Hitler’s marshal’s favorite restaurant was founded in Berlin. In 1943, its owner moved to Madrid. Today, the granddaughter tells us about her 110 years
Horcher was Hermann Göring’s favorite restaurant. The sybaritic Nazi had his own wine reserve in the cellar of the Berlin establishment. Located at number 21 Martin-Luther-Strase, it had been founded by Gustav Horcher in 1904. 110 years ago. The other restaurant of reference was Borchardt, where the sinister Fritz von Holstein invented the ornate escalope that bears his name. Borchardt was downtown, and Horcher was on the posh west side of town.
From the beginning it specialized in game dishes, which came in handy in the days of rationing and scarcity after the First World War. President Hindenburg was also a regular customer. and Albert Speer. In general, the rich of Berlin and, in his time, the Nazi hierarchy. In 1943, Otto Horcher, Gustav’s son, moved the business to Madrid by train. The business, the glassware, the cutlery and an exquisite style of restoration that has survived to this day. Little has changed for nothing to change. Otto was the grandfather of Elisabeth Horcher (Madrid, 1981), the fourth generation of the family running a restaurant with the same success in Berlin as in Madrid.
I ask him if it is true that it was Göring who advised his grandfather to leave Berlin. «My grandfather’s restaurant was closed because luxury was not allowed, they were at war. A restaurant like this didn’t make any sense, apart from the fact that they were bombing Berlin. He asked for a permit to come to Spain. He was related to high positions at that time ».
And why Spain? “Because I had friends here.” In “Göring,” David Irving argues that Horcher’s staff were exempt from military service. And the restaurant, exempt from the Total War decree of Joseph Goebbels. But according to Frabrice D’Almeida in “The Sin of the Gods,” it was Goebbels who “gets the closure of the Berlin Horcher, whose excesses seem to him unjustifiable in the face of war propaganda.”
Reports from American spies in Madrid claimed that the restaurant was a front for the Nazi government, a nest of spies. It is true that their tables were frequented by guys like Josef Hans Lazar, head of press and propaganda at the German embassy, or by Otto Skorzeny, one of the main figures in Odessa in Spain (a network that helped the Nazis escape to South America).
Franco was not a client
According to Elisabeth Horcher, there is a lot of truth and a lot of myth. “My grandparents were not sympathetic at all to this man’s regime. But they had to go on living. It is true that he saw everything around here. Then, people love the curiosity that it was a Nazi restaurant. It was a restaurant of the time. And the people who were in Madrid at that time came, Germans and English». Franco was not a client. Nor Leire Pajín (a few years ago it was said that she had been rebuked in the establishment). Yes it is the King. “I can’t tell you when he was last, let’s see if he’s not going to come back.” Sophia Loren and Chaplin also visited him. A restaurant outside the Michelin Guide. With cushioned feet for the ladies, with a natural requirement for a jacket and tie for the gentlemen.
—Has Ferran Adrià come?
-Yes. And I think she liked it.
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Horcher, from Hermann Göring to Ferran Adrià
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