Nächster Halt Warschauer Straße. Fine Bagels is a Jewish-American café. This café’s motto is Lign in d’rerd un bakn beygl! (lie on the floor and bake). Whilst my baking skills are not so refined, I would lie on the floor and sleep there if I could…It’s the perfect spot for booklovers since its connected to Shakespeare and Sons bookstore (Lord of the Flies meets Lord of the Coffee Beans!). My favourite pastime is going to a café with a paperback, and Fine Bagels enhanced this experience with its delicious cinnamon babkas and iced coffees, so it became my primary reading nook in Berlin.
Nächster Halt Hackescher Markt. House of Small Wonder is a café that has been inspired by Japanese cuisine and I’m a big fan of it, especially its brunch all day – wonderful stuff. It’s an enchanting café that provides nature admirers with serotonin en masse. I don’t have plants in my uni dorm, but I still appreciated the plants, trees and wisteria that made this place so whimsical.
Nächster Halt Julius-Leber-Brücke. Unser Café is a Portuguese bakery, in other words pastel de nata heaven. Pastéis de nata are Portuguese egg custard tarts, usually dusted with cinnamon, but this café in Berlin offers a variety of flavours: blueberry, banana, chocolate etc. It was the perfect place to stop for a coffee break after a pleasant stroll through Viktoriapark (which has some of the best views of Berlin).
...just a few euros for a coffee, and it transformed into a home away from home...
Ultimately, Berlin’s speciality coffee scene was an embrace of all my senses. It was the smell of espresso and baked goods as soon as I entered. It was the sound of the French press while I was waiting for my caffeinated concoction. It was the flicking through of the pages of the books on display whilst I was waiting. It was the sound of the lo-fi Spotify playlists whilst I was stirring my iced coffee. It was the light-hearted chatter and smiles from a friend who I had not met up with in months. It was an intimate and personal space of reflection for me – a space that I wasn’t paying rent for; just a few euros for a coffee, and it transformed into a home away from home.