Šljiva [pronounced "Shleeva"], a promising new addition to the Arminius Markthalle in Moabit, has what many (Berlin) restaurants still miss: the power of women fuelling it. Owner and Chef, Cathleen Potter left behind the security of her job in project management to devote herself to her passion project, a Balkan bistro which brings together the best of the region’s culinary culture on one menu. There’s “Karadjordjeva Schnitzel” filled with bacon & kajmak, homemade Serbian pasta (“Miinci”) and “Krempita” for dessert: a refreshing blend of baklava-like puff pastry and vanilla cream. When contemplating Balkan cuisine, mountains of meat may come to mind. That’s not the case at Šljiva, where Potter wants to do things differently: More enjoyment, less belly. Of course, the legendary “Ćevapčići” (grilled minced meat) is a menu mainstay, but here it comes served with vegetables, grilled octopus and my personal highlight: the specially-created Šljiva salad with celery, apple, walnuts, dried plums, mayonnaise and the delicious Duvan Čvarci (pork scratchings). To top it all off, the plum brandy “Šljivovica” — the namesake of this culinary journey through the Balkans — was offered as a digestif on the house. (Text: Marielle Kreienborg / Photos: Pamina Aichhorn)

Restaurant Šljiva, Arminiusmarkthalle, Arminiusstr.2-4 10551 Berlin-Moabit; map

Mon 18-22h, Tue-Fri 12-15h & 18-22h, Sat 12-23h

Having studied languages at Humboldt University, Marielle Kreienborg has been living in Neukölln for six years and working as a freelance writer reporting on Berlin and beyond.