berlin for brooklynites*

*this title is misleading in the following ways:
1. i am only officially a brooklynite as of yesterday {yay for my beautiful new dwelling!}
2. it is actually a guide to berlin for people from all of new york, not just brooklyn
3. i hate when people do i-know-more-than-you guides, so this is more of just my-favorite-berlin-places-that-reminded-me-of-places-back-home-or-didn't-remind-me-just-made-me-really-excited
but i couldn't resist the alliteration.
so without further ado, if you're planning a trip to berlin or are in berlin, here are my two cents {but with the exchange rate, it's probably worth less than that}:
if you practice sunday bagels then go to barcomi's deli {3} for bagels that are a bit denser and chewier than your typical new york bagel and homemade cream cheese that is a bit pub cheese-y.
if you frequent artists & fleas then you must experience the handmade supermarket {4} because they could essentially be extensions of one another. and you could find a beautiful whale drawing like me!
if you spend lotsa money on coffee at joe/grumpy/etc then find chapter one {1 & 8}
if you are expert in braving the crowds at roberta's in the name of good pizza then you will have no problem doing exactly the same at il casolare. it is right along a little river and the pizza is fantastic and doughy.
if you wait in that stupid chicken and rice line on 53rd or whatever then wait in line at mustafa's for kebab. 
if you agree that the 66th st. stand that has no line is just as good if not better then find keb'up {5} and try their döner, but also know that their falafel keeps me up at night.
if you go to mcsorley's on a sunday to dodge the tourists because you totally love the history and vibe then go to die henne and engage in beer and salty fried chicken yumminess.
if you want something you wouldn't find in new york then go to the oststrand {2} to chill in one of berlin's urban beaches. then come back and petition new york to build one with me.
if you <3 spoonbill & sugartown then you will also <3 do you read me? {7} where i discovered a ton of independent food magazines and some books that i immediately amazon-ed to see if they came in english.
if you love building things or doing crafts or just want to have your mind blown to bits then go to the modulor store to see every kind of felt, ribbon, glue... and everything else under one roof.
if you believe that prospect park > central park then go to volkspark friedrichshain because it's not touristy, and there are little creeks and cute things to explore.
if you bike everywhere then you must rent a bike for your entire time there for something like $50 for the week. it is the best most possible thing ever.


it wasn't raining when i left for the winterfeld markt. and the new york in me saw the gray sky and figured i'd duck into a corner bodega for a cheap umbrella if rain got bad. this was not the case and within five minutes i was most way to the markt and soaked. it poured, i hesitated, i stole time fake perusing things under tents. i bought a box of strawberries because every third person in berlin was doing it. i removed them from their bag, used their bag to shield my poor camera from the rain, and then walked slowly slowly back. by the time i reached my door, i had perfect washed strawberries. the best strawberries i've ever had. a kind i'd never had, without any white bits, they were red all the way through. sweet, soft, the best kind of refreshing after a week of straight meat.


and how i was a jelly donut!
{1} horsies!!!!
{2} a sugar brezel at brezel company berlin
{3} holocaust memorial
{4} carmen
{5} tiergarten
{6} about to eat an opera intermission brezel
{7} princess cake at albrechts patisserie
{8} maybe that's an ufer?

i don't mean to be all been there done that when it comes to the touristy things in berlin, but in all honesty, i really did been there done a lot of that when i went to berlin with my daddy years ago. which opened up the opportunity for me to err on the side of living like a local on this visit, and i bought the salmon-colored blazer to prove it. my diet was split between eating things you simply must eat when you are in berlin {brezeln, meaty things, döner, currywurst, und so weiter} and berlin-y versions of things i always eat {following suit with falafel mondays, bagels sundays, pizza fridays, fro-yo every days}. i biked it all off on my rented makeshift molly mobile through the tiergarten and the volkspark friedrichshain and along a bunch of things called ufers. when the time was right, i'd have an afternoon coffee and cake and read night circus or write down observations. i spent quality time with superfriend hammer, attended some operas, and botched allllll the german i learned in high school. oh it what fun berlin is! 

pizza night in kreuzberg

over a doughy-but-not-too-chewy and cheesy-but-not-too-greasy
well-deserved-from-biking-gillions-of-kilometers fantastic margherita pizza from 
il casolare
i somehow survive a charming conversation in broken italian, german, and english
with a new friend, the stranger milania from sicily. 
we sit crowded at a long table, observing what appear to be berlin's most stylish walking on by with open containers.
m and i gesture camera lenses and fresh fish, brooklyn and atlanta.
this, this whole awesome-stranger-meeting, language-struggling thing, self says to self, is why you're on this adventure and what you'll remember when you're old and crusty and settled down. as i wonder why i couldn't exempt myself from pizza night on account of i'm in berlin and should be eating a bratwurst?