A Foodie Heaven in Kreuzberg, Berlin: Street Food Thursday, Markthalle9

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Here's the thing. 

I miss Berlin. I miss it terribly, I miss it like a lover who's shaped me for life, I miss it like a child I gave up, I miss it like the love of my life. Which it is. 
Beware, a personal post with heavy reflections ahead. If not interested, just scroll until you find "Markthalle 9" written in large letters.

I left Berlin for a reason that might have felt right at the moment but now seems stupid and childish. I left Berlin for another city, also starting with B, also the love of my life. Yes, I'm a bit polyamorous when it comes to cities. Turned out, however, that the love I came back to didn't quite share the feelings. I tried to make it work, I really did. But it was just like with a guy that once used to make you happy and isn't able to anymore when you're older and wiser. I knew life. I knew world. Everything that could have bothered me earlier now has climbed onto the surface. I used to neglect thinking about its downsides when we were happy together, when I didn't know better. Then I did and then I came back and then I saw the surface for what it is. Though it's completely fine if you don't feel that way about Belgrade. I do, and the once great love has changed—I'm not even sure it exists anymore, and if it does, it just flickers somewhere deep down inside of me. So I'll be packing my bags again and looking for something else I need somewhere else. Not Berlin, though. Not this time.

But I do miss it. I miss everything about it. I miss the cobblestone streets of Kreuzberg, I miss the colorful facades sprinkled with street art, I miss the German language, I miss the clean trams, I miss wandering around aimlessly, I miss the markets, the second hand shops, the little international cuisine restaurants, I miss cheap avocado, and salmon, and doner kebabs, oh my God how I miss those. I miss people who are dressed like they don't care, because they really don't. I miss their attitude and I miss how they always always always smile back in the streets. Something I don't see where I live now. 

So I miss Berlin, and I wasn't even aware of the amount and the strength of that feeling before I looked at these photos tonight. Every single one of them was a hard sting of nostalgia. Know what's worse? I have no idea when I'll be going to Berlin next time. Probably not this year. Probably not even in 2018. 

So, I was looking at these photos because I had long intended to publish a post on this place (though I didn't anticipate the emotional intro). I'm a foodie and I won't lie. It was in Berlin that I tried numerous international cuisines that I loved, or just liked. I love that about Berlin. I tried Indian here in Belgrade. I think I'd have made better Indian myself, and I'm not much of a chef. I mean, okay, Berlin is no Mumbai, but if my Indian friend Varsha has taken me and 10 other friends to an Indian restaurant she approved of, then it's Indian enough. Same goes for Thai, and Vietnamese, and Israeli, and Japanese and Chinese and Korean and any cuisine you can think of. They do it right. 

One of the places where you can try international cuisines as well as vegan food and try and buy wines and/or buy fresh vegetables is Markthalle 9 in Kreuzberg, in Eisenbahnstr. 42/42. It's a great hall that on regular days used to host a regular market where you could buy fresh produce (often organic, as it's a huge trend in Berlin). On Thursday, however, they would, and still do, host a Street Food Day where you could taste basically any cuisine there is. From what I've seen on their website, they have changed the concept a little so now you can try some of the foods on other days too, but the schedule is quite messy—so for example you can indulge in Aunt Benny Cake from Tuesday to Saturday, while handmade Italian pasta isn't there on Tuesdays, and so on. 

But everybody is there on Thursday from 5 to 10 PM for Street Food Thursday. Everybody and their grandmother. And their delicious food you had no idea existed, that melts in your mouth while angels are singing. That is, if you decide to grab something while standing and waiting for a free seat, because as you can imagine, good news travel fast. And this is no news, actually. Street Food Thursday has been around for quite some time now—in fact, since April 2013. Yet it didn't bore the locals, nor the tourists. And how could it?! I'd hang out there every Thursday afternoon. I mean, you gotta try out every cuisine and/or vegan place eventually, and then a new food stand will appear.

So if you're going to Berlin anytime soon and will be spending a Thursday there, don't miss this. It might be crowded, but if you actually eat something, thank me later. 

P.S. They are doing a tour and are currently in London. Not that London needs a food market from abroad ūüėČ, but follow them on Facebook and they might pop into your neighborhood. You never know. And you will never have tried enough interesting food. 

P.P.S. I would kill for a Mezeteller right now.

P.P.P.S. If only Dumbledore would appear right now to Apparate me there—it's still open.

Markthalle 9 is situated in Eisenbahnstr. 42/42. To get there, get the U1 line to G√∂rlitzer Bahnhof, or bus nr. 140 and stop at Wrangelstra√üe bus stop. It is open every day except Sunday; for opening times and specific days of week refer to their website.

P.S. If interested in cool things in Berlin, you might like Berlin from above, and Hipster kingdom in Friedrichshein

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