Since my recent temporary relocation to Frankfurt for a consultancy assignment, I’ve dived into the local culinary scene from Monday to Thursday every evening to explore what’s on offer. Last Monday I was walking towards my hotel from the client’s office when I stumbled across this true gem.
Ranking #78 out of 2,000 Frankfurt restaurants (#17 out of 90 fine dining restaurants) on Tripadvisor, Classico doesn’t look particularly upmarket from the outside, with its standard off-the-shelf outdoor seating furniture and – when I arrived – none of the tables covered with tablecloth yet (because the guests were still screening the menus or ordering). It is located centrally, half-way between the Old Opera House (Alte Oper) and the Exhibition Centre (Messe).
As soon as the menu arrived, I realised that this was not going to be your average restaurant experience, more like fine dining, certainly judging by the prices. Chef Dimitris Stavros’ dishes are based on Mediterranean cooking traditions, including French, Italian and Greek influences.
After short deliberation I went for crayfish salmon tartare on a potato vegetable fritter with lime foam, avocado and beetroot as a starter, and monkfish medallions on Dijon velouté (basically a fish velouté with added Dijon mustard) with vegetables.
The tartare’s looks already had me bought in when it arrived. Just so beautiful to look at with the little red beetroot dots spread around it. But can’t have your cake and eat it, so I started tucking in, and boy was it tasty. The crayfish meat was evenly mixed into the salmon tartare and the two went extremely well together. I liked that they didn’t use too much dill, or too strong a variety of dill, so you could still enjoy the full taste of all the other ingredients.
The main was no less impressive and enormous in size. Three very large beautifully prepared monkfish fillets with some of the best texture I’ve experienced with this fish, that easily gets a bit rubbery, if the chef’s not careful. The veloute went very nicely with it and the spinach, carrots, zucchini, and potatoes were unusually full in flavour. I particularly liked the kohlrabi, a vegetable that I hadn’t had in a long time and that is in my view hugely underrated.
At roughly €42 with a large beer this was not the cheapest eat I had had, but worth every penny. I’ll take Ms B, my wife, here, when she visits. 5 out of 5.
Did we whet your appetite for further restaurant reviews? Click here for Restaurant Gruvelageret, Spitsbergen, here for two-starred restaurant Lafleur in Frankfurt, or here for the Fig in Chipping Campden.