Hi guys, Nick here. While I’ve been behind the scenes on many a LedByLucy shoot and watched many great drafts develop from the sidelines this is my first actual solo post (intimidating!). Doing a post on here has always been something Lucy and I would talk about but the right idea never came along until now. Coffee is a huge passion of mine and while I don’t get into it in a geeky way (trust me, I have plenty of other geek moments over other things) I always seek out the best coffee places in new cities we visit and enjoy experiencing quality cups from people who know their craft.
The Berlin Coffee Festival arrived on our doorstep recently and so it seemed like a perfect time for me to jump in and write a post about the coffee shops I love in Berlin. All these places were all reppin’ at the festival and the experience was one which further stoked my passion to seek out great coffee. So, with no further ado, here are my Top 5 Favourite Coffee Shops in Berlin.
Silo is my regular place. I go there almost every weekend and get their amazing flat white or cortado. They use coffee from Fjord Coffee Roasters and the quality is just unbeatable. I have never had a bad cup in 13 months and I see this as nothing short of small miracle. It’s also a known favorite of super-star DJ Richie Hawtin when he’s in town playing Berghain (which is just around the corner) and they do a super awesome breakfast too.
2. Five Elephant
Five Elephant is often listed in the top coffee places in Berlin and frequently the best coffee place in Kreuzberg. The cafe is welcoming and the staff really know their stuff – they also speak German and English willingly. They change their blends pretty frequently and always like to talk you through their new products and make recommendations. Tip: The cheesecake here is legendary. Seriously. It’s utterly unreal.
3. Double Eye
This place is an institution. They recently celebrated their 15th Birthday and it’s easy to see why they have been a success for so long. This place is unlike many of the frequnetly touted third wave coffee shops in Berlin with their raw cut, treated wood furnishings and totems to hipster-dom (mounted fixie bike on the wall, anyone?). Double Eye resides in the somewhat sleepy, residential area of Schöneberg yet commands a loyal following from all around Berlin. Tip: Grab their ‘Super Spezial’ – a cortado style small cup with a double shot of coffee sandwiched by normal latte-style foam on the top and super-sweet Vietnamese-style condensed milk underneath.
4. Happy Baristas
Happy Baristas is another regular spot for me and sits just beyond Ostkreuz station. The place (which you can see in the first two pictures in this post) is really tastefully-decorated, the food is also pretty awesome. They took part in the Coffee Festival and hosted cuppings (which are kind of like ceremonial tasting sessions), and a special coffee cocktail menu. They also have really friendly staff. Highly recommended.
5. Father Carpenter’s Coffee Brewers
In a somewhat poetic circularity, this place is very tied to my number 1 choice, Silo. They both use Fjord Coffee Roasters for their brews and have a similar sensibility in great breakfasts and infallible quality. This place is located in Mitte, not too far from Alexanderplatz station and sits within a really beautiful courtyard which they share with another favourite brand of mine, Nudie Jeans. They have a main restaurant and a take away shop if you’re in a rush (warning: it gets busy on a weekend so get there early if you want breakfast).
Edit: Ok, so I had to come back to this post and add one in here. I found this place just as I was finalising the post and it quickly became a favourite weekend spot for me. I was struck by the friendly service and range of beans at Tres Cabezas (http://www.trescabezas.de/) on my first visit. Their regular roasting and variety of coffee has made this place a real point of interest for those who love fresh brews and high quality. In my view it’s not just one thing that makes this place great, it’s the whole package – be sure to try out the freshly baked Portuguese tarts too as they are life-changing. Me and Lucy first found out about Tres Cabezas from their suppliers at the Berlin Coffee Festival who took us through a cupping of all their brews. They gave us a really insightful and passionate account of what they strive to achieve with their beans and what makes a great cup of coffee and this quality is so apparent when you take your first sip. The owners also opened a place in Mitte called 19grams which serves all their great coffees as well as some delicious-looking breakfasts I can’t wait to try.
As you can see, me and Lucy really enjoyed the festival (it was held at Markthalle Neun – our local food market hall). We got to learn a lot about roasts, what makes a good blend and the way in which roasters and traders judge quality and supply great coffee to our favourite shops. While Lucy didn’t drink any coffee (she did enjoy a good sniff, though) she was similarly enticed by all the aromas and expertise that goes into the perfect cup.
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