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Restaurant scene: Cafe Especial opens in Bonn city center

Restaurant scene : Cafe Especial opens in Bonn city center

A Mexican flair can now be found in the former Bottler's Restaurant at the Sterntor in Bonn city center. Typical Mexican dishes and a selection of over 70 tequila varieties await guests in the Cafe Especial.

Amsterdam native Bob Van Leeuwen travelled to Mexico for the first time in 1976 and was immediately captivated by the magic of the Central American country. Ten years later he established the Cafe Especial opposite the Cologne-Deutz train station, followed by another branch in Saarbrücken in 1997. Van Leeuwen and his business partner Robin Beckers have now opened their third Cafe Especial right in the heart of Bonn's city center, in the former Bottler's at the historic Sterntor.

After almost four months of reconstruction and renovation, the chandeliers and the wall arches still bear witness to the gastronomic predecessor, while ceiling fans, brightly colored murals with Mexican motifs and an inviting bar create a typical Central American atmosphere. Restaurant manager Marina Völkl and her team can accommodate 120 guests inside and 80 more outdoors (in front of the building and at the Sterntor fountain).

Bob Van Leeuwen describes the restaurant's philosophy: "The country has so many facets - adventure, exoticism, food and drink culture - and that's what we want to embody here." His partner Robin Beckers adds: "It's all about the overall gastronomic package - our guests should have a really good experience here."

The menu includes starters such as taquitos (rolled fried corn tortillas stuffed with beef, guacamole and sour cream) for 8.50 euros and guacamole dip made from avocados, tomatoes and onions, plus a bowl of corn tortilla chips (9.50 euros) as well as main courses such as Enchiladas con pescado (rolled wheat tortillas stuffed with Fjord salmon fillet and white wine fresh cheese sauce) for 16.50 euros or Chimichanga (large deep-fried wheat tortilla stuffed with cheese and either chicken, beef or beef minced meat and enchiladas sauce with guacamole and sour cream) for 17 euros. For dessert, one of the offers is homemade chocolate pudding with mango sauce (four euros). There is also a separate finger food menu (prices between 3.60 and 4.50 euros) and a children's menu (all dishes 4.50 euros each).

Früh Kölsch (0,2l for 1,90 Euro), Krombacher Pils (0,25l for 2,80 Euro) and Krombacher Weizenbiere (0,5l for 4,70 Euro) are on tap. The selection of more than 70 tequila varieties deserves special attention, as do around ten different bottled beers from Mexico, e.g. Pacifico Clara, Dos Equis or Bohemia 1905 (0.33l each and from 3.90 euros). A metal bucket with seven Mexican bottled beers costs 23.40 euros (based on the Corona and Sol varieties; seven bottles of other varieties in the bucket cost 27 euros). The Pitcher Hour for cocktail events takes place twice a day (5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.).

Cafe Especial, Vivatsgasse 8, 53111 Bonn city center (Sterntor), www.cafe-especial.com, Tel. (0228) 41 02 99 10

Open every day from 11 a.m. (kitchen open until 11 p.m.).

(Orig. text: general-anzeiger-bonn.de; Translation: ck)