Monday, October 01, 2012

Berlin, Take 5!

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The first weekend in September saw us make our fifth trip to Berlin - this time for the yearly WEBMU (expat blogger meetup)!

After six hours on the Deutsche Bahn we dropped off our crap at an awesome cheap Friedrichshain apartment we shared with the Regensbloggers (found by them)...but only after making an unexpected donut stop at one of the stops along the way!  Why don't we have Dunkin' Donuts in the south?  (I never thought I'd be pining for Dunkin' but years without local cake donut availability do things to you.)

There had already been several meet-up events prior to our arrival, but for us the first destination was The Bird, an American-owned burger joint in Prenzlauer Berg. Having just had yet another mediocre Heidelberg burger with a dry bun that fell apart immediately (so THAT'S why so many Germans eat them with a fork...), I was pretty excited about the possibility that this place would actually manage to not fuck it up.  And...they managed.  Definitely the best burger I've had in Germany.  The way they get around the bun problem without having to set up their own bakery is to serve them on English muffins, which is pretty brilliant. (Yes, this is sometimes done in the US, but here it's more than just a style choice - it's a way around a big problem!) We've already done it at home ourselves since then.  And, the price was high by Berlin standards but no higher than a burger at O'Reilly's or Joe Molese in Heidelberg.  After dinner we enjoyed some drinks and expat bonding at a nearby pub, answering important questions like, "Which is sweeter: Magner's or Strongbow?"

On Saturday, walking tours of Prenzlauer Berg and Friedrichshain were scheduled, but we'd been eyeing some of the events from the Thursday/Friday schedule that we'd missed - particularly the Stasi Museum and burritos at Dolores.  After considerable debate we skipped the tours and made our own itinerary: morning at the Stasi Museum, followed by lunch at Dolores and the afternoon at the Hamburger Bahnhof modern art museum.  All were fantastic.  Ever focusing on the food - the burrito I had at Dolores was delicious and only 5 Euro!!  Please come to Heidelberg, Dolores!  Although we've gotten quite good at making Mexican food at home, we don't have the equipment to pull off burrito-sized flour tortillas and could really use a local big-as-your-head burrito joint.  Both museums were excellent and well worth the price and time (Stasi Museum 5 Euro/person, Hamburger Bahnhof ~8 Euro/person).  The Stasi museum includes everything from DDR propaganda to retro furniture and decor to spy devices.  Check out my photo album for more details on what's in the museums!

Berlin Sep 12

We met up with the group again for dinner at I Due Forni, where my husband couldn't resist trying one of the horse pizza varieties.  Then drinks and more drinks. 

Sunday morning - hangover time at Frida Kahlo, where brunch was only 8 Euro or something and full of all kinds of options like the usual cold cuts/bread, cereal (Nougat Bits, heck yeah), rice pudding, some kind of incredible lasagne with spinach noodles...the only brunch in Heidelberg that comes close to that variety and quality costs 17 Euro.  So, it was with great reluctance that we boarded the train back to Heidelberg that afternoon after a quick stop at Mauerpark, having just gotten started on all that Berlin has to offer.

We love you, Berlin!

Big thanks to this year's meetup organizers, Snooker/Sweet No and Mandi.  They did a wonderful job - read more about this year's meetup (including, on Snooker's blog, some fun behind-the-scenes info!) at the links below!
Snooker in Berlin - Bag Lady Extraordinaire - WEBMU 2012 Berlin
Snooker in Berlin - WEBMU 2012 - Berlin - WHEW!
Regensblog - Stasi Museum via WEBMU 2012 in Berlin
No Apathy Allowed - Berlin WEBMU 2012: The Report
Sarah Staebler - WEBMU & My Trip to the Embassy
Doin' Time on the Donau - Another Weekend in Berlin
Geek Maedel - WEBMU Invades Berlin

Previous Berlin posts:
Berlin: Third Time's a Charm! (2008)
Berlin: the Return (2008)
Guest Blog: I Sausage Berlin (2008)
Finally Berlin! (2007)
Our last trip to Berlin was in 2010, but I never blogged about it.

1 comment:

  1. Hehe I'm just the same! What you said about your unexpected stop to Dunkin' Donuts inspired me to write a whole post about it!BTW, my new blog is
    imlearninghowtocook.com

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