I like it when things go well. And they’re going very well for one of my favorite coffee businesses in Berlin: Companion Coffee. Apart from being busy with their coffee branch in Voo Store, they’ve now enhanced their business towards tea, offering a carefully selected small range for you to enjoy there or to take home. This is a Lakyrsiew black tea from India, harvested in July 2012 from a family-run, artisanal garden.
First off, don’t trust your iPhone to just lead you straight to Lon Men, as it has a Googlegänger some 20 minutes further south, a Chinese restaurant that smelled great but definitely was not the place I was supposed to meet the Wednesday Chef for lunch. By the time I’d rushed my way back up to Kantstrasse (and how could I possible have thought this lovely little Taiwanese treasure would be anywhere else but amidst Berlin’s street of Asian delights; see Aroma and Dao), she had already made headway into a disappointing noodle soup and some surprising off-menu dumplings in chili sauce.
Do you remember the summer of 2012? It was the summer of “Call Me Maybe” and McDonalds started to sell bubble tea at their McCafés in Germany and Austria. That summer, bubble tea was everywhere in the city, every skinny storefront, every empty U-Bahn shop, every former sausage stand started to sell sugary muck filled with gooey little balls.
We heart the Street Food Thursdays at Markthalle IX, we really do, but its success has resulted in long lines and sometimes an actual shortage of food, yikes! Suffice to say Berlin was in the market for a second Brooklyn-style street food fair, and in Bite Club it has found a worthy (if immediately also immensely popular) one.
Everybody has their own perfect comfort food. There’s comfort foods that are best served solo—like congee, macaroni and cheese, grated apple—and then there’s comfort food that’s meant to be shared: popcorn, fried chicken, fresh mango, soup dumplings, or cheese fondue. None of these are as much fun, or as delicious, when consumed alone on your couch. Hot pot is clearly a dining experience of the latter, shared variety.