Every year a cool person (definitely someone with 3000+ friends on facebook) goes into an unknown, shitty joint with a sparse interior design, blank walls and some vintage furniture and makes it the place to be. For the next couple of months, everyone and their mother charge into the place, overcrowd it, hype it on their blogs and Berlin websites and tell everyone that “if you can’t get in, dude, you’re like, not one of us”. A couple of weeks later, as soon as even the cool people struggle to get past the doorman and have to wait at least two hours for a warm drink to be served, the hating and bitching starts: too many tourists, they raised the prices, too packed with idiots, not the same as before, everything was better when this bar/club/restaurant was underground. It all starts going downhill from here and the search for a new “this is IT” place of the month begins.
Don’t get me wrong; we love those places. They’re interesting because they attract all kinds of people. But it’s true: you’ll get sick of the hype and tension that appear for seemingly no reason. The food is average and the drinks are expensive but people still come in flocks for the true “Berlin experience”. For a while, this was the most exciting thing about Berlin to me, but perception changes and I think I’m kind of over the hot spots for now. In fact, I love discovering places that are nowhere near “cool” but absolutely cater to my needs. Good coffee, good breakfast, good music, good drinks — it’s not the quantity of the visiting people or the super cool minimal interior design anymore that attracts me. I’ve started loving actually getting in touch with people who run their own business, people who care about each and every one of their visitors, who make you feel right at home in their shop.
And that’s basically the story of our new series -Favorite Places — how we try to only be where we love to be anyway. There’s that café next to Marcus’ home across Görlitzer Park where we meet regularly for breakfast, or that little bar where we end up after a party, or that one place where we eat our dessert when we’re on the block in Friedrichshain, called Factory Girl. We love Factory Girl — it’s not “cool” by todays’ kids’ standards, but it’s all we want: good food (the breakfast is definitely underappreciated, they make the most amazing sandwiches), a comfortable location and people we can actually talk to about everything we do and what we love about the city.
When Nico and I first entered the shop to check out if they have good coffee, we were greeted like regulars and asked to try their magnificent Magnolia, a New York inspired pudding type dessert. We instantly fell in love and returned, again and again, looking for shelter, a nice conversation and (I can only say it again) fantastic food and hot beverages.
Long story short: Factory Girl, located in Krossener Straße, Friedrichshain, is one of the rare places where we feel comfortable whether we are in our trainers or in a new dress. It’s cool because it’s not trying to be cool. It’s nice because the products are not of hype, but of quality, and for now this is all that matters to me. Thanks again to Didem and Hüssein for having us over, you guys rock.