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Of an afternoon (or, The charms of an old-school cafe)


You'll note that ruffled newspaper just tucked behind that upholstered chair, and can you imagine the sort of cafe it is now? I've never visited for their cakes, which tend to dryness, nor for their tea, which sits in a hottish glass from which an inevitably damp paper tag dangles. The Buchwald Cafe -- or, more properly, the Konditorei und Cafe G. Buchwald -- is famous for their Baumkuchen, though I don't think much of it.

I go for the wallpaper, those sturdy ugly chairs, that atmosphere exuded by grey-headed pensioners busy over their cake and coffee, and that man in a light corner idling over his newspaper, and the sense that Berlin is still encased in a dreamy, dusty layer.

Yes, what a crank I am! But even I enjoy lazing in their postage-stamp of a garden overlooking a quiet cobbled street and the Spree, and you might like to know about it now that the afternoons are turning light. Thank you to Max and to Bleistifterin who alerted me to the place.

Konditorei und Cafe G. Buchwald
Bartningallee 29, Berlin-Tiergarten (map)
Open M-Sat 9am-6pm, Sundays & Holidays 10am-6pm
Tel. +49 (0)30 - 391 59 31


The decor looks like I would imagine a German grandma's home to look - cozy, and comfortable. I can see why you return dry cake, limp tea bag and all. I'll add it to my waunderings.

Ach... homesickness grabs me!
I MISS that place, "spie├čig" as it is...
And you are right - any of their cakes is better than the Baumkuchen

Fun of a small world! it's Max!
tell him hello if ever you talk to him - it has been quite some time...

Do you ever come back? I can't wait to sit under the trees once their leaves are out in a month or so. I believe Max is living it up in Hong Kong just now but I will pass on your greetings when our paths cross this summer.

Yes I will be back, even if it's only for a day trip or so. You know, I'll try and give you information in advance (if I should manage to plan in advance...) and we can meet at Buchwald's and have a decadent little Kaffeeklatsch under the rosebushes. Your kid should love that too!
And yes please, give Max my best - Hongkong is it? well well well... That one gets around! Anyway -maybe he'll be there too?

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