I’m just going to say it – I think Berlin is my favourite city in the world at the moment. It’s full of interesting people, wonderful architecture, green parks, it’s perfectly flat for cycling – and it’s home to some of the best vegan food we’ve ever stuffed our mouths with.
Since reforms in 2001, Germany’s capital city has been split into 12 districts. Each has its own local authority while still being subject to Berlin’s city and state government. We stayed in an apartment in Mitte, but we definitely spent most of our time over in Treptow-Köpenick. We found the vibe in the South East district laid back, and spent our time walking through parks enjoying a beer or two. Treptow-Köpenick is the largest district in Berlin and has the lowest population density which means that even though you’re in an globally-recognised city you’ll never feel crowded. There’s always a spot of grass to get your toes in or a seat in a cafe or bar to watch the world go by.
If we ever leave Sheffield to live somewhere else, Berlin is top of our list. We can’t get enough of this city, and it’s getting to the point where a visit or two a year isn’t enough. Here’s where we think you should do when in Berlin. Get out and explore, then you can decide if it’s the tastiest city in the world.
Get your street food fix at Markthalle Neun
Head on over to Kreuzberg on a Thursday night to soak up the vibes and the smells at Markthalle Neun, one of Berlin’s most-loved street food spots. Not all the vendors are vegan, but the ones that are (or that have vegan options) are clearly labelled and easy to sniff out. Found inside an old warehouse, there’s plenty of room to to explore all the tasty delights on offer and loads of room to sit and tuck in to food with friends – or strangers.
The food on offer is always changing, so we’re not sure exactly what you’ll find when you get there, but we are 100% certain it’ll knock your socks off. On our visit we filled our stomachs with some Egyptian stew, a few bao buns, a stack of savoury chickpea waffles and washed it all down with a few vegan beers.
Go nuts at Brammibal’s Donuts
Just going to bottom line this one – these are the best donuts on the planet. There’s really no need to say anymore, but we will. They’ve got the everyday (blueberry, cinnamon sugar) and the outrageous (pumpkin cream cheese, chilli chocolate and figs) covered. We got a box of 12 and wish we bought more. We also scoffed a couple of delicious bagels down our necks. Their new menu looks spot on and they’re always posting the most amazing looking donuts on Instagram. This is always the first place we visit when we get to Berlin.
Scoop some ice cream at Kontor Eismanufaktur Berlin
One of our first stops when visiting this tasty city was this perfect little ice cream shop. Just north of central, it’s well worth the short walk, or you could always jump on a bike. The range of ice cream on offer will stop you in your tracks and force you to make a few hard choices, or get lots of ice cream. Our favourite part of the whole store is the little sticker on the cone holder that simply states ‘Vegan means I’m trying to suck less’. It sure does.
Get all posh at Lucky Leek
Where to even start? This fancy pants, fine dining restaurant proves that vegans never have to slum it when it comes to food. Their three-course or five-course meals are available with wine pairings, and the menu itself will honestly blow you away.
On our visit, our fully plant-based vegan meal included egg mayo on toast, watermelon gazpacho with peanut satay, pea risotto with breaded seitan and a whole host of accompaniments, a cheese board and a chocolatey pudding. Slurp. Honestly, we’ve never eaten food like it. Perfect for a celebration.
Use your hands at Yellow Sunshine Burger
Be sure to sit your buns down here if you’re stopping in the German capital. After much deliberation, we got involved with a chicken burger, a fish burger, currywurst and a slab of gateau cake. We wolfed it down and would have gone back for seconds if we didn’t have to catch a train.
Yellow Sunshine Burger has a proper chill vibe that perfectly suits its canteen style. And if that hasn’t persuaded you then you can buy soap made from used fat from the fryer. Sadly, it doesn’t make you smell like the food. Probably for the best or we’d end up eating ourselves.
Drink coffee and kombucha at Black Sheep
Not only is Back Sheep an all vegan cafe, but it’s also the home of Berlin Kombucha Society. Talk about 2-4-1. Black Sheep was opened back in January 2016 by owners Lucy and Audie. The pair had been bottling their kombucha and selling it to cafes before opening their own spot. The menu is changing all the time so the staff have the freedom to create interesting seasonal food. It’s the perfect place to relax with friends or work on your laptop. Definitely check ’em out while you’re in the city.
Get your kebab fix at Vöner
Surely every vegan planning a trip to Berlin has heard of Voner – where vegan meat is served on a spit. Yup, Berlin has its own (not greasy) vegan kebab shop to clobber your tastebuds with some serious flavours.
We dropped by right at the end of our trip, and it was certainly the perfect way to round off a food-fuelled tour of this tasty city. No sharing here, just two kebabs and two plates of cheesy chips. The kebab was meaty and saucy and everything it needed to be. The chips were spot on too.
We’ve put all these picks together on a single map, so if you’re visiting Berlin you can use it as a pocket guide for sourcing vegan treats.
Want to write a vegan guide for your neck of the woods or somewhere you’ve visited? Then let us know, we’d love to feature it on the site.