due baristi – two are better than one

So, is there a good coffee place in Hamburg???

After having found many great cafés in many cities, finding the perfect place in Hamburg has turned out to be far more difficult than expected. So far, I have lost count of the amount of arguments I have had with café staff on what the difference is between a café latte and a latté macchiato. For those of you who have not heard of what a latte macchiato is, don’t worry, I hadn’t either.

Basically it is a latte, but you pour in the coffee last that makes for a nicely looking coffee. Unfortunately in terms of taste it is not much to rave about. It tastes very milky and the crema does not rise to the top. And then there is the issue with the poorly trained baristas, who tend to to overheat the milk and refuse to understand how it is different to a café latte. So makes for 80% of my café experiences in Hamburg.

But when I thought that all hope was lost of finding a good café along came Due Baristi at Langenfelder Damm 2-4 in Eimsbüttel.

chocolate cake at Due Baristi

Sweet gooey chocolate cake at Due Baristi, Langenfelder Damm 2-4, Eimsbüttel, Hamburg

It’s a quiet residential area with leafy trees and a few small boutiques, close to Osterstraße but tucked away in an unspectacular but cosy corner.

On arrival the café looked promising with its large outdoor seating area packed with people sipping coffee. It also passed my usual first table check: seeing whether everyone had finished their coffee or whether the new coffees looked like something I would like to order.

The name of the place seems to be derived from the fact that there are two baristas preparing the coffe. Two owners it seems, passionate about coffee. But so far, I have not had a chance to speak with them. I will try to find out more about it and let you know in a future post.

Entering the inside was another nice surprise. Marble and wooden tables, the place conveys a light and bright whitish feel without being cold. It’s spacious and inviting with a lot of different seating places, mixed through between small and large tables with plenty of different areas to hide or to prominently place yourself in everyones’s sight. On the wall are a few plaques on display confirming the participation in German barrista competitions suggesting that attention is given to latte art.

You need to place your order at the counter and then all food and drink is brought to your table. In addition to the selection of different coffees, there is also a nice selection of wines, cakes and food. Some nights you can come for a large buffet consisting of what appeared to be home cooked authentic Italian food.

All in all this place feels like it’s run by a nice italian or italian influenced family that simply enjoy good coffee and food. Not much that can go wrong.

So, having ordered a slice of the chocolate cake and a latte with soy milk Luke and I were anticipating whether the coffee would live up to our initial impressions.

Possibly the best coffee in Hamburg…

And it did! So, if anyone is still wondering whether there is good coffee in Hamburg, the answer is: yes! This is the place if you are looking for true attention to detail and good coffee. The coffee is smooth, creamy, good latte art and has nice finish on the pallate.

Due Baristi: Thank you for putting some passion into making your coffee. Thank you for understanding café culture. Thank you for getting it right.

This is hands down my favourite coffee place in Hamburg. Now, it’s over to you: What’s your favourite café? I would love to hear about your favourite coffee places in Germany or other European cities.


 My favourite coffee in Hamburg. Good coffee, nice and bright atmosphere, a great place for a lazy Sunday morning.

a great shot of kaffeine

The great lunch selection at kaffeine, 66 Great Titchfield, London

So here we are on our tour of London. Instead of the usual visiting of sights or shopping tours we decided to visit London the way we usually like to visit cities: one café at a time, trying to find the best coffee in town.

It’s my favourite way of travelling, you end up seeing all the sights but in a fun relaxed way, you get to enjoy great coffee and you usually discover many gorgeous back streets that you will not find in any travel guide. Small cafés are simply at the heart of the culture of any city, or show the lack thereof.

On top of our list was ‘Kaffeine‘ at 66 Great Titchfield. An Australian/New Zealand operated store with (of course) a Synesso coffee machine. So here we were, our second café for the day after having visited ‘flat white‘ and a nice shopping stroll through Soho, London we were ready for the next shot of goodness.

And good it was indeed! A nice bright and friendly place with adequate seating and a large selection of sandwiches and other lunch items that we didn’t try but looked delicious and based on the Londoner queues that started to arrive at lunch time I am guessing we should have had lunch there as well – our seats where sought after by the crowds that arrived for lunch.

Coffee perfection at Kaffeine

The coffee was first class with friendly service, nice latte art – I just finished it too quickly. Really great coffee, their nice interior was a reflection of their attention to detail and passion for great café culture.

You won’t be disappointed by Kaffeine. They understand coffee and café culture. A great place to meet a friend to have a chat over a great cup of coffee or for lunch. High attention is given to the quality of beans, service and food selection. A+++

pasmarose – a day in lüneburg and the next door cafe

All but the weather looked promising for our Saturday afternoon coffee tour of Lüneburg. Qype and foursquare had some suggestions, as did google. Wikipedia told us that Lüneberg has more bars per square metre than any town in Europe other than Madrid and that fortunately, it had survived World War II completely intact.

We started at Anna’s Cafe and while Anna provided tasty cakes and a homely setting for a dreary afternoon, the coffee fell well short of the mark.  Froth full of bubbles, a coffee bowl not filled to the top and watery coffee.

café pasmarose in Lüneburg

Chandler’s Coffee understood the difference between a cafe latte and a cappuccino and served up espresso made from 100% Arabica seeds. Again however, I was somehow disappointed.  For my taste, the coffee was too bitter and the decor too Starkbucks. As I suspected on arrival, the smallish one-barista-only Elektra machine could not produce the goods.

We then made our way to Pasmarose. A bit out of the way, unless of course you have planned a Saturday afternoon trip to the Salzmuseum which lies directly at the cafe’s rear.  The decor and the layout were inviting. White and black tiles, sturdy tables and coffee and many other coffee accessories to purchase on display from A. Nannini, Beneficio, Santa Rosa and Varesina. Interesting inoffensive music to keep you relaxed.

The menu differentiated between filter coffee, espresso and espresso mit milch (with milk).  Under the ‘espresso mit milch’ section we were given the choice of ordering an espresso macchiato, a pingo, a cappuccino, cappuccino doppio, grosser cappuccino, flat white or latte macchiato.

nice latte art at café pasmarose

Here again we see another example of confusion over the flat white reigning in Europe.  While in Berlin we saw it described as a ‘small Australian coffee’, at Pasmarose it is bylined with the words ‘große tasse sanfter cappuccino.’ Hmmm… In any case, I ordered one and it came with minimal froth as hoped for.

The coffee turned to be gentle and buttery in taste.  Attention was paid to latte art and the service was very good.  The owners appear to be very customer conscious, and were seen lighting candles on tables, offering free slices of strawberry cake whilst being careful not to get in your way.  Happy to have a chat about the coffee also, if you are up for it.


As Julia commented, we would be happy if this café opened up next door to our apartment!

elbgold – something to dream about?

elbgold, sternschanze in hamburg

A café built just for me! All serious coffee drinkers dream about it. Friendly, helpful  staff, owners anxious about their coffee choices  and lots of space – well at least that’s what I dream about, whenever I go out for coffee.

But alas, now I live in Hamburg and finding a place that meets my criteria for coffee success is not as easy as you would think.

La Cafetteria in Eppendorf has failed me time and time again on the service front. As my wife blogged about in her last post, Mikkels, as welcoming as it is, just doesn’t have the equipment necessary to prepare the ultimate brew. And coffee close to Jungfernstieg! Don´t talk to me about coffee close to Jungfernstieg! Our web research promised a café with the highest quality coffee but delivered only a subway sandwich shop at the most highly billed location.

hmm... how do you drink that?

But today I am happy, as I sit here in Elbgold, the first Hamburgian café that just may have the chops to compete with the best, perhaps even the best in my beloved hometown Melbourne.

The staff as soon as you enter the door, greet you with a friendly hallo. If you have questions they are willing to guide you through the 15 available single-origin filter roasts, all made from 100 Arabica beans. The choice of espresso however is limited to two elbgold house blends, one made from Latin American Arabica beans, the other a blend of various African Arabica beans.

Today I felt like a strong brew so Julian my waiter recommended the Columbian roast. Unfortunately, as I get more and more ambitious with my ability to speak German, this sometimes translates into confusion about what I actually want. So instead of getting a creamy café latte I ended up with filter coffee.

In any event, the coffee did not disappoint. The filter coffee was adequate though I do not pretend to be as well versed in the nuances of the filtered types as I am in the subtleties of espresso.

a real latte in hamburg...

For my second choice I clarified that I wanted a café latte and would prefer the stronger Africana brew. On previous occasions I had tested the Classico (the Latin American blend). It is creamy, round and light. The African blend is indeed stronger, but still maintains the creaminess and smoothness of the Classico.

Of course, there are also options for lunch and on a warm afternoon I could see myself spending quite a bit of time here in open outdoor space. It’s a nice mix of guests too. Neither laptops, nor mothers, nor the elderly, nor young professionals dominate.  There is space and a place for all.

Potentially one of Hamburg`s finest!


Quality coffee with the potential to compete with the best.  If filter coffee and 100% Arabica beans are your thing than elbgold is definitely for you.