets be honest, that is SMALL money.
Hakki can be found on the Adalbertstraße in Aken or Aachen in front of number 44, six days a week.
Bon appetite, the Dutch Cook