Neukölln Jun 29, 2020
As a huge bevvy fan, my first challenge in Berlin was to find where my local watering hole was going to be. After moving, there were very few places that I could say were similar to the kind of ‘spit and sawdust’ atmosphere that Hackney provided, but unfortunately exactly the same amount of hipsters ruining once authentic (and cheap) Kneipers. For the sake of liability, I will omit their names, but the best bars I’ve been to in Berlin have almost always been in the Neukölln area. Unfortunately, one of my favourite bars in NK is still fighting a lengthy eviction battle with the landlord who is refusing to renew the rental contract, presumably to gentrify the area. As well as serving great local beer, they support the working class and have been the gathering place of left-wing activists for over 30 years. Within this great establishment, I’ve shared so many great nights and it has been the bonding place for me and a lot of my new family here in in Berlin. A friend of mine and I were supposed to travel the U.K. last year, and 3 days before a flight she caught lice from a lovely chap that was asleep next to her in the same booth. Good times indeed.
Another of my local haunts is a Kneipe that I have never actually seen closed. The constant stream of waifs and strays coming in and out of this cosy little smoke-filled hole in the wall always promises a theatrical evening. One early Saturday evening me and a friend were at the bar and it was relatively empty at this point, and I ordered a double gin and tonic. Being relatively new to the city at this point and had no idea that they don’t exist here because a single measure is far too large to begin with. After being embarrassed by my lack of cultural knowledge, he asked which gin I would like; “Whatever is the cheapest” I said. My German friend looked at me, scoffed and said “You cheap Brit.” From a dark corner of the room came a cackle from an unidentified woman who obviously also found the situation hilarious. Needless to say, I am now a regular and my memories were and continue to be, very fond of the Neukölln nightlife.