these are the posts tagged ‘café’:

breakfast restaurants

why is it so hard to find a place that serves good, hearty breakfasts where we’re from? i *love* the fact that you could get up at any time in north america and a meal with eggs and carbs is just around the corner.

so naturally, we indulged quite a bit while in canada…

the formula seems simple enough: bottomless mugs of coffee, plus some form of carbs (pancakes, waffles, toast, potatoes, fruit), bacon, and most importantly, eggs — lots of eggs, in all their configurations! in short, brilliancy on a plate.

our european breakfasts feel almost dainty in comparison. these are proper thousand-calorie meals that will keep you full for the rest of the day. personally, i think i’d probably be ok with having a single one of these midday and call it a day…

although i love our toasts and pastries, i think we could use more of this in europe. if i did not already have enough stuff on my plate for a few lifetimes, i would open a place like that (complete with a flock of chicken in the background to supply the essential ingredient).

if anyone wants to do just that, i’d probably volunteer to beat some eggs! :D

zimt & mehl

i’ve wanted to write about this place around the corner for ages now… it’s a very normal café & bakery, the kind of place you have in practically every corner of berlin, filling the street with the smell of baked gluten at certain hours. the pastries are the opposite of fancy, the coffee is very meh… it isn’t hip or cool at all and for a reeeally long time, the background music was exactly the same. every. single. day.

and yet, we love it so much (and come back so often) they already know how we take our coffees without asking… it’s lovely!


there are 2 things rather special about zimt & mehl. first of all, it opens at 6am! in a city where a café that opens before 10am is hard to find, this is extraordinary. it allows us to come in early and do one of my favorite morning rituals: the early morning study sessions. we show up as early as 7am, get a coffee, sit down and just study something, while all around us, people read their newspapers and grab their coffees-to-go and sandwiches before heading off to work.  

sometimes friends join us, and for one hour or so we go over online classes or educational podcasts, translate ted talks, study languages… anything goes, as long as it is learning or working towards a specific (not work-related) goal. right now i’m studying gut flora, paulo is doing a course on stocks and bonds and our friend max is learning korean. i’m an early morning kind of person, so i find it nice to jump out of bed and right into something.

second, they make omelets! big, fluffy omelets! you pick the ingredients, and they’ll make them for you. yes, they still come with bread (or this wouldn’t be germany), but if you skip that or push it towards the other end of the table, you’ll be fine for a no-frills, gluten-free meal. for people who are a bit picky about that, this is nothing short of a small breakfast revolution. plus, eggs are pretty much still my favorite thing – so this makes me happy.


and there you go: our favorite café in the whole of berlin! sometimes it’s the little things that count the most :)

madame zucker

it feels like it hasn’t stopped raining since we came back from portugal, in the end of june. gloomy days, cold and wet, as if it was back to school weather already. it makes us shy away from summer foods and turn to warmer comforts instead… like hot chocolates, cappuccinos and pancakes!

madame zucker is a breath of fresh air in these parts of neukölln. berlin cafés tend towards the shabby side, but not here. the mismatched white & red furniture is fun and light, there are wooden floors, red polka dot table cloths, a fresh flower in every table, low-volume music… it all seems to say “you’re too tense, relax here for a bit, have fun”. the word gezellig comes to mind :)

and then… we might have a slight obsession with pancakes, crêpes and the likes – it’s one of the first things we look for when we move. nothing beats a good breakfast for comfort, right? it’s my favourite meal of the day.

we’ve had other pancakes in berlin, but they were “cakey”, or drenched in cheap chocolate… do people really think they can replace nutella?! fools!! so it took a few tries until we found madame zucker’s pancakes, which were hiding just around the corner from our house, tucked away on the middle of an unexplored menu. behold this banana beauty:

it’s perfection! :) yes yes, they also have cakes, croissants and the typical german brunch fare – although why anyone would settle for less than exquisite pancakes on a cheat day is beyond me, but apparently some people (*cof* boyfriend *cof*) like variety. bah!

madame zucker, on wildenbruchplatz 5, is open everyday from 10am to 8pm. now you know :)

2 months in berlin

in a sharp contrast with little known slovenia, everybody seems to know something about berlin. people ask us, persistently: have you been to the brandenburg gate? have you seen the berlin wall? what about the holocaust memorial? have you eaten currywurst? did you climb the tv tower in alexanderplatz?

to which we answer with a relaxed “yeaaaah… we’ll get there”. we don’t feel any of this urgency to visit all the landmarks, and do lonely-planet marathons… we’ll be here for a while, so we’re taking our time, enjoying the gorgeous summer weather, riding our bikes up and down the cobbled streets of neukölln. just soaking it all in, sipping coffees in the sun.

so far, so good, i’d say. :)

le petit café

when i think of european cities, i think about intimate cafés. lovely, warm and cozy cafés, with steaming expresso machines, newspapers and a crowd of happy people, sipping their cups of coffee and eating chocolate cake. do you have this mental image too? i was secretly hoping ljubljana would be a bit like this, having heard good things about its cafés.
le peti café

so on sunday, we tried le petit café (trg francoske revolucije 4).
mon petit café :)
paulo's not so petit café
poached eggs with spinach

the place was crowded! and no wonder: good food, good coffee, nice decoration, not expensive… it was perfect. well except… the cups and mugs. sorry to be this picky, but it as if they got the whole supermarket shelf of cheap luminarc mugs (plus a few spare they had at home) and put them to use. they don’t look so nice on a café and almost ruined my bohemian vision of this brunch…

…almost. :) it was a good start, i’m looking forward to more “café testing”!