Berlin is a historical city, that goes without saying. Tucked away down cobblestone streets, in the far reaches of Wilmersdorf – and actually quite close to my own home – are some kneipe’s that leave any bustling modern joint in the shade. Come with me as we visit the best boozers in Berlin:
Zur Letzten Instanz in Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg stole a little piece of my heart, with it’s beautiful draught taps, tiled stove seat (hundreds of years old, bears the faint impression of Napoleon’s arse) beer garden and beautiful antiques dotted around. It boasts the claim of Berlin’s oldest bar, dating back to the 1600s. I can’t wait to come back and have dinner here (while I was inside shooting, the waitress turned away more than one group that spontaneously showed up – and that was a Tuesday. Reservations advised.)
My other favourite was Wilhelm Hoeck – a kneipe in Wilmdersdorf dating back to the late 1800’s, chock full of locals having their usual at 2pm in the afternoon. If walls could talk, you wouldn’t get a word in. They also have a cosy looking restaurant adjoining the bar which I look forward to coming back to for a visit.
Clärchens Ballhaus in Mitte – an institution in Berlin, of course. More of a ballroom than a boozer, but plenty of boozing has been done in these halls.
Bar Lebensstern above Cafe Einstein in Schöneberg – everywhere you turn, there’s booze, and Henny Porten’s solemn visage reminding you of the tragic history behind the building.
Prater is well known as the go-to beer garten in Prenzlauer Berg: it dates back to 1837 and if you step inside the Gaststätte, you can check out some of the old original white ceramic beer bottles bearing the name “Kalbo” from the original owner who brewed his beers on site in the late 1800’s:
I delved into these historical Berlin bars which survived WWII and lived to tell the tale, for Tales of the Cocktail – you can read the full piece here.