By Molly Hannon in Berlin—
It is no exaggeration to say that bread is the staff of life in Germany, and although the recent organic health-food renaissance may make whole-grain bread seem like a recent phenomenon, it clearly is not. This wholesome, dense bread dates back to the time of the Gauls and Visigoths and has withstood repeated modern efforts to refine it.
Although bäckerei are a common fixture on any Berlin street, not all loaves are created equal. But fear not, here’s a quick(-rising) guide to three of my favorite bakeries in Berlin:
Soluna Soluna Brot und Öl.
Gneisenaustr. 58, 10961 Berlin
(+49) 30 61671191
Mon-Fri, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., Sat 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sun 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Owner, Peter Klann is a baker of the Old World. His Kreuzberg-based bakery’s wood-oven stone near the entrance hints at the quality of loaves that rise here, luring customers in with the yeasty aroma of freshly baked bread.
The shop offers a range of traditional German style brots, as well as some foreign-inspired starches, such as Ligurian Olive Bread or the traditional French baguette. There are also house-made spreads (known as “pistes”), cheeses, cured meats, leberwurst, and other amiable bread companions available for purchase.
Mehlitzstrasse 7, Wilmersdorf
(+49) 30 873 8099, weichardt.de
Tues-Fri 8 a.m. – 6:30 p.m., Sat 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Located off a sleepy street in Wilmersdorf, Weichardt’s modest entrance and size belies its reputation when it comes to the art of German bread-baking. Although a small space, it manages to craft a vast variety of German-style breads that easily rival the size of your head.
Since its inception in 1977, Weichardt has leavened its reputation amongst Berlin bread-lovers dishing out traditional loaves, such as Roggenbrot (rye) and Volkornbrot (whole-grain). If you have sweet tooth, then their Schokosahne Torteand, a decadent confection composed of bitter chocolate and cream is a must.
Seelingstrasse 30, Charlottenburg
(+49) 30 322 8880, brotgarten.de
Mon-Fri 7 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Sat 7 a.m.-2 p.m., Sun 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
The whole-grain bread movement first took shape in the late 19th century under the direction of the “life reform” movement, which sought to return dense unrefined bread to the table and reinstate its place in German life in order to counter the rise of starchy white rolls. A close cousin of the Austrian-led organic movement, its hearty reign continues today and Brotgarten, located in Charlottenburg is further evidence of it.
Founded in 1978, Brotgarten is considered one of Berlin’s first whole-grain bakeries. It offers an impressive variety of 29 whole-grain style loaves keeping customer healthy (not to mention full). Next-door is a sister cafe, where you can dip your crusty loaf in some warm soup or indulge in the traditional afternoon, kaffee and kuchen ritual with a sweet slice of their Linzertorte and a frothy latte macchiato.
Also in our guide: If this post has raised your interest, stop loafing around and head over to our Berlin guide where you’ll find a wide-variety of information on budget travel, including reviews of the best budget hotels in Berlin.