Potsdamer Strasse, one of the busiest streets in Berlin before World War II, has long been known for its abundance of streetwalkers, sordid sex shops and strip clubs. But in recent years, art galleries have gravitated to this district, abutting a namesake park. And in the last few years, stylish restaurants, cafes and bars have followed. The sex shops are still here, though fading. Now the Potsdamer Strasse crowd has evolved into a hodgepodge of artists, hipsters, older Turks, and the occasional woman sporting stilettoes, fishnet stockings and a come-hither glance.
This sophisticated Art Deco cocktail spot began creating libations on Potsdamer Strasse long before the artists discovered the area. The extensive beverage list includes the classics, such as the martini and Negroni, as well as the more original tea-infused gin drink, Earl of Victoria.
This popular cafe, which opened last June, offers the usual espresso drinks coupled with comfort food dishes like pulled pork sandwiches, avocado toast and house-made muesli. The minimalist dining room with a high ceiling is lovely for lounging, and the sidewalk tables are great for people-watching in warm weather.
This restaurant, in a space filled with art, serves fare like venison tartare and grilled Duroc pork belly from the Alain Ducasse protégée, Sophia Rudolph. The spot’s discreet courtyard location evokes a secret clubhouse where the city’s art world and fashionistas hang out. (In December, the Panama team opened Tiger Bar next door, pouring craft beer and cocktails.)
Indulge in the German proclivity for avant-garde eyewear at this diminutive shop, opened last April. The shop owner Abdullah Demir sells from his own 10,000-piece collection of vintage never-used eyeglass frames, including eccentric designs seen on Elton John and Lady Gaga and colorful frames created by Karl Lagerfeld.
Stop into the designer Sophie Oemus’s one-and-only shop, set in a courtyard below her atelier. Opened last July, the luxury boutique sells her signature simple but sophisticated ready-to-wear blouses and dresses, many of which are made of satin and leather.