ask Tom about
music venues • café • breakfast and brunch • soul food • parks • pub • beer gardens
What do you do and why do you do it?
I generally do quite random things. I love to explore, listen to new bands, try out new restaurants or cuisines, travel to random places, all in all, live life to the fullest. Together with my best friends and family. Or with random others :)
What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?
Kurfurstendamm and it's surroundings. The capitalistic part of West Berlin that has definitely lost it's glory. Go there only if you want to shop in the same stores as you do at home, with lots of people that are the same as all the other people.
What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?
BBQing on Tempelhofer feld. Amazing place and there's always a good vibe if you get to BBQ there. However, the weather and busy schedules mean that I've only got to do it twice in 4.5 years.
What’s the most decadent / extreme dish you ever ate in Berlin and where did you get it?
The 'teller' at Azzam. Azzam is an amazing middle-eastern restaurant in Neukolln. Very chaotic, very cheap and very good. If you order the teller for 3 people, you'll eat for a week with 3 people.
What restaurant in Berlin looks crap, but the food’s amazing?
Imren, in Neukolln. It looks like a dodgy kebab place and it is. The daily dishes are incredible though. Plus, you get free tea and the most 'authentic' vibe in Berlin.
What’s the one place you think is overrated in Berlin?
Checkpoint Charly. Sure, there's some historical meaning, but it requires a whole lot of fantasy to still make something interesting out of it at this point. It's loaded with tourist traps (souvenir shops, bad currywurst, fake soldiers posing for pictures) and there's no real history left.
What’s the one place you think is underrated in Berlin?
The neighbourhoods. After visiting Mitte and all it's historic sights, visit Prenzlauerberg, Kreuzberg or Neukolln. That's where the real Berlin happens and you get a sense of what the city is really about. You'll also find plenty of great sites with great historic significance there (Tempelhofer Feld, Mauerpark, East Side Gallery etc).
What are the Berlin spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?
As a first-time visitor, don't miss out on the city's fascinating history. Make sure to cover both the cold war period as well as the 2nd war period. For the cold war, don't skip the a walk by the remaining parts of the Berlin Wall at East Side Gallery. For the 2nd World War, there's really not that much to see. Rather consider doing a tour on the topic, that tells you all about the relevant places and sights.
Tomorrow’s your last day in Berlin. How do you spend it?
I'd get my girlfriend and all my best friends together in one of my favourite places (see the map). I'd probably start with a walk and a picknick or BBQ on Tempelhofer feld, then move on to one of the many great bars and watch some of the excellent live music that comes around almost daily. Then we'd end the night overlooking the city at Klunkerkranich.
What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?
Lviv. A lovely city in West-Ukraine. Small, cosy and very friendly people. It has great food, good nightlife and it's a really nice place to simply walk around and relax as well.