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.
Author: Florian Duijsens
These surely aren’t the easiest of times for bookstores, though it didn’t look like it when I stopped by to take some pictures on a Monday morning at 11am. Visiting Mediterraneans were shopping for Hornby and Coupland, an academic on her way back home to the States was parting with her gorgeous Ottolenghi cookbook, and I, unable to help myself, bought a respectable stack of Lispector, Nothomb, and Lydia Davis. As the phone rang off its hook, orders were taken, and customers directed to relevant shelves, one girl just curled up on the old couch, deep inside a book the cover of which she was keeping to herself.
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.
Some say the best Berlin experiences take place at dawn: making it past the doormen at Berghain, successfully avoiding the Club Mate bottles on your way home through a park, even being awakened by the garbage trucks and knowing you can sleep another hour or two. Everything looks better just before the break of day. Everything, that is, except for absolutely EVERYTHING when we have a sunset like the one we did last night. Berlin was all a-gloaming in pastels, and it was glorious.
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.