Specialty coffee in Potsdam?!? Seriously? For Berlin visitors a trip to Potsdam in the South West of Berlin is not always on their itinerary. As long as you’re not up to doing a lot of sight seeing – castle Sanssouci should be the most famous of the touristy spots there -, Potsdam isn’t that interesting for travelers visiting Berlin (for specialty coffee).
But, Potsdam not only has two specialty coffee places, but so much more to see than the mentioned castle: Did you know there’s a whole quarter of Dutch style houses in the city center of Potsdam? I didn’t until recently.
Even if you only have a couple hours to spend there, the short trip to Potsdam – from Westkreuz in Berlin the S-Bahn only takes about 20 minutes – is very much worth the ride. And, if there’s specialty coffee involved, you shouldn’t think twice.
Let’s start our day out at Potsdam main station, shall we?
Potsdam is actually very tiny compared to the big city Berlin. Only about 150.000 people live here. That’s actually the reason, why you shouldn’t take a car or public transport through the city, but walk.
Trust me, you gonna be seeing so much more, while walking. Hence why I created this little walking guide to show you around.
We start our tour by walking across the bridge over the river Havel, heading towards the ‘Alte Markt’ and walking all the way along Am Alten Markt and Platz der Einheit towards Buena Vida Coffee Club. We should start our day trip with a coffee and a croissant, right?
Buena Vida Coffee Club
This place is not only a specialty café it is also a specialty roastery, a training center for Barista classes, Latte Art and sensory skills as well as a catering company for trade shows and events.
I knew about that place already because of my broad network within the specialty coffee community and from social media.
Why did it take me so long to finally go there…?!? Hm…
Well, as Patrick from Die Espressonisten told me, Patrick (they both have the same name…) from Buena Vida Coffee Club worked with Die Espressonisten before deciding to open his own coffee place.
The space is really bright and has a wonderful warm atmosphere because of all the wooden details.
If you love Flat Whites as much as I do, go for the Flat White with their Adado, a Yirga Cheffee Gehdeo/Ethiopia espresso.
When I tried it, the fruits notes in the coffee exploded in my mouth, literally! I was super surprised, since until then usually acidic espressos in cow milk always tasted like a coffee drink that got stale to me…
And, yes, I said croissants; they have all sorts of croissants, with chocolate, the classic version, with raspberries and such as well as Franzbroetchen, the Hamburg version of a croissant with a lot of cinnamon.
Heading out of the café, how about walking along Brandenburger Strasse all the way towards Brandburg gate?
No, not the famous one. That’s in Berlin, remember? ;-) Potsdam has its own version, but a lot smaller.
Walking along Brandenburer Strasse you’ll come across small shops, boutiques, manufactories, cafes and restaurants, many of them with house made items.
Take Gutenbergstrasse to see the rest of this quarter and you’ll come across Die Espressonisten, café and coffee shop for coffee (mainly from Italy) and all sorts of coffee gear and equipment, especially portafilter machines for coffee shops as well as homebaristas.
Patrick and his wife Delia started Die Espressonisten in 2009, when there was no specialty coffee in Potsdam at all. They mainly offer Italian style and medium to dark roasted coffees, but tend to add lighter roasted coffees to their offer nowadays such as Epitome Coffee, roast manufactory from Berlin Kladow.
If you’re thinking about buying your own portafilter machine for playing around with at home, let yourself show you around their range of home espresso machines while sipping on a cappuccino. It’s huge!
By the way, they just opened a new shop, in Berlin! If you haven’t stopped by famous and popular sight Checkpoint Charlie, it’s just around the corner in Zimmerstrasse 90!
Don’t miss the deconstructed Slayer that is hanging from the ceiling, when heading there!
I hope, you didn’t have cake, yet during your tour…
The next stop on my walking guide to specialty coffee in Potsdam is THE cheesecake place I’d highly recommend. Not the US-American kind of cheesecake style, but more of the German kind. And this is actually worth trying!
The place is called Café Guam and lies in the center of the Dutch quarter.
Did you actually know, that there’s such thing in Potsdam? I didn’t! They build it in the middle of the 18th century for soldier king Frederick William I. Why did they build this quarter? Well, to make the craftsmen he recruited in the Netherlands feel at home for helping with the extension of the city. Not bad, huh?
It really feels like spending some time in a Dutch village while walking through the streets, sneaking into the little shops or stopping by at one of the restaurants and cafes, such as Café Guam.
When I visited this place I was overwhelmed by the broad range of cheesecakes they had. If I could have eaten more than one slice, I would have loved to try all of them. But, unfortunately I couldn’t…
So, I decided for the ‘Eierschecke’, an Eastern German version of the cheesecake, I know from my own childhood very well.
What can I say, it was super delicious, so creamy and soft. If you’re doing the trip together with a bunch of people, try to share as much as possible to try-taste as much as you can of the broad variety.
For the full indulgence, get the Dutch hot chocolate; it’s served with eggnog!
Yep, really! I don’t know if they really serve something like this in Holland, but it was delicious anyways.
Stuffed with cheesecake, you’re ready for some more walking, right?
Take a stroll through the Dutch quarter and make your way to Nauener gate, another town gate worth a photo stop.
Walk along Hegelallee towards your final and most famous stop in Potsdam: castle Sanssouci and its park area.
If you have some time, get in line for seeing the castle from the inside, it still shows the interiors and designs from back when Frederick the Great lived there during summer.
If not, at least take a walk through the park and stop by the Chinese House as well as the Historic Mill of Sanssouci.
If you have more than a couple hours for your day trip to Potsdam, Wannsee area and Babelsberg film studios are on the way to Potsdam or back to Berlin, depending on what you’re up to before or after heading to Potsdam for some sightseeing and coffee, of course.