Being vegan in Berlin might be easier than in any other German city, yet I don’t necessarily find eating out very appealing most of the times. While there are plenty of options for vegan fast food (burgers, döners, pizzas…) and at least some for fine vegan dining, Berlin’s missing out on options for when you’re neither craving trashy nor dainty, but want a healthy lunch or a modest dinner. And then there’s the problem with the locations, Mitte is so short on vegan spots it’s almost ridiculous considering its bobo population. Naturally, the café I am recommending you now is far off Torstraße almost down at the southern tracks of Ringbahn, a short walk from Rathaus Neukölln station.
Pêle Mêle caught my eye in various recommendations, yet I waited on being in the area – which I was last week for a photo shoot for Vogue.de at Augustin Teboul’s studio. I passed the time at this pretty café furnished with a sustainable concept in mind on Innstraße close to Richardplatz. They offer breakfast, although only opening at 10am, and simple lunch options like soup, tartes, bagels and sandwiches. And then there’s a fairly big selection of sweets, brownies and cakes, mousse and croissants.
For my late breakfast, I chose the sandwich with smoked tofu and house-made pear chutney (3,50 Euro), which you can see in the photo above, it was certainly delicious, freshly made and the ingredients were nicely balanced. Blurred in the back is a green smoothie, which was sadly a bit disappointing with its big chunks of banana and an overly sour taste. But then, Berlin’s green smoothie business is still in its very early stages of development and only few places get it (almost) right.
Still, Pêle Mêle is very much an “if you’re in the area” recommendation, and if you care for brunch (I don’t), you should try their vegan brunch happening every first Sunday of the month.