Winter is well and truly here. And it’s nothing more riveting than grey skies, rainy days and sticking your hand in the oven (because no one owns a microwave in Berlin. Fact.) to pull out your burning hot heat pack. Get used it boys and girls, there’s two possibly three more months of it. Good news is, our mate, Fanni from PonyDanceClyde is German and she knows how to deal with freezing temperatures.
So who is this Fanni girl, anyway:
- Yeah, first things first, Fanni comes from Stefanie (we were wondering too).
- A product of the South, she has learnt to mask her Swabian roots after five odd years in Berlin.
- On a typical Sunday she is either looking for the perfect brunch situation or watching football documentaries, real talk.
- PonyDanceClyde all came about at her kitchen table in 2011 and since then she has been blogging about travel, music and fashion.
- When she’s not putting the metaphorical pen to paper, you’ll find her DJ’ing parties, buying red lipstick and buying fancy hats coz that’s the way she rolls.
Here are Fanni’s top tips on how to have a better than average winter in Berlin.
Never in my life as a Berliner would I have thought that the harshness of Berlin’s winter months are able to bring about something as wonderful as the drink that goes by the name of the drama itself – you guessed it: Berliner Winter. Created by Kreuzberg local Benjamin Fischer during another one of those long winters a couple of years back, it’s still surprising to me how many fellow Berliners don’t know the drink. They should. Everyone should.
Consisting of vodka, a secret mix of spices and apple juice from Streuobstwiesen, traditionally farmed orchards, this liquid treasure should be enjoyed hot (not boiling, you don’t want to lose that Vodka!). It warms up your tired body in a second. Put bluntly, Berliner Winter is the better version of your common Glühwein – a much needed alternative, if you ask me.
Find vendors in Berlin and elsewhere on Berliner Winter’s website.
CHECK OFF ALL THE NOMS
Let’s be real: the long nights of summer are reserved for the beer gardens, green strips by the canals full of trash and dog poo, drinking Radler on tiny balconies and sunset at Tempelhofer Feld. Here’s what this means for winter: we should all get over ourselves, swallow our pride and start using Foursquare (again). All the yums of the city have been neatly collected on lists by people like
PRO TIP: Don’t EVER go home after work, always go straight to dinner. That comfy couch won’t let you go and all that’s gonna get you is an unhappy social life and an empty fridge.
TREAT YOUR BODY
When there’s no time or money to simply flee winter to somewhere warmer – don’t despair, there’s still hope. Think steamy saunas, lounging on a sunny indoor deck by the lake and floating around in pools with underwater music. Take a mini vacay and give your body some attention with a visit to a pretty day spa like Liquidrom, located in the middle of Kreuzberg, or Fontane Therme Neuruppin out in Brandenburg, both working girl friendly with long opening hours. Your body will thank you in the sweetest ways.
PRO TIP: Invest a little money in a big, fluffy bathrobe, then take it to your choice of spa. You won’t regret it, I promise.
GET REAL – GET A JACKET
People keep whining about the cold, the wind, the snow, etc. – which all wouldn’t be a thing to mention if they weren’t all wearing some form of wool coat that would realistically be good for the in-between months of November and the like. Therefore, I would suggest for everyone to get over themselves (yet again) and get a real jacket. I’m talking Woolrich, Canada Goose, … The type of investment piece that you’re gonna be thanking yourself for every single day that’s in minus degrees, or just too windy for anything made from wool.
LEARN TO COOK
Few things are more comforting than making your own comfort food. Preferably in your own steaming hot kitchen, with fogged-up windows and a full glass of red wine in your hand at all times. And isn’t comfort really all we need in winter?
Need cookbook recommendations for the non-pro in the kitchen? How perfect for a blog that’s run by an Australian superwomen: Chef Donna Hay has got you covered with a cookbook for people like us, my current favorite.
PRO TIP: If you’re at the supermarket and feeling unimaginative, take to Pinterest for more input on all things comfort food.