Berlin Book Fix – No.4: Curious Fox New and Used English Books

img_20161022_180755-1Where to find books in English in Berlin?

No. 4 – Curious Fox New and Used English Books in Neukölln. Excellent selection of Irish writers, lovely spot for a cup of tea.

The Curious Fox has its burrow on Flughafenstraße, where the hill dips down again  from the Flughafen Tempelhof heights towards the shopping district around Rathaus Neukölln.

It is a cosy shop with a red sofa by the entrance and a couple of easy chairs in the back room – you can also get tea or coffee at the counter. Locals drop in for a chat as much as to browse the collection.  Continue reading

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Berlin Book Fix – No.3: Saint George’s New and Secondhand English Bookshop

img_20161020_143607.jpg Where to find books in English in Berlin?

No. 3 – Saint George’s New and Secondhand English Bookshop in Prenzlauer Berg. Well-stocked with interesting titles. They know what they are doing.

You enter through the fiction section. Plenty of good things here. The nonfiction section – starting by the cash register – is ample and organised into many themes. Genre literature and children’s books are in the very back. There are a few comfy chairs around – leather chesterfield ones, the type I would like to have in my own library, should I ever have the room for one. #classyreadingnook Continue reading

Berlin Book Fix – No.2: Dussmann’s English Bookshop

img_20161013_170224.jpgWhere to find books in English in Berlin?

No.2 – Dussmann’s English Bookshop: Two floors of well-selected fiction and non-fiction.

Fair warning: You’ll not only find here what you’re looking for, but also what you hadn’t been looking for. Look for the recommendations on the central table in the downstairs fiction section, then head upstairs to nonfiction and the comfy window seats.

Continue reading

Understanding cheese – A visit to a Parmiggiano-Reggiano workshop

The taste of cheese curd changed my life.

I had been well-trained in the art of composing a cheese board: combine fresh with aged cheeses, cow milk with goat and sheep, soft textures with firm, subtle aromas with pungent. Add wine. Achieve satisfaction. I was even getting rather proficient in remembering the curriculum of particular cheeses: this one from high mountain ranges, covered in luscious pastures, that one from craggy hills where sheep roam freely nibbling on wild herbs. But I hadn’t yet quite understood cheese.  Continue reading

Udaipur works.

Udaipur, the busy city

Udaipur builds, Udaipur cuts marble, Udaipur welds. Udaipur roasts chickpeas and fries sweets, Udaipur sells vegetables and weaves baskets. Udaipur serves dinner and massages feet. Udaipur hosts weddings and directs traffic. Udaipur drives minibuses and motorcycles. Udaipur gathers firewood and fetches water. Udaipur studies. Udaipur works. Continue reading

Berlin Favourites – Pizza a Pezzi

Just a picture of tomatoes

Just a picture of tomatoes

This one is about simple pleasures. The pleasant and civilized feeling of grabbing a bite to eat after work on your way to a meeting, and that bite being a slice of fresh pizza made with good ingredients, served hot on a board, with a glass of red wine – for 4 Euros. Served in 5 Minutes. Good food IS possible, even in a hurry and on a Neukölln street corner. They have a few choices – one of them, to my absolute delight, is ‘nduja, the chilli-spiced soft pork sausage from Calabria. It sits on top of the rocket-covered pizza slices, like an orange-red devil’s egg. In the oven, the pork fat melts and the ‘nduja becomes a little chunky puddle of heat on top of your crispy steaming slice of dinner. Fantastic. Though I recommend beer with that.

There is ample place to sit at wooden tables, and in warm weather they open all the windows wide and serve you and your friends hot delicious pizza with your umpteenth beer of a summer evening.
What do you call walnut-sized amorphous pieces of soft yet solid something? Not chunks, as in bread. Not balls, because they aren’t. Clump sounds to heavy, so does clod (plus would you want to eat a clod? I certainly wouldn’t).  Nearly a glob, though that would be too soft, like mashed potatoes, and you don’t spoon ‘nduja, you dig it out with your fingers…but I digress. Must be the wine.

Pizza a Pezzi, Weserstraße 208, 12047 Berlin-Neukölln.