Best of the Bay 2012: BEST GEMÜTLICHKEIT

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BEST GEMÜTLICHKEIT

Mention Speisekammer Restaurant to islanders who know, and you'll get an instant flash of that gemütlichkeit, or cheery coziness, the spot is renown for. They'll bend your earbone raving about the dishes served up under the ownership of former Cafe du Nord honcho Cindy Johnson-Kohl: the succulent sauerbraten served with a side of red cabbage and spätzle, the cabbage rolls, the potato pancakes with house-made apple compote — or for the unrepentant carnivores in the fam, the Gegrillte Fleischplatte, a family-style grilled meat platter spilling over with sausages. It's the lip-smacking stuff of liebling's dreams — and it's all begging to be washed down with a selection from the expansive drink list, and accompanied by live music from locals like the Frisky Frolics jazz cats, and Cali country outfit Kit and the Branded Men.

2424 Lincoln, Alameda. (510) 522-1300, www.speisekammer.com