When it comes to original, unique and sometimes even quirky experiences, Berlin never seems to disappoint. From the overabundance of graffiti and street art to the eccentric club scene there is definitely a certain grungy charm to this city. And the food and drink scene is no exception.

While studying abroad in Berlin, I have gotten a first-hand look at the whole range of food and drink experiences offered. Some of them may seem borderline insane but most of them are just plain delicious. Here is a list of the 11 experiences you must have in Berlin in order to have the right the say “Ich bin ein Berliner.”

1. Doing a beer tasting or take a brewery tour.

coffee, tea, chocolate
Gabrielle Hedges

If there’s one thing Germans do right it’s beer. Beer is such an important part of German culture that not drinking beer while in Berlin is just about the worst thing you could do. And what better way to experience the incredible beer the city has to offer than to do a beer tasting or a brewery tour?

Whether you want to try traditional German beer or small-batch craft beers, Berlin has something for you. I promise you won’t be disappointed by any of them.  

2. Eating in a (completely) dark restaurant.

They say you eat with your eyes right? Well, the two pitch black restaurants in Berlin would have to disagree.

At Nocti Vagus and Unsicht-Bar Berlin you are served a meal and you must eat said meal in complete darkness. No source of light whatsoever.

3. Attend street food festivals.

egg, scrambled
Gabrielle Hedges

Okay, so street food may not be unique to Berlin, but they certainly have made it an institution all it’s own. Seemingly every week there is a different street food festival to attend in a different part of the city.

Markthalle Neun also hosts Street Food Thursday each week featuring both old and new vendors, so you’ll never get bored (or go hungry).

4. Try currywurst.

french fries, ketchup, mayonnaise
Gabrielle Hedges

It’s no secret that sausage is a staple in the German diet. But leave it to Berliners to come up with a completely out-of-the-box dish like currywurst. People either love or hate this sausage dish drowned in curry-flavored ketchup. I’ll let you form your own opinion though.

Hey, if you don’t like it then at least you can eat the fries that it usually comes with.

5. Attempt to finish a whole Wiener Schnitzel.

egg, pork
Gabrielle Hedges

When you order a wiener Schnitzel from any German restaurant you best be real hungry. More often than not the Schnitzel will be larger than your face, maybe even two of your faces. I dare you to try and finish a whole Schnitzel in one sitting.

6. Eating ice cream from Anna Durkes.

ice cream, ice, cream, waffle, chocolate
Gabrielle Hedges

Touted as one of the best ice cream parlors in the world according to The Telegraph, this is one stop you cannot skip on your visit to Berlin.

This quaint and charming shop serves up some of the creamiest ice cream I have ever had and offers bold flavors, too. Since everything tastes incredible I’ll make your decision easy and suggest you get the Anna Durkes special flavor. Just trust me.

7. Feel overwhelmed by the chocolate selection at Fassbender & Rausch.

Gabrielle Hedges

What are they selling? CHOCOLATE.  And a lot of it, too. Home to the world's longest truffle counter, Fassbender & Rausch has more varieties of chocolate, truffles and sugary confections than you could ever dream of. Not to mention the life-sized sculptures made entirely from chocolate that are located throughout the store. The smell alone is enough to make you want to drink from the chocolate volcano.  

8. Try to flag down a server when you’re finished eating.

Gabrielle Hedges

In the U.S., turning tables is the name of the game in the restaurant industry. If you aren’t finished in an hour and a half on a busy evening then the restaurant will not hesitate to kick you out.

In Berlin, and most of Europe for that matter, long (read: dragged out) meals are common. People like to linger and enjoy their food for longer. So if you’re ever at a restaurant in Berlin, make sure you aren’t in a rush to be anywhere. And enjoy the slower pace of life.

9. Wait an hour in line for the best Döner in the city.

True, you can find Döner Kebap on just about every street corner in Berlin. But you would be a fool to skip Mustafa’s Gemuse Kebap. Home to the best Döner in the city, Mustafa’s attracts long lines at all hours of the day.

Trust me, once you wait in line for an hour and a half (guilty) for a beloved Mustafa’s Döner dripping with all the fix-ins, you’ll understand why the tiny stand is so popular.

10. Try to eat a Döner while walking.

tacos, chicken
Gabrielle Hedges

For being a “fast food” in Berlin, Döner is quite a hassle to eat. The sheer size of it makes you think you’ll need a fork, a knife, a bib and 30 wipes in order to dig into it. But trust me, walking around with sauce coating your face and clothes with a trail of fix-ins behind you is the proper way to consume a Döner Kebab.

11. Drink a beer on the U-Bahn.

Technically, this isn’t allowed and there are even signs in the U-Bahn (Berlin’s subway system) that explicitly state that. But true Berliners won’t think twice about cracking a cold one on their commute home from work. If you want to fit in I suggest you do the same. Plus, it makes public transportation a hell of a lot more amusing.

12. Walk down the street while drinking a beer.

beer, ale, tea
Gabrielle Hedges

Perhaps my favorite drinking experience in Berlin is the sheer freedom of sipping (or chugging) a beer while strolling down the sidewalk. No time to pregame? No problem, take some booze with you. Not done with your beer and your friends are leaving the bar? Take the bottle for the road. Hooray for no open container laws in Germany.

What are you waiting for? Go and book your flight to Berlin now.