On a relatively sparse stretch of Danziger Str. is an unassuming flavor heaven — a Mexican and Latin American grocery store called Chili & Paprika. Stepping inside immerses you in a world of products that rarely make an appearance in Berlin. Beautiful bottles of mezcal and tequila line shelves. Various chilies cover an entire wall: serranos, jalapenos, chipotles, in adobo, plain, whatever your heart or recipe desires. There’s a candy section, a tortilla section, and even a Dias de Los Muertos altar. Owner Mathias Jung is a Berliner with no apparent relation to Mexico or anywhere else in Latin America. In fact, he tells me, he’s never even been there. His connection to the region comes from a love of chilies. Initially just a chili shop, Chili & Paprika grew over time with requests from the clientele — mainly Latin Americans living in Berlin. It now holds 600 unique products including specialty items like fresh queso from Oaxaca and fresh poblano and serrano peppers. Check it out to recharge on some color and a lot of heat. (Text & Photos: Zeynep Lokmanoglu)
Zeynep Lokmanoglu moved to Berlin recently after living in New York for most of her 20s. She has been working on a book of short stories, and enjoying the “Kaffee und Kuchen” lifestyle.