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Welcome to FU-BEST’s Berlin

Welcome to our official FU-BEST blogroll! Here we share everything exciting in and around Berlin with our current FU-BESTers. Of course, everyone else, who is interested to get a glimpse into the perks of being a student in Berlin, is cordially invited along the ride. You’ll find tips for interesting lectures on and off campus, free time activities, event information, our favorite eating spots and many other things that make Berlin unique.

Additionally, there will be a monthly FU-BEST Newsletter, where we keep you up to date on what’s happening right now.

Your Berlin Thanksgiving Guide

Where to celebrate Thanksgiving in Berlin

Plant Based

Plant based and raw vegan colourful gourmet Thanksgiving dinner from Beba Baxter at 7pm on November 16 for 49 € per person. Pre-ticket sale necessary.

Additional info here. 

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 Wartenberger Hof – DAS CLUBHAUS

Thanksgiving turkey buffet and musical entertainment at 6.30pm on November 28. 25€ per person. Pre-ticket sale necessary.

Additional info here. 

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Hard-Rock-Cafe

Three course Thanksgiving menu including corn chowder soup, turkey, and pumpkin pie offered all day on November 28.

Additional info here.

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Harnack-Haus

Thanksgiving dinner at the German American Attorney Association at 7pm on November 27. 25€ per person (student price). Pre-ticket sale possible.

Additional info here.

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 Kochwerk Berlin

Thanksgiving cooking class at 6pm on November 28. Be aware the class is held in German. 89€ per person.

Additional info here. 

For all who prefer to cook themselves

The Turkey

Germans eat turkey for Christmas, if at all, so it’s good to organize your bird in advance. Most Fleischereien will be able to sort a bird out if you give them a week’s notice. Plan on 500 grams per person when ordering, more if you’re fond of leftovers.

Charlottenburg

Rogacki, Wilmersdorfer Str.145/46, Berlin-Charlottenburg (map)
Fresh turkeys available for ~9 €/kg. Giblets are included for no additional charge. Some have said Rogacki can be relied on to have turkey in stock, but the saleswoman recommended placing an order.                                                                                             

Kaufhauf des Westens (KaDeWe), Tauentzienstraße 21, Berlin-Schöneberg (map)
Battery turkeys are ~7 €/kg, organic ones are ~13 €/kg, giblets for ~6 €/kg.

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Friedrichshain

Fleischerei Domke, Warschauer Str. 64, Berlin-Friedrichshain (map)
Frozen turkeys are ~10 €/kg, while fresh are ~12 €/kg (without giblets). They say it’s best to come by in person to place an order, but Domke always has a few turkeys (presumably frozen) on hand.

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Prenzlauer Berg

Fleischerei Gottschlich, Prenzlauer Allee 219, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg (map)
Fresh turkey for ~11 €/kg; giblets etc. need to be ordered separately.

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Schöneberg
Albrecht: Wild & Geflügel seit 1927, Akazienstraße 4, Berlin-Schöneberg (map)
Conventional turkey is available for ~9 €/kg.

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Wedding
Fleischerei Uwe Bünger, Müllerstr. 156, Berlin-Wedding (map)
This bustling local butcher sells free-range Neuland turkeys whose living conditions are carefully monitored. ~15 €/kg, giblets (heart, liver, neck) are included for free.

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The stuffing/dressing

Since you can’t turn to, admittedly, terrifying bags of stuffing mix, you’ll want a sturdy white bread that won’t fall to bits nor stay too stodgy. We suggest cubing Soluna’s La Boule or else what’s called französisches Landbrot, which is sold at many of the organic bakeries. Vacuum-packed chestnuts are easy to find in Berlin grocery stores and often more affordable than in the States, so they’re suited well as an addition to your stuffing.

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The mashed potatoes

Look out for potatoes described as mehlig or mehligkochend (i.e. floury potatoes): they’re the best substitute for russets.

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The pumpkin pie

You can find canned pumpkin at KaDeWe and Broken English. As a cheaper alternative, fresh pumpkins are available at most general supermarkets at this time of the year.

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The sweet potatoes

If you want to make a sweet potato casserole, Süßkartoffel and marshmallows are sold in most grocery stores in the city.

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The cranberry sauce

Cranberries can be found at most large grocery stores like Edeka and Kaufland, as well as most organic shops.

Watching short films at Interfilm

The short film festival Interfilm is Berlin’s third oldest international film festival. If you are into film this is highly recommended. Out of 7000 movie entries, the festival shows about 500 films from different countries, categories and styles.

If you have time for only one event, I recommend Eject – The Night of Weird Shorts on Friday, November 8. Should you have sensetive ears, it might not be your night. Everyone else: be ready to rattle and clap. Entering the theater, you will be given hand tools to determine which of the shown short films is gonna take home the prize for best film of the night.

When? November 5, 2019 – November 10, 2019

Where? Different movie theaters all over Berlin

Programm Hours: Find the program here

Admission: Festival pass and single tickets available

Christmas market season is approaching

We think the best part of the holiday season is that you can visit one of the many Christmas markets that you find all over Berlin. Christmas markets, originally a German tradition, certainly never fail to bring us in a festive mood.

Here are our favorite Berlin Christmas markets and some special market tips on top.

Weihnachtsmarkt am Gendarmenmarkt

No list of Berlin Christmas markets is complete without the Weihnachtsmarkt am Gendarmenmarkt. Here, you can find all the traditional Weihnachtsmarkt goodies that your heart desires, and watch entertaining shows performed by artists from all over the world. Additionally, the popular craftwork tent invites people to watch craftsmen and women at work, giving you a behind the scenes look of how some of the items for sale are made. Located in the midst of historical sites such as the Deutscher Dom, Französischer Dom, and the Berlin Concert Hall, the atmosphere is cozy and the perfect place to experience a traditional German Weihnachtsmarkt. While you need to pay a 1€ admission fee to get in, a percentage of it is donated to a good cause every year.

Where? Gendarmenmarkt 1, 10117 Berlin (U2 Hausvogteiplatz, U2 Stadtmitte, U6 Stadtmitte)
When? November 25 – December 31, 2019
Opening Hours: daily 11AM – 10PM, December 24 until 6PM
Admission Fee: 1€

Lucia Weihnachtsmarkt in der Kulturbrauerei

The market is named after the Scandinavian figure that is supposed to bring warmth and security during the dark winter months. This reflects the theme of the market, which draws visitors in with its red and white Scandinavian décor, cozy atmosphere, and over 60 stalls selling food, drinks, and craftwork.

Where? Schönhauser Allee 36, 10435 Berlin (U2 Eberswalderstraße, M10/M1 Eberswalderstraße)
When? November 25 – December 22, 2019
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday 3PM – 10PM, Saturday and Sunday 1PM – 22PM

Alt-Rixdorfer Weihnachtsmarkt

Over 150 associations and organizations present homemade goods and handcrafts at the yearly Rixdorfer Christmas market in Neukölln. Of course, visitors can also experience all the culinary highlights you can find on a traditional Weihnachtsmarkt, including Bratwurst, waffles, and various kinds of Glühwein, brewed using traditional family recipes. What makes this market special is that the many trees surrounding it are opulently decorated with fairy lights, and together with the various oil lamps spread throughout the market give it a cozy and romantic atmosphere. Additionally, the location of the market, the old town of Rixdorf (founded in 1360), gives it a historical ambiance and further adds to its special atmosphere.

Where? Richardplatz 1, 12055 Berlin (S 41/42/45/46/47 Berlin-Neukölln, U 7 Karl-Marx-Straße)
When? December 6 – December 8, 2019
Opening Hours: Friday, December 6: 5PM – 9PM Saturday, December 7: 2PM – 9PM, Sunday, December 8: 2PM – 8PM

Weihnachtsmarkt am Schloss Charlottenburg

With around 250 stalls, this Christmas market is one of the most popular and well-visited ones in the city. One of the highlights is the impressive illumination of the castle that turns the square into a romantic winter wonderland. Next to traditional handy work, typical Christmas market food and other tasty treats can be found here, inviting you to spend one of the advent Sundays (or any other day) strolling through the most christmassy part of Charlottenburg at this time of year.

Where? Spandauer Damm 10, 14059 Berlin (Bus 309/M45 Schloss Charlottenburg, Bus 109/M45 Luisenplatz/Schloss Charlottenburg)
When? November 25 – December 26, 2019
Opening Hours: Monday – Thursday 2PM – 10PM, Friday – Sunday 12PM – 10PM

Special tip: Designer Christmas Market

The popular Berlin Design Market returns like last year as a Christmas edition, presenting a mix of well-known, undiscovered, and independent designers who will be selling their works on this day. In addition to the numerous designer stalls, live-music and a cocktail bar offering festive drinks (including lots of Glühwein, of course) create the perfect atmosphere to buy unique Christmas presents, or simply stroll around and have a look.  Another unique feature of this Christmas market is the fact that it takes place indoors, so perfect for those who are not too keen on spending hours walking around in the freezing cold. More information can be found on their facebook page.

When? December 8, 2019
Where? Festsaal Kreuzberg, Am Flutgraben 2, 12435 Berlin (U Schlesisches Tor, S Treptower Park)
Opening Hours: 12PM – 8PM
Admission Fee: 2€

Special tip: Japanese Christmas Market

A different kind of Christmas market, the sixth edition of the Japanese Christmas market has become a unique tradition in Berlin, perfect for everyone interested in Japanese culture. Combining German and Japanese traditions, the market presents Japanese artists and craftspeople, music, dance, antiques, art, ceramics, and of course traditional Japanese food and drinks.

When? Beginning of December
Where? Malzfabrik, Bessemerstraße 2-14, 12103 Berlin
Opening Hours: 12PM – 9PM

Special tip: The Green Market Berlin – Winter Edition

Being the most vegan-friendly city in Europe, you can usually find a vegan market somewhere in the city.  This one is not a full Christmas market, but the “Winter edition” addition promises some christmassy vibes. You will find lots of food, of course, and vendors that are selling vegan and sustainable clothing (no leather, wool, silk, etc.), cosmetics, and local arts and crafts. You can find more information on their website.

Where? Wriezener Karree 15, 10179 Berlin (S-Bahnhof Ostbahnhof)
When? November 23, November 24, 2019
Opening Hours: 11AM – 6PM
Admission: 5€

 

 

Days of Jewish Culture

Each year the Jewish cultural festival presents a diverse potpourri of theatrical performances, readings, discussions, exhibitions, church services, and concerts featuring outstanding performers from around the world. This year’s theme is „Shalom Berlin“. Please find the program here.

When? November 7 - November 17, 2019
Where? Synagoge Rykestraße, Renaussance Theater, Jüdisches Gemeindehaus Fasanenstraße and more
Admission: depends on the venue

 

Car free weekend at Friedrichstraße

This first October weekend the area between Friedrichstraße and Französische Straße will be closed for all car traffic to make a stand for climate protection. The event will be accompanied by music, food trucks and workshops.

When? October 5 and October 6, 2019
Where? Friedrichstraße, Berlin
Admission: Free

Berlin Science Week

Berlin Science Week is a 10-day international festival. Based in Berlin, Science Week is the global platform for dialogue and collaboration between science and society to inspire a deeper understanding of the world. Some topics are future of digital identity, medicine or work, food security, the relationship between humans and machines, the politics of inequality, art and science, or climate change economics. This and more will be discussed in over 130 events across the city.

When? November 1 - November 10, 2019 
Where? At participating institutions all over Berlin, Central hub is the Museum für Naturkunde, Invalidenstraße 43, 10115 Berlin. 
Admission:free

LECTURE: On Ecocolonialism and Speculative Crime Scenes

The Anthropocene has been embraced by the humanities, social sciences, and visual arts as a new geologic epoch that captures the planetary dimension of the long-term human impact on the environment. This talk by Federico Luisetti (Associate Professor of Italian Culture and Society at the University of St. Gallen) will instead propose to approach the Anthropocene as the epistemic scene constructed by the scenario methods of Earth system scientists and engineers of the global environment. Introduced and popularized by planetary management research programmes, the Anthropocene is the crime scene of energy megaprojects, the stage for the scenario thinking and socio-ecological modelling of supranational organizations. Marcel Duchamp’s Étant donnésand other artistic crime scenes suggest strategies for delinking from the ecocolonization of the Earth’s future and imagining alternative relations with the environment.

When: November 18, 2019, 7:30pm
Where: ICI Berlin, Christinenstr. 18/19, House 8, 10119 Berlin
Admission:free

LECTURE: Art of Encounter On Non-Human Art Production

A vast set of associations surrounds both popular and academic ideas of what art actually entails. Art is assumed to be expression, experience, and intention — and often at the same time. In order to discard the assumptions that one has to be conscious to make art, one could hark back to surrealism and place art in the domain of the sub- or un-conscience. But then what’s to keep us from stretching things a little bit further, proclaiming non-human natural entities to be capable of art, of authorship?

This event stems from the research project and exhibition ‘Reading by Osmosis’ (curated by Semâ Bekirović), focusing on artworks made by non-human artists — by animals, trees, the wind, and other entities and processes.

After a short presentation of Bekirović’s project, the evening will begin with a lecture by professor Michael Marder under the title of ‚Art’s Articulation‘. In this talk, Marder interprets the activity and role of art as an articulation of things, words, and worlds. Upon taking a look at two regimes of articulation — the spatial and the verbal —, he discusses it as a tool for imagining, bringing about, or simply discovering art without humans.

When: October 29, 2019, 7:30pm
Where: ICI Berlin, Christinenstr. 18/19, House 8, 10119 Berlin
Admission:free

Festival of Lights

Serveral landmarks, historical sights, streets and squares in Berlin will be covered in light projections and video art (hotspots for this are Brandburger Gate, TV tower, Berlin Cathedral, to name but a few). The Festival of Lights will take place for the 15th time this year.

Museumsinsel (Museum Island) during the Festival of Lights
When? October 11 - October 19, 2019, 7pm - Midnight 
Where? all over Berlin

A little Japan in Little Long

Grilled tuna with vegetables and rice.
Udon carbonara with mushrooms

If you want to add a little color to your dinner, we recommend to check out Little Long (Small Dragon) in Kreuzberg, a modern Japanese restaurant that combines traditional Japanese flavours with a western touch and a very colorful interior (all paintings you find in the restaurant are hand-painted by the owner). If you are only a small group, reservations are not necessary (provided that you come early; between 6pm and 7pm). We recommend to start your evening with different starters (Kimchi and Edamame are always a good idea), and proceed with one of their main dishes (the grilled tuna can be very much recommended. For the full menu see their website here). Finally, if you still have room for desert, we have to warn you: you need to be a fan of Matcha, because there is no way around it when it comes to their desert.

Where: Wiener Str. 60, 10999 Berlin
Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday noon-midnight
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