A Walk

A walk

A walk

A walk

A walk

A walk

A walk

A walk

In the process of building up a new business, a lot of time I get either stuck, something drags me down, or I just need to clear my head and take some time to mull certain things over. That’s when I reach for a camera and go for a walk. It does wonders, every time. No computers, no phone, just the camera, Berlin, and me.

My current favorite is the Polaroid 110B and some gorgeous (although pretty expired) 664 black and white film.

Great soundtrack for a walk: Pantera and Bad Religion

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Lunch Break at Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport

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As I’m working from home now most of the time, I’ve made it my new personal regiment to head out on a bike ride for lunch instead of eating. Served me well that it’s been very summer-y all week long so far.

Just the other day, on my first 20km round through Berlin, I passed the old inner city airport Tempelhof, one of Hitler’s finest, if you will. As I was already running late I postponed a visit for another day, and that day turned out to be today.

The airport was closed down some two years ago, and has since been turned into a public park of epic proportions. Airstrips, runways and all roads on the field are available to the general public. Riding around that area on a bike is incredible. Amidst all the talk to turn it into a commercial ground, I’m now glad it turned out the way it did, and that the city is committed to investing more in it.

Obviously I couldn’t pass the chance to bring a camera, so Polaroid 355 loaded with expired Polaroid 664 film it was. If you’re in Berlin and feel like being out and about for a bit, Tempelhof is pretty great. Of course you should be on the lookout for a tour through the buildings, which are actually the masterpieces of this airport.

The Michelberger Hotel Photo Extravaganza

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If you’re a regular over at my Flickr stream, you may have noticed an awful lot of photos of one particular place lately, the Michelberger Hotel. It’s kind of like the Ace Hotel of Berlin, and an incredibly photogenic spot, at least the lobby and the restaurant.

As for their rooms, you be the judge, either by looking through their gallery, or by staying there for a night or two.

If you’re looking for reasonably priced lunch, this is a good place to go. We’ve been going there quite regularly for a while now, meeting up with friends for lunch sometimes. If you’re in the area, pay it a visit, and don’t forget to bring your camera.

Cameras and films involved: Mamiya C33 with Fuji Pro 800Z, Polaroid Spectra with Softone Film, Olympus XA with Kodak Portra 400VC and an Exa 1a with Rollei Retro 100.

The Coffee Shop Diaries: The Barn in Berlin

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The last two months have been pretty crazy for me. I somehow managed to travel through half of Europe (at least that’s what it feels like), still manage to get some stuff done, spend quality time with family and foster my love for coffee.

When working for a client in central Berlin, I regularly found myself going back to a coffee shop that just recently opened (and which I just came across googling for places to buy a Hario V60 dripper in Berlin). The Barn is shaping up to be my new favorite coffee shop in Berlin. Of course they’re selling good sandwiches, cake and some local groceries too, but they’re really ramping up their coffee department.

They started out simple, with an espresso machine and a pretty visible collection of Hario V60 coffee drippers. Even then you could tell that coffee is an important part for them, and you could watch the owner picking up all the tricks and coffee making trade secrets from the rather young baristas. Pretty noteworthy is the fact that one of the baristas is from Vancouver, the other from New Zealand. Also, it turns out that the guy from Vancouver worked at the Elysian Room, together with Nathan, Claire’s boyfriend, the guy who pushed me over the edge into coffee geekism. Small world, eh? (see you how I snug in a Canadianism?). Needless to say the coffee is pretty great. Flat white, single drip, you name it, they’ll make it, and with all the care you’d expect from a good coffee shop.

Anyways, over the last month they’ve extended their coffee area, added more equipment to make single drip, filtered coffee, AeroPress and even woodneck coffee, an accessory that’s next on my list to buy. They’re also importing coffees from roasters around the world on a season basis. Right now they’re serving single origin Coffee Collective coffee, in September they served Stumptown beans. All the caffeine buzz in the world couldn’t keep from trying one of their light Kenya AA roasts. I have yet to try their house blend though, but turns out I’m still maxed out with beans from the coffee for prints swap.

As a nice addition, they’re also selling Hario coffee brewing equipment, high quality stuff from Japan that’s pretty hard to come by in Europe unfortunately. Speaking of equipment, I finally caved and bought a Hario V60 coffee dripper and a Hario Skerton hand mill. Great stuff, single drip really is a revelation on how easy it is to make great coffee.

Food Bloggers in the Wild

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The wild being Berlin. Molly visited Berlin, and obviously we had to give her the grand tour of the eastern part of Berlin. There was currywurst, there was good coffee, and there was schnitzel. The Wednesday Chef was in there too every now and then. And boy, they’re both pretty awesome. Molly even approved of my mushroom risotto!

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In other news, I’m spending this and next week taking care of Mari until J comes back home from work, because the kindergarten is closed for summer holiday. And I’m loving it. It’s nice to spend some quality time with my daughter, it really is. I get the feeling she enjoys that too.

But man, it’s still frickin hot. We had around 37 degrees Celsius over the weekend, and around 35 degrees today. Our apartment just never really cools down, staying close to 30 degrees even during the night. That is some heat wave bitch, I’m telling ya.