Since Western-Germanic-post-communist cultures aren’t the only thing Berlin skillfully blends, we thought we’d take a look at the finest cocktail joints the city has to offer, then ruthlessly whittle that number down to only the best seven...
The Definitive Eggnog Recipe You Need for the Holidays
Studio8 Wedding Paving the way towards Wedding’s imminent future as The Next Big Thing, is one of the city’s best-kept secrets, Studio8. A sleekly minimal space lit by vertical strips of light along the walls, they keep things real simple with just a handful of cocktails daily scribbled in chalk onto a blackboard. What you're drinking: Whatever's on the chalkboard, or just one of their perfectly made Marys.
Drayton Bar Mitte You may have heard of Berlin’s much-loved club/vegetarian restaurant Cookies. Well, Drayton’s is the adjoining bar and an institution in its own right -- tucked away from the tourist traps of Friedrichstraße, Drayton’s is a dark industrially vibed drink den, w/ chunky wooden & metal fittings offset w/ splashes of gold. What you're drinking: Back by Midnight -- dark Indian rum/coffee liqueur/chocolate and cherry bitters.
Melody Nelson Mitte Although once a former East German bar for Stasi members, they've stopped tapping both phone calls, and beer, focussing completely on the cocktails. Reincarnated and named after Serge Gainsbourg’s ‘70s album (Histoire de Melody Nelson), it's got a sleek Brooklyn-ite feel of bare concrete and low-wattage bulbs. Essential Cocktail: Black Mojito -- it uses dark spiced rum, and apparently this is the only place in town to get one.
John Muir Kreuzberg Sandwiched between Gorlitzer Park and Schlesisches Tor, a couple of steps down leads you to this cozy basement drinkery, and with an ever-changing cocktail menu, no two trips to this exposed-brick establishment are ever the same. What you're drinking: Bloody Knuckle (rye whiskey, Aperol, sloe gin, orange bitters).
Newton Bar Mitte Helmut Newton’s iconically sexy-yet-just-the-right-side-of-artistic photographs line the walls, whilst guests sit on huge red leather lounge chairs in front of huge oak tables, sipping from a menu of extremely well-crafted cocktails. There's even a cigar room upstairs. Essential Cocktail: Metropolis Berlin. Yes, it has Jagermeister in it, but just trust us on this one.
Stue Bar Zoologischer Garten Hidden amongst the Embassy District and almost engulfed by Berlin’s famed zoo, Stue bar rocks an extremely classy '30s vibe, with a little contemporary design thrown in. The bar menu follows suit w/ prohibition-era classics (with a short history of each drink to accompany) alongside some more modern numbers. What you're drinking: Honestly, you can't beat their martini.
Monkey Bar Zoologischer Garten Freshly opened, this new contender to the Berlin bar scene enviably sits atop the roof of the 25hrs Bikini Hotel, right next door to the zoo, w/ floor-to-ceiling windows to better appreciate views of the, well, monkeys (even from the bathrooms). The cocktail menu is pretty tiki-heavy, but also reps a strong list of classics. What you're drinking: The King Kong; homemade Guatemalan vanilla rum offset by a little cherry bitters & some sugar syrup.
Berlin is the most appropriate (and acceptable) place in the world to go boozy brunching. Not only is the city brimming with restaurants serving all-day breakfast and cocktails, but most clubs are open 24/7 throughout the entire weekend. So forget Bloody Marys being the hair of the dog -- they’re actually a solid pregame cocktail. Here are some of the best spots to get your boozy brunch on in Berlin:
From Los Angeles to San Diego: Every Pit Stop You Need To Make Along The Way
With zero humidity and palm trees in the rearview mirror, cruising down the Pacific coast to San Diego from Los Angeles is summer. Of course, LA traffic can make it less cruiseworthy and more bumper-to-bumper. But with authentic taquerias, whale watching, and iconic surf breaks, there’s a quintessential SoCal pit stop just about every mile of the ride to distract you. Here’s seven summer getaways you can easily hit on the way to San Diego -- just don’t forget the sunscreen and a swimsuit.
Like its hilarious boot-shaped steins, Germany’s beer culture has always been known for its depth rather than its breadth. It’s still pretty common to walk into a bar and ask for your preferred size of beer instead of a rundown of what’s on tap. And that’s what makes Berlin’s burgeoning beer bar scene so amazing -- there are finally new twists on old classics, solid craft brews, and plentiful imports. Here are the best places to sit down and enjoy a cold one: