I've also seen restaurants become complacent. Successful restaurants often become indifferent and take their customer base for granted. Such is the case with David's, a successful restaurant in Portland, Maine. It expanded and began to rely on the tourist trade. The result was lackluster food and poor service.
Luckily, I've found a few places in Berlin that consistently have great food. I've been visiting Frau Behrens Torten for about 10 years. It's a small bakery located in Wilmersdorf and it has great cakes! Started by Victoria Fernandez, a Spanish transplant to Berlin, Ms. Fernandez uses recipes handed down from her German mother-in-law. Fernandez uses fresh ingredients, no preservatives, and no chemical additives. In all the years I've been going to Frau Behrens, I've never been disappointed. The walnut cake is amazing!
Ristorante Boccalli near Winterfeldtstraße is another restaurant that continues to be one of my favorite places. Their lunch special includes a huge pizza or pasta dish, a glass of wine or soft drink, salad, and coffee for only €7.90. Their friendly service and professional attitude makes Boccalli one of Berlin's best Italian restaurants. You won't be disappointed.