The Best Coffee Shops in Berlin
Berlin has absolutely hundreds of coffee shops and on the whole most of them are very impressive. It’s hard to walk more than a few minutes without coming across somewhere to get a quick cup of that dark, oily nectar we all crave so much, whether it be a quirky independent institute or simply a Balzac or Starbucks. I actually don’t mind Balzac coffee too much and Starbucks, well at some points in the day any coffee will do.
This article outlines some of our personal favourite places to grab a good coffee in Berlin. We’ll be adding more as we discover them. Most of these places are active in the specialist coffee scene often referred to as 3rd Wave Coffee. Third Wave essentially stands for exceptional quality and improvements in all levels of production from foraging and farming of the beans by environmentally sustainable farmers, to the roasting in smaller independent roastaries right down to the skills of the highly trained barista, culminating in a perfect coffee.
No Fire, No Glory
Rykestr. 45, 10405 Berlin
No Fire, No Glory is situated in the northern district of Prenzlauer Berg on a quiet picturesque, distinctively European street. “Coffee is our passion and we’re not alone.” No Fire, No Glory offer two regular espresso blends roasted by both Berlin locals, Bonanza Coffee and Denmark roasters, The Coffee Collective and also offer freshly brewed filter coffee from a diverse range of microroasters. Everything is fresh, the espresso is never made with beans more than 15 days past their roast date, organic milk is delivered daily and never used twice.
A wide range of fresh snacks both sweet and savoury are always on offer with a peaceful outdoor seating area and a plenty of comfortable space indoors. The bar features a beautiful huge wooden surface, home to in my opinion, the best looking espresso machine on the market, the Kees Van der Westen “Spirit.” Oh, and of course their iconic retro till register.
Bonanza Coffee Heroes
Oderberger Straße 35, 10435 Berlin
The guys behind Bonanza Coffee Heroes were one of the first Third Wave Coffee shops on the scene in Berlin. With a passion for quality and creativity, Kiduk Reus and Yumi Choi set out on a venture to serve coffee like no one had seen before. Initially the shop attracted a variety of artists and curious types, new to this style of coffee but has now grown to one of the most popular destinations for good coffee in the city. With a dedicated roastery now based in Wedding, the coffee is guaranteed to be fresh, with brewed coffee available alongside espresso based servings. A small indoor seating area is complimented with ample outdoor room, conveniently located just a stones throw away from the beautiful Mauerpark.
Bonanza Coffee Heroes is open till 7pm everyday bonanzacoffee.de
Schönhauser Allee 8, 10119 Berlin (Roastery) Auguststrasse 58 (Corner Koppenplatz), 10119 Berlin (Coffee Shop)
A Shlur favourite, we featured The Barn in our Craft Coffee Boom article back in September of last year. The Barn Roastery on Schönhauser Allee opened in September 2012 and compliments their smaller cafe, The Barn on Auguststraße. Working with sustainability and traceability in mind they buy from micro-farms (similar to micro-breweries) where they can deal as directly with the grower as possible, avoiding the merchants in between in the often lengthy trail and mess of purchasing coffee from larger growers. It’s like taking fair-trade to the next level. They roast all their beans on site to bring out their full flavour profile using an overhauled 1955 Probat Roast Machine. The Roastery is a simple place, simple menu with amazing coffee, simple but elegant decor, a no laptop rule and it’s not rare to see strangers sharing tables and conversations during busier periods. Distractions are kept to a minimum for you to enjoy the one thing you are there for most, the coffee.
Opening times vary throughout the year for both the Roastery and the Coffee Shop, more info on their site barn.bigcartel.com/find-us
Rosenthaler Straße 72a, 10119 Berlin
St. Oberholz is a bit of an odd one out on this list. Whereas most of the other places concentrate on living up to the Third Wave Coffee way of life, St Oberholz stands out in other ways. Featured on our Magnetic Mainstream article we described it as “the capital’s number one hipster wi-fi haven.” And that’s exactly what it is. The café-bar-bistro hybrid sits on two floors, its spacious upper-deck making good use of the building’s high ceilings (an architectural trademark of the city’s eastern precincts) to give the place a sense of understated grandeur. A busy but never chaotic bar whirrs beneath – its fringe lined with Perspex display counters stocking row upon row of freshly-filled bagels, salads, slaws and warm pastries. The combined floors are more or less big enough to preserve some sort of anonymity (and guarantee a spare seat), and yet, with its cosy alcoves and abundant cushions, it just about manages to feel homely. Coffee by day, beer by night, reasonable prices all round: the place is thoroughly inhabitable, seemingly for long periods of time (i.e. an entire working day). Looking around at the concentration on every Mac user’s face, you would forgive someone for momentarily thinking they had walked in on the office of a relaxed but nonetheless impressively disciplined ad agency. They also have a brilliant “Lost and Found” section on their website which is exactly what you think it is. It’s not updated that often anymore, maybe people are becoming more aware of their belongings, but the archives are worth a read.
St. Oberholz is openvEARLY to LATE sanktoberholz.de
Add your recommendations in the comments below, if we like them, we’ll add them!