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Germany’s welcoming and eccentric capital city is a haven for spirited thinkers, with plenty of art, culture and history. It’s home to countless bars and club hotspots, many of which are world-renowned. Including the mysterious Berghain nightclub or popular Klunkerkranich bar, which attract both locals and international travellers alike.

But what the less obvious bars of Berlin?

For those inclined to adventure, you’re in luck. Berlin is home to an array of hidden bars that you’ve likely missed, each with individual character and plenty of fun to offer. Here, we delve into the must-visit hidden bars of Berlin, and provide an overview of local food and drink experiences that will have you feeling like an authentic Berliner.

Becketts Kopf Bar

Find this hidden gem in the upmarket Prenzlauer Berg neighbourhood of Berlin. You can identify it by the picture of playwright Samuel Beckett, from whom the bar borrows its name, displayed on the front window. To enter, you must ring the doorbell. Inside, you’ll find a small, sophisticated bar where the main speciality is craft cocktails. The bar prefers to use ingredients sourced from local producers, so it’s a perfect opportunity to try authentic German alcoholic beverages. As the bar is small and has a following of loyal regulars, be prepared for an up-close and personal experience.

Be warned that Becketts Kopf allows smoking indoors, so if that's not your vibe, you should perhaps avoid it. If you don’t mind, the bar keeps a selection of cigars for your pleasure.

Bar Tausend

The entrance to the mysterious Bar Tausend is located in an inconspicuous alleyway beneath the train tracks of Friedrichstrasse train station. You must ring the doorbell to the large steel door to be let in. Inside, you’ll find a vibrant speakeasy bar with futuristic decor, split into a large bar area that has regular DJs, big band live music and a restaurant called the Cantina. The staff at Bar Tausend are known for being welcoming and knowledgeable professionals that are able to make cocktails outside of the menu for you to enjoy. Know that the atmosphere changes after midnight when Bar Tausend becomes a little more clubby.

The restaurant offers a mouthwatering food experience, with a fusion menu inspired by Asian, Iberian and South American cuisines. Make sure you reserve a table, however, as they go quick. Finally, like Becketts Kopf, they allow smoking indoors.

Szimpla

Szimpla is an unassuming Hungarian bar and cafe that has plenty to offer to those looking to experience a different cuisine. It’s the sister bar to the popular Szimpla Kert bar in Budapest. The cafe has a selection of traditional Hungarian dishes for all meals of the day, in addition to a range of craft beers that come in cute conical flasks. Unlike Bar Tausend and Becketts Kopf, Szimpla is easier to find, with outdoor seating and a large neon sign welcoming you in. The bar is located in Friedrichshain, which is on one of the corners of the leafy Boxhagener Platz square.

Fairytale

As the name suggests, Fairytale is a bar that delivers magical fantasy to all those who find it. Located across from the Marchenbrunnen fountain in Friedrichshain, a member of the bar’s eccentric staff will let you in after ringing the buzzer. Inside, you will find a compact, cosy bar with elements from fantasy stories, such as Alice in Wonderland. Staff keep up the illusion by being dressed in costume, whilst the decor looks like it was put together by the Mad Hatter himself.

The best part is the high-quality, creative cocktails based on popular fairy tales. If you can’t find something you want on the menu, the bartenders are more than happy to create any bespoke drink of your choice. Note that during peak times, it can be hard to get in, so try to go early or a little later when patrons have moved on.

Buck & Breck

Although not easy to find, Buck & Breck is consistently ranked in the world’s top 50 bars. It is the only bar in Berlin to currently have the accolade. Located in Brunnenstrasse, in Berlin’s Mitte borough, Buck & Breck isn’t meant to be found accidentally. The bar lies hidden behind an unassuming secret door, next to a bistro. To get in, ring the buzzer that says BAR. Inside the small, 30 seat establishment, you’ll find sophisticated decor with dark tones; the type of place where James Bond or a Bond villain wouldn’t look out of place. Here, you’ll find some of the best cocktails in the world.

Note that they allow smoking inside and have a strict no-phone use policy.

How to make sure you don’t miss out on Berlin’s hidden treasures

There are many more hidden bars and restaurants in Berlin that are waiting to be discovered. So, how can you ensure that you don’t miss out?

Food tours in Berlin

There are a variety of food tours available in Berlin that offer the opportunity to taste delicious local dishes, such as the famous Currywurst sausage dish, and the popular Schnitzel dish. The best part is that most tours will delve into the historical background of dishes and give you a good understanding of their cultural significance, making it a paradise for foodies. Another benefit of food tours is that the guide will know of quaint bars and restaurants located off the beaten track.

What about drinks?

Most food tours will also provide an overview of local beverages. There are also specific drink tours and pub crawls that will take you through the city’s most important bars and give you a taste of local drinks. Make sure you don’t miss the Berliner Luft spirit, which has a delicious taste of peppermint. For those looking for something non-alcoholic, try a Schorle, which is a local drink made from half fruit juice and half sparkling water.

Discover the Hidden Bars of Berlin with tabl.

Prepare to experience Berlin like a local, visit tabl.com for a range of food and drink experiences that will guide you through your trip. Book online for an authentic tour of Berlin's pubs and bars.

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