Herb Hoodiny
Moments from my travels around the globe

Coffee Vibes in Berlin

For my next piece of "Coffee Vibes" I am returning to my hometown Berlin to present you my personal Top 3 Coffee Places in town. Not too many cities in the world are quite like Berlin - and the coffee scene resembles that in perfection. From the roasting geniuses at 19 Grams, the artful vibes at Westberlin all the way to Ben Rahim with its unique Arab twist - Berlin sure does not lack varieties of excellent coffee. 


Located in the heart of Berlin on the world famous Friedrichstraße and the Checkpoint Charlie just in plain sight, Westberlin is more than just a cafe offering some excellent third wave coffee. It 
The concept of it allows you to browse through contemporary art, a deep collection of magazines, while you sip on your coffee or enjoy some delicious breakfast.
Art is all around at Westberlin. Especially in a city like Berlin, this couldn´t resonate more with the big and still growing culture of artists.
I personally still would consider myself a big-time amateur in the art scene but I know a good coffee when I get one. 
Serving Drop Coffee on a regular basis, definitely made me a frequent customer instantly. During my recent visit to Stockholm, I fell in love with their roasting abilities and how awesome it is to enjoy some Scandinavian design along with Scandinavian expertise in coffee!


19 Grams
Some people may refer to them as TresCabezas, but the cafe´s in Berlin are known as 19 Grams. 
And what can I say - there are some very talented roasters all around Berlin but to me, 19 Grams are absolutely at the top and never disappoint with a brew.
From the expertise of roasting to brewing and even having a nice talk at the counter, all bases are covered when it comes to customer satisfaction.
Due to the close proximity to my university, I am a regular visitor at their cafe on Chaussee straße, which is about 5 minutes from the Naturkundemuseum (Natural history museum) and maybe 10 minutes from Berlins central station.
During my recent visit, when I was preparing for this article, I just finished watching the Netflix series Unsolved (about Tupacs and Notorious BIGs murder). Fitting my mood they were having 2Pacs greatest hits on and I loved it. But that´s just a side note.

They do have table service, which I really like. You don´t get the crowd in front of the counter and no annoying lines. 
Plenty of space and warm lights immediately gives you a cozy atmosphere to chill out. 
At the counter you will be met by their motto "Bloody good coffee" and that is no understatement.
I had the pleasure to try 4 different beans and let me tell you about them real quick.
One Filter was the Mukimba out of Rwanda, which I always love for the unique taste. The soil in Rwanda gives the flavour a taste that really sets them apart from many other african coffees, if you ask me. 
The other Filter and my absolute favorite was the Colorado Geisha out of Costa Rica. Dark grapes, Kiwi and Marshmellow. What may sound exotic, definitely is exotic and a majestic coffee delicacy! They also had it as a batch brew during my visits. If you have a chance to get a cup of it - don´t miss out!

Then the two Espressos were Ze Pato from Brazil - Almonds, Milk chocolate and butter. Really smooth taste and naturally processed perfection. 
The second Espresso was another Costa Rican bean - the Villalobos from the Hacienda Sonora. The body and aftertaste of the Villalobos sets this one also apart from your everyday espresso bean. Very characteristic and yet not too dominant.

You can also get a coffee subscription and order their coffee online to you doorstep, give them a look if you click here !


Ben Rahim

An absolute unique coffee experience is what you get when you enter Ben Rahim. Located in the Hackesche Höfe. Just outside of Hackescher Markt you escape the hustle and bustle of one of Berlins hotspots and enter a chill, third wave coffee mecca mixed with an arab twist I never experienced anywhere else in the world.
It always feels like I´m literally leaving Berlin for some moments, because this place is like no other to me.
From the beautiful tree logo, to the calm vibes and atmosphere. 
The beautiful map of Tunis to your right and then the impressive Ibrik set to your left. 

But besides the impressions and feel of Ben Rahim, you get coffee excellence of course. 
Humberto, the barista, is full of wisdom and knowledge and it always adds to the experience, when you not just get a great cup of coffee but learn so much about the process and origin of the bean. 
Ben Rahim´s regular roaster are the world renowned coffees from Square Mile in London. 
I tried the Finca Tasta from Peru as a pour over. 
The anaerobic processed bean gives it a very clean and delicate taste. The Guava, Mango and lemon zest give it the perfect fruity aftertaste.
But if you really want to experience coffee in its pure form, go for the Ibrik! 
One of the oldest brewing methods brings out so many different things out of the beans.
Humberto prepared it for me using the same beans and wow, I sensed the same taste but so much more intense. 

Pay them a visit and once you´re there, you might as well try some of the baklava!

In addition they vary the filter of the week and just this week they had Qima Coffee out of Yemen, which of course makes it very rare and special, due to the very difficult time the country is having.