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There’s now one more reason to drop by Voo Store’s backyard oasis: the coffee and snacks from Toki. Food and drink in the shop used to be provided by Companion but in December 2020 the Amsterdam-based cafe took over the reins, having already built up a large fan base in the Dutch capital since launching in 2015. The Toki team haven’t just brought their concept, but their coffee too, which is made at the Friedhats roastery in Amsterdam. Pastries and snacks, on the other hand, are made here in Berlin by Cee Cee regulars La Maison and Black Isle Bakery. Head to the frontage of the cafe and you’ll likely find John, who worked at Toki in Amsterdam and is now running the Berlin outlet single-handed. If it’s a hot drink you are looking for, John will take great pleasure in preparing the perfect cappuccino or hand-filtered coffee for you, while colder refreshments include Bouche kombucha and craft soft drinks from Japanese company Kimino. Current rules limit the service to through-the-window drinks and snacks but we are looking forward to taking a seat in the Hof very soon!
Text: Annika Hillig / Photos: Sophie Doering
What better way to use all this time during lockdown than by connecting with the land around you? Well Brandenburg natives Ulrike and Laura have done just that: the two hikers have been documenting their countryside walks and bike rides on their Wanderfreundinnen (“hiking buddies”) Instagram channel, giving advice on where to go and sharing beautiful images along the way. The pair have been friends for 12 years, and between studying hotel and tourism management and working in the music business, the two have made it their mission to show everyone how beautiful Berlin’s neighboring state really is. To accompany their page, they have a Komoot profile where they share all their routes with distances, times, locations and images. Ulrike and Laura’s favorite destination is Märkische Schweiz, a starting point for various routes that are suitable for all different fitness levels and interests.
One such trail is the Höhenweg, a 22km hike that takes about six hours and includes a nature park, the beautiful Schermützelsee lake and a path through fairytale woodland. Other recommended routes include the Schlaubetal valley and the beech forests of Grumsin. Besides routes, the pair are full of handy advice to help you make the most of the countryside: always plan your route, try to make it a circle, give yourself enough time for breaks (don’t forget the all-important snacks) and – crucially – wear comfortable shoes. The page is full of positivity and inspiration and is enlivened with personal insights and striking photographs. In sum: the perfect guide to getting out in the greenery.
Text: Lottie Mac / Photos: Wanderfreundinnen
GOURMET TIME AT HOME — ENJOY SOME OF BERLIN’S FINEST FOOD WITH WOLT DELIVERY
As we wait for Berlin’s restaurants to reopen, why not do the next best thing and get dinner delivered to your door? To help you pick from the endless options, we’ve selected five takeaways perfect for spring balcony lunches and weekend suppers at home. Delivery comes courtesy of the blue riders from Wolt, who have been zipping up and down Berlin’s streets since 2020. The Helsinki-based startup lets you order from a huge range of restaurants with just a few taps on your smartphone, and delivery is currently contactless to keep everyone safe. First up: for pizza that doesn’t play by the rules, Schöneberg’s Sironi is the Italian offshoot of the Kreuzberg bakery whose perfectly-baked pizzas come in spelt as well as traditional wheat flour varieties. Over in Prenzlauer Berg, summer has arrived – at least at Tribeca, where the team have already started scooping their Manhattan-inspired vegan ice cream (must-try: the Pistachio Lucuma). Prenzlauer Berg is also home to Fräulein Kimchi – AKA Lauren Lee – who serves up a range of Korean-American goodies from bibimbap bowls and quesadillas to her signature kimchi jars. For a bibimbap taste test, the two Mercosy restaurants in Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain also offer the classic Korean rice dish, including a nutritious sea asparagus and tofu version. Finally, some comfort food par excellence: the indulgent Swedish meatballs from Möllers Köttbullar in Kreuzberg, who have both vegan and traditional beef varieties with either fries or mashed potato on the side. You can order all this using the Wolt app, which since March 2021 serves an even bigger area including Charlottenburg, Wedding and Moabit. Enjoy!
Text: Benji Haughton / Photos: Savannah van der Niet, Johanna Rademacher-Flesland & Cottonbro
If you are new to the app you can get a €6 credit by entering the code CEECEEXWOLT. Check the app for delivery options in your location.
All parents know the problem: almost as soon as you’ve bought your child something, they have already grown out of it. But what if there was an alternative to buying? A more sustainable option? Nomadi has the answer: toys and children’s furniture for rental. Driven by the belief that a minimalist lifestyle still applies during parenthood, Berliners Kristina and Manuel launched their hire service in March 2021. The idea is simple: you select a toy or piece of furniture online, choose a rental period (three, six or 12 months) and the item will be delivered to your door. And when your youngster grows too big or gets bored with the item, you can just send it back. If they fall in love with it, you can pay off the remaining amount and the toy or furniture piece is yours forever. It’s as straightforward – and as sustainable – as that.
As well as reducing your consumption of new products, renting saves you the expense of buying good quality children’s items – which as all parents know soon add up. Upon return, the items are cleaned and restored, meaning they are always in good shape when the next renter receives them. The selection is curated with care, with beautiful pieces such as the balance board sets, an indoor play pavilion made from pine and cotton, and the high chair meets “learning tower”, which can be configured as a hightop seat, a stool or even a daybed/lounger. And there’s more: Nomadi plans to expand the range with travel goods, from bicycle seats and buggies to car seats – in short, everything you need to kit out your little one!
Text: Lottie Mac / Photos: Nomadi
THE LISSOME, PARA & SOFT EIS — THREE INDIE ZINES EXPLORING SUSTAINABILITY AND IDENTITY
Looking for a break from social media and the daily news cycle? At the rescue is Berlin’s thriving indie magazine scene and these three freshly-released issues. First up is The Lissome, a sustainable fashion magazine that since its founding as an online publication in 2015 has offered critical perspectives on the future of fashion. Now the publication is back with its second print edition – Rewilding – featuring 160 pages of editorials, essays and interviews that cross over into areas such as design, society and the environment (expect the likes of poetry about the impact of light pollution). Breaking up these thoughtful, well-researched words are lush full-page photo spreads courtesy of “sustainable photographer” Anna Rosa Krau.
Just as visually striking is the first edition of Para, the “journal for text and image” launched in 2020 by Berlin-based editor Timon Mürer. The theme of this 160-page, illustration-packed publication is “getting lost”, with contributions in English and German from 33 artists and writers from 11 countries addressing subjects such as identity, sex and the pandemic. The writing is by turns poetic and enigmatic, though this is nicely balanced out by the glossy full-page photos. Finally, Soft Eis is the arts and culture magazine started in 2019 that is back with a second issue that explores what is undoubtedly the topic of our era: identity. Given the complexity of this subject, it’s no surprise that the edition stretches to 300 pages, with interviews, essays and stories that always return to the same question: “Who am I?”. 50 contributors share stories of drag culture in Croatia, racial identity in America and the role nightclubs play in safeguarding authenticity. The magazine’s layout is full of surprises, with funky fonts, film photography and textured graphics that give it a 90s rave aesthetic. This kind of careful design can be seen in all three magazines, earning them the right to a prominent place on your coffee table. Time to unplug and dive into print!
Text: Benji Haughton / Photos: Sophie Doering & Soft Eis