Drinking In... Berlin
More than 20 years after the fall of the Berlin wall, Germany's capital has turned into one of the most vibrant cities in Europe, known especially for its unparalleled nightlife. Every week new bars and clubs pop up, one more colorful than the other. But everything that glitters is not gold — here is a local guide through the bar jungle of Berlin.
During the day you'll find a laid back crowd relaxing on the wooden benches in front of the bar, enjoying the sun and watching fellow hipsters passing by on Kreuzbergs boulevard's Oranienstrasse. Until 6 pm no hard liquor is served, only wine and beer. Luzia is one of the few places in Berlin where you get the famous Bavarian wheat beer Augustiner. Later at night, the action moves from outside to inside and the mood changes to sophisticated sexiness. Electronic beats and indie rock float through the wide industrial space, which features exposed brick, gilded mirrors, golden walls, velvet armchairs and '70s chandeliers.
Luzia, Oranienstr. 34, 10999 Berlin
Only insiders know what hides behind the unimposing walls of this 19th century building on the corner of Torstrasse and Friedrichstrasse. Thick black curtains and a massive door make a quick glimpse impossible; Bravo Bar has a mix of gloomy glamour, pop and champagne. The walls of the two narrow rooms are painted black, the plaster on the high ceilings has seen better days and there are no chairs or tables, only two bars. The choice of drinks is similarly minimalist but a tasty selection of alcohol is served, consisting of gin, rum, vodka and champagne. An upbeat soundtrack breaks the dark vibe and attracts a sophisticated crowd.
Bravo Bar, Torstraße 230, 10115 Berlin
Some might wonder why in the past few weeks people have had an urge for Currywurst at night. Stylish men in their early 30s, wearing suspenders and Murkudis jackets accompanied by well dressed women, are seen entering the Currywurst joint at Torstraße, leaving many hours later. Hidden behind the façade of a butcher's shop is an exclusive and secret bar called Butcher's. Once you find the Currywurst joint and discover the hidden entrance, a tasteful mix of butcher supplies, tiles walls and warm red and bronze colors welcomes you. Not only is it one of Berlin’s first speakeasy bars, unlike their American predecessors in the 20s, the Butcher’s crew serves excellent and exquisite drinks with a special touch that matches the location like BBQ sauce.
Butcher's, Torstraße 116, 10119 Berlin
Sorsi e Morsi
The Sorsi e Morsi is definitely worth a visit. Located on a quiet side street of Prenzlauer Berg, its outstanding wine selection served with tasty Italian appetizers and its friendly atmosphere attract a charismatic, diverse crowd. The place is small and always packed. You sit in close quarters on the black leather furniture. Naturally neighbors start chatting and strangers turn into friends. Try out the white Grillo from Sicily.
Sorsi e Morsi, Marienburger Str. 10, 10405 Berlin
Neue Odessa Bar
Located in Berlin Mitte nestled between stylish galleries and fancy restaurants, the Neue Odessa Bar is the right place to go after an art opening to grab a drink and prepare for the wild Berlin party nights. The furniture is dark, the music loud and the drinks are strong. Here young actors meet upcoming designers and emerging curators. Every once in a while a star is seen between all the starlets. Highly recommended: the Moscow Mule … but be careful, it is strong!
Neue Odessa Bar, Torstraße 89, 10119 Berlin
Club der Visionäre
If Tom Sawyer would have opened a bar in Berlin it would have looked like Club der Visionäre. Floating wooden pontoons, wooden terraces built in and around trees give this place a fairy like touch. On warm summer nights a young crowd sits on the planks sipping on their Tannenzäpfle, a beer from southern Germany which has become very popular in recent years, dancing on the tiny dance floor to indie and electro music.
Club der Visionäre, Am Flutgraben 1, 12435 Berlin
After the legendary Bar 25 closed in 2010, its founders did not let down their fans and opened up a new hot spot on the other side of the river. An old soap factory is now the home to the hippest place in town. The façade is decorated with street art and the bar is out in the open. There is plenty of space to hang out by the river and great electronic music is guaranteed. An eccentric festival crowd rocks Kater Holzig nonstop from Thursday through Sunday. But that’s not all, the factory also has a somewhat shabby looking restaurant, with graffiti walls and tweedy wooden features but with an exquisite cuisine.
Kater Holzig, Michaelkirchstr. 23, 10179 Berlin