Fuck, it’s gotten cold and while the cinemas are well heated, where would you go in between screenings of the BERLIN ART FILM FESTIVAL? We almost gave up on finding the right location near the Fsk until we stumbled across one of the cosiest and sweetest places the very last minute. The official festival canteen of the BERLIN ART FILM FESTIVAL will be only a stone’s throw away (shouldn’t use that expression in Kreuzberg though) from the cinema and holds warm soup, excellent coffee, homemade Flammkuchen and free WiFi for you in store. With a cinema ticket at hand you even get a small discount on the altogther very reasonably priced delicacies – so here’s the story of a wonderful place called Dresden…
30-year old entrepreneur Tim Lanwerd didn’t just call his cute café/bar Dresden because it’s located on one end of Dresdner Straße. No, Tim was actually born on Dresdener Straße. “Yeah right”, you ‘ll say, but that story is in fact true and when you see how homely and loving his place is you can actually believe that he was born in his parents apartment only one block away. Dresden is a family business, Kreuzberg-style, the best way imaginable. Manuel Fritz, Tim’s dad, is a well-known goldsmith whose long-standing shop is literally around the corner. From the windows of Oranienstraße you can see him and his colleagues work on handcrafted jewellery. Together with Tim’s mom, the three run the Dresden and had a lot of work to do before they finally opened in 2011. Originally a tea bar run by a group of Kurdish men, the Dresden needed some serious make-over to reveal the treasures that lay beneath laminate and generations of wallpaper. The few months estimated for renovation turned into a year and beautiful stucco and ancient tiles revealed themselves on the ceilings and floors. Tim added some rustic wood as a bar counter and filled the place with furniture and interior designs that don’t scream “fancy” but are carefully chosen and add up to the unpretentious and very comfy atmosphere of the Dresden.
Tim Lanwerd has a typical Berlin career behind him; working in bars and film productions and whatnot he later decided to enter fruit and vegetable wholesales until he finally came up with the idea of opening up his own place. From his work in the food industry he has learned that selecting the right ingredients is the be-all and and-all of a good caterer. The Berlin-style potato soup that will be waiting for us on Saturday for example is made with organic potatoes from local farmers, the cheese on the Flammkuchen is a Swiss import from a small farm and sometimes takes up to six weeks to be delivered. Everything in Tim’s kitchen (and bar) is carefully chosen – local, organic, fair trade and unique. His beer is not only organic, but also unique in Berlin, and that means something, doesn’t it? It’s called Ruppaner Bio-Schimmele and is imported from Konstanz, where dad Manuel Fritz was born. The Dresden usually opens at 6pm but is kind enough to take care of the BERLIN ART FILM FESTIVAL goers and will therefore be ready for you from Friday to Sunday, 1pm. There will be different soups every day like a delicious savory pumpkin soup (Friday), the classic Berlin potato soup (Saturday) and a substantial minestrone (Sunday).
But now I almost forgot the most unusual thing that the Dresden has to offer (and you might actually already know it from Street Food Thursday): exactly – wheatgrass juice. “Yuck!” is what I first thought as I saw it. “You must be kidding,” is was what Tim said to his mother when she introduced the idea of making extremely healthy and detoxing shots out of well – grass. Once you drink and even learn something about it you’ll change your mind. Offered as a shot, a Schorle (mixed with fizzy water, Germans love that expression) or even as a long drink, wheat grass can work wonders, energize you and seems almost like medicine, though it tastes better. “Wheatgrass juice is an effective healer because it contains chlorophyll, all minerals known to man, and vitamins A, B-complex, C, E, and K. Wheatgrass is extremely rich in protein, and contains 17 amino acids, the building blocks of protein”, says the Ann Wigmore Natrual Health Institute named after Ann Wigmore, a “holistic health practitioner, nutritionist, whole foods advocate, health educator” (says Wikipedia) who was born in Lithuania in 1909 and made wheatjuice popular. Tim Lanwerd gets his wheat (you know) from gardens in Pankow and has it cut and chilled waiting to be processed.
I suggest you try a shot against the inevitable winter flue, warm yourself with some homemade soup and coffee, maybe try the Schimmele at night and later one of the fantastic Absinths that are served with a special (quite beautiful) fountain with water and sugar. And as tempting as it seems – don’t forget to return to the cinema, the films will be waiting for you!
edited by: Jörg von Stein
Berlin Art Film Festival Canteen
Dresdener Str. 19
Telefon: 030 / 6151700
Find Dresden on Facebook: Here!
Opening hours during the Berlin Art Film Festival:
Thursday from 6pm on
Friday, Saturday, Sunday from 1 pm on