Here’s to spring! All the petals and blossoms really pitched the mood in the city, everybody is slowly getting rid of winter feels and into their sunny madness. What could be a better time to look at the renewal happening in the foodie scene? Admittedly, my willingness to keep up with the speed of current openings (and closings, for that matter) is very, very limited. So many people are opening so many restaurants right now – I’m often just overwhelmed by the sheer number of places calling for attention. Fret not, I invested the time to wade through the streams of opening announcements and filtered out the ones I deem most interesting, just by affiliation, description and / or plain, old foodie gossip. Let’s see which ones will make it onto our regular radar, shall we?
A couple years ago, most of Berlin’s bubble tea places were brought down by a media campaign based on a feeble study alleging that the bubbles might be causing cancer. Despite plenty disproofs of this claim (which was, to be frank, also motivated by racist stereotypes), the bubble tea business was irrevocably harmed and only a few places still offered the tapioca pearl drinks. However, people might be over it and we might be able to re-enter a phase where there’s more choice to quench your thirst than naturtrübe Apfelschorle. An’s Tea House looks very much like an artisanal bubble tea place, and after 10 bubble filled days in Shanghai in March, I am delighted to see not only yakult green tea, but taro milk tea and several jelly teas! Can’t wait to go and try.
Torstraße 41, 10119 Berlin Mitte, Mon–Fri 12:00–20:00, Sat 12:00–21:00, Sun 13:00–19:00
Martin Gropius Bau is an Italian-renaissance-style exhibition building nestled in a street with a ton of history (next to it was the head quarter of SS and Gestapo, there’s still a stretch of the original wall, and opposite stands today’s ministry of finance in one of the only 3rd Reich buildings left, in which also, curve ball, the GDR was founded in 1949). For many years the Martin Gropius Bau’s museum gastronomy was not worth mentioning. Until now, when a remodelling of the whole building also opened up its café for a new owner. Open since March, it’s a collaboration of local baking queen Cynthia Barcomi and Shani Leiderman (fun fact, the two met at one of the meetings of my beloved side hustle, the feminist food club!) Let’s see how they fill the space with new life!
Niederkirchnerstraße 7, 10963 Berlin Kreuzberg, Wed–Mon 10:00–19:00
Another museum gastronomy that’s been in a bit of a hibernation is this Dan Graham designed pavilion in the yard of KunstWerke, an exhibition hall for ultra-contemporary art. It’s just now re-opening under the guidance of Bon Bock, a culinary residency program that’s venturing into café-ing with baked goods by Tausendsuend and Albatross, as well as soups and sandwiches. I always thought it was a pity that this stunning architecture felt quite neglected in the past years so it’ll be a very good reason to return to the artsy Hof in the center of Mitte.
Auguststraße 69, 10117 Berlin Mitte, Wed-Mon 10.30–18:00, Thu 11:00–00:00 (depending on events)
This is the first vegan AND zero waste restaurant in the city, which wouldn’t be any guarantee of success if the food wasn’t anything to write home about – however, I’ve already heard quite good things about it even though this place literally just opened. Born out of a crowdfunding campaign, they’re focussing on weekday lunch and weekend dinners with a Norwegian head chef serving their own sourdough bread, salads, freshly made pasta, and much more.
Torstraße 180, 10115 Berlin Mitte, Mon–Thu 12:00–16:00, Fri & Sat 12:00–16:00, 18:00–22:00
A new ice cream place! I love that the ice cream season is starting again, so yay! It’s in Steglitz, it’s all organic, and it’s named after a cat! What more can you ask for?
Schoeneberger Strasse 11, 12163 Berlin Steglitz, daily 12:00–20:00
It’s been a delight to watch the growing appreciation of Thai food in Berlin, Dalad Kambhu just received her very first Michelin star for her work at Kin Dee, and here’s a new place worth checking out for delicious and spicy Thai dishes. It’s a similar concept with a menu to choose from and dishes to share and I can’t wait to try it (despite it being in Friedrichshain, sorry not sorry).
Gryphiusstr. 10, 10245 Berlin Friedrichshain, Tue–Thu 18:00–23:00, Fri–Sat 18:00–24:00
Malakeh Jazmati has finally opened a restaurant: she had to flee Syria and came to Berlin via Jordan, where she used to have a TV cooking show. Once in Berlin she started out with a catering service, published a cookbook and now has her own place where she serves her Syrian dishes. I’ve already heard many people raving about the deliciousness of the food there and want to go there as soon as possible.
Potsdamer Straße 153, 10783 Berlin Schöneberg, Tue–Fri 15:00–23:00, Sat–Sun 12:00–23:00
Okay, spoiler: I already ate here. BECAUSE how could I not. I’ve been to all of their Das Brunch events and have known about them wanting to open a place and closely followed their renovations on this brick and mortar shop. It’s a lunch and brunch café off Potsdamer Straße, where they work their signature Persian inspired cooking into a full formed menu. The pancakes are delicious.
Lützowstraße 22, 10785 Berlin Schöneberg, Tue–Fri 08:00–17:00, Sat–Sun 10:00–16:00
Aand, I also already ate here – but just for a super quick, basically snack-like dinner before a concert and well, I gotta go back to have the full experience. It’s Levantine food made on a very, very high level with some menu items that are still quite rare in Berlin like makdous, oil-cured aubergines filled with walnuts. Definitely bring more than one friend to be able to order all of it, and definitely don’t just walk in, this place is already packed and a table reservation is very, very recommendable.
Husemannstrasse 1, 10435 Berlin, Tue–Thu 17:00–22:30, Fri–Sat 17:00–23:30, Sun 14:30–22:00
The pizza hype ain’t over! Because why should it be. For me, we all could do with a little less “best, bester, bestest” clamoring around the round treat and instead just enjoy the fact we’re getting additional pizza-enthusiasts, since the more is usually the merrier (and all that hierarchization can be quite annoying). Just make good pizza, folks! I don’t care whether it’s “the best baked dough outside of Napoli”. End of rant, here are your new pizzaiolos: from the team of Parker Bowles comes Dookie with its new home at Prinzenstr. 85d, opening this Friday. Then there’s Futura, where a former Standard baker serves pizza in a street off the gritty Frankfurter Tor in eastern Friedrichshain, Bänschstraße 91. And last in alphabetical order is the new pizza place of Italian super bakers Sironi of Markthalle Neun fame, opening soonish in Schöneberg. Let’s go eat!