At the counter of Café Isabella in the old town there are colorful tarts and macarons, alongside sandwiches with grilled vegetables or goat cheese and fig mustard. Smoothies and granola are on the menu. What’s special: Everything is gluten-free, many are also lactose-free, dairy-free, vegan or without sugar. Many guests find something for themselves on the menu here, even if they have a food intolerance.
In the guest room, in a style somewhere between romantic and vintage chic, there is an old chest of drawers with books and a lamp on it. A Christmas tree glitters next to it. Colorful cushions lie on sofas and benches; They match the color of the tableware with the playful patterns. The room is large and seems a bit impersonal, but the café is still cozy.
Isabella was founded by Isabella Krätz. “It all started with a diagnosis around ten years ago: celiac disease,” says the café’s website. Chronic inflammation of the intestines is caused by gluten. Krätz quickly realized what she was missing most from her now gluten-free diet: bread. So she started baking her own gluten-free bread. A little later she opened a café in Düsseldorf where she also offered gluten-free tarts and desserts. Isabella is now available in seven cities and all products are made in a bakery in Duisburg. The Munich store opened in 2022.
What is there and how much does it cost?
In Café Isabella you can have breakfast until twelve o’clock on weekdays and until 2 p.m. on weekends. For example, Isabella’s Avocado Star is on offer: for 16.90 euros you get toasted organic protein bread with cream cheese, avocado and two poached eggs. The Vegan Cheesy Delight breakfast (15.90 euros) is served with vegan cheese, tomatoes, grapes, walnuts and fig mustard. The cashew cheese tastes fresh and has a lemony note. Gluten-free bread and a roll come in a basket. A vegan organic sandwich with grilled vegetables is available for 6.90 euros. It is spread with a homemade peanut chili cream, slightly spicy and sweet.
If you like it sweet, order the Dark Chocolate Granola (9.90 euros). In addition to chocolate, there are almonds and amaranth pops; The crunchy muesli is served with grapes and various berries. At the counter you can get sweet pastries such as a vegan pistachio and raspberry tart and gluten-free breads to take away.
A cappuccino costs 4.20 euros in the café, and herbal tea costs 3.90 euros. Smoothies like the New Vanilla for 8.90 euros with, among other things, banana, kale, cashew, coconut milk or cocoa powder are significantly more expensive.
Who do you meet there?
In the morning, young women sit at the tables for two and on the sofas having brunch. But older guests, tourists or visitors who have brought their laptop with them to work also like to go to the café. The large dining room and the toilets can only be reached via steps, but the sales counters and tables in the lower part of the café are barrier-free.
An Isabella employee estimates that around half of the guests have a food intolerance, for example gluten or lactose. Others come because they want to eat healthy and vegan. After all, that’s what Isabella is: a lifestyle café. But for everyone.
Isabella CoffeeHackenstraße 4, 80331 Munich, opening hours: Monday to Saturday 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.