Schöneberg’s charming Winterfeldtplatz is home to one of Berlin’s best farmers markets…
On most days of the week Schöneberg’s Winterfeldtplatz, named after the Prussian General Hans Karl von Winterfeldt, is a pleasant, leafy square, inhabited mostly by roller-skaters, strolling locals and the occasional knot of tourists.
The majority of the square was destroyed in the war but it still possesses a curious architectural mix, from the 60s-style social housing that runs along one side to distinctive landmarks like the red-brick St. Matthias church, one of the few free-standing Catholic churches in Berlin, and the residential house (and associated buildings) constructed by renowned ‘green’ architect Hinrich Baller.
Every Saturday since 1990, the square has been taken over by market stalls. Initially just a few, but over two decades the number has swelled to over 250, making it one of the largest and most diverse markets in Berlin.
Open from around 7am, the market inevitably begins buzzing around 10am, its aisles increasingly clogged with locals shopping for their weekly meat, fruit and veg; tourists browsing the clothes and food stalls; and hungry types in search of more immediate eats.
Of which there are plenty. One of the great things about Winterfeldtplatz is that it caters for a broad clientele. You can breakfast (or lunch) on two Euro Currywurst and one Euro orange juice; indulge in cheap and tasty crepes and Gözleme; or enjoy the extremely lecker grilled fish treats at the popular Stecklerfisch stall.
Looking for something more exotic? Make your way to the Brazilian Imbiss, which serves up hearty lunch-friendly dishes like feijoada, ximxim de galinha and snacks like pão de queijo (cheese and bread balls).
There’s plenty to taste as you stroll through the stalls too. Despite being best known for its abundance of plants and flowers, which you’ll find in abundance all over the market, the choice of culinary delights is overwhelming.
Home-made Leberkäse, Oma Emma’s fantastic marmalades, La Praline’s Swedish ineffable chocolate, delis selling everything from fresh Italian pasta and yellow tomatoes from Campagna, salami and chorizo specialists… Make sure you don’t miss Burkhard Schaub’s Käsespezialitäten stall, a cheese-lover’s dream that only appears at markets and wine festivals.
The streets around the market are worth exploring too, full of antique dealers, bookshops, whisky shops and cafes. Anyone seeking an extra dose of French deli products or a good noisette should also try the charming L’Epicerie, tucked discreetly away on Frankenstraße (number fifteen).
If you’re not struggling with heavy bags of goodies (unlikely) or if you manage a stroll before shopping, you can also explore some of the history in the area.
On Maassenstraße you’ll find plaques commemorating previous residents like Nobel Literature prize-winning poet and playwright Nelly Sachs (number twelve) and Wilhelm Furtwangler, widely considered to be one of the twentieth Century’s finest symphonic and operatic conductors.
For something a little more family-friendly check out the wonderful Theater am Winterfeldtplatz, (Gleditschstraße 5), which has a café (open from ten on Saturdays) and excellent puppet shows for kids and grown-ups (mostly German with occasional English shows).