Coffee culture in Hamburg
Hamburg and coffee go together like Amsterdam and marijuana. Coffee beans have been shipped, stored, and roasted here for hundreds of years. The Hamburg Coffee Exchange, founded in 1887, controlled the world market for a long time and the great coffee dynasties belonging to Jacobs, Darboven, and Tchibo have their homes here. Hamburg has a long and exciting history with coffee, which can be seen in the UNESCO World Heritage Speicherstadt warehouse district. It‘s not just Hamburg‘s coffee tradition that shapes the city‘s cafés. Today, it‘s all about innovation too. Today, there‘s a new burgeoning coffee scene that has nothing to do with the industrially roasted mass-produced coffee from the post-war years. This innovative scene is being led by a colourful group of people who preach craftsmanship and whose respect for speciality coffee is akin to religion.
Hermetic Coffee Roasters – The highest quality coffee in a relaxed atmosphere
The founders of this “cultural coffee place“ hidden in a side street between the Schanzen and Karo quarters come from the literature and art scene. And so, this coffee bar is less a café and more a constantly evolving “project.“ If you‘re not looking for it, you can easily miss it because the thrown-together furniture in front of the door is a bit different from that belonging to the shabby chic American coffee chains. You can only recognise it by the smell of the delicious coffee that you will see in the hands of the relaxed and intellectual crowd of customers sitting inside and out. The baristas here are known for their dedicated preparation of coffee with a Karlovy Vary pot, French press, Kalita, or V60, which is a beautiful ritual that looks as good as the coffee tastes. If you are looking for exquisitely made filter coffee, this is the place to go.
www.hermeticcoffee.com - Sternstrasse 68, 20357 Hamburg (Sternschanze)
Public Coffee Roasters
Whether it‘s filter coffee, a flat white cappuccino, or cold brew you‘re after, the baristas at Public Coffee Roasters are on hand to give you the best advice about which coffee to choose. The result is always a delight. And those who want to learn the art of making coffee can get tips on how to make it properly at home. There are now three cafés in Hamburg: in Wexstrasse in Neustadt, on Brandstwiete opposite Speicherstadt and on Winterhude‘s Goldbekplatz. The beans are roasted on a houseboat in Hamburg harbour and are sold all over the world. Along with espresso and filter coffee, the menu also includes coffee capsules made without plastic and are one hundred percent compostable. The capsules are made of corn starch bioplastic and wood fibres left over from the timber industry in southern Germany. There are three varieties – a fruity coffee made with 100% Arabica beans, an Arabica-Robusta blend with chocolatey notes, and a decaffeinated coffee. George Clooney would undoubtedly feel at home here too.
www.publiccoffeeroasters.com – Brandstwiete 3, 20457 Hamburg (Altstadt)
Wexstrasse 28, 20355 Hamburg (Neustadt)
Goldbekplatz 1, 22303 Hamburg (Winterhude)
Copenhagen Coffee Lab - The chain which isn‘t like a chain
If long queues are anything to go by, then the best coffee and baked goods in Hamburg can be bought at the “Copenhagen Coffee Lab.“ The Danish founders have taken the Hamburg scene by storm and opened three locations quickly. The latest of these is in the famous Rindermarkthalle St. Pauli. The “CCL“ is a chain, but the coffee doesn‘t taste like coffee bought from a chain. All the shops are individually furnished, and the staff change so rarely that they seem like the owners. The cinnamon buns, baked fresh every day in the bakery in Stellingen, enjoy cult status. And that‘s saying something because in Hamburg, the local equivalent, the equally extremely cinnamon-y “Franzbrötchen,“ is a beloved classic. The coffees at CCL are not just for hipster purists - they are fruity, well-round palate pleasers that everyone can enjoy. All the beans come from selected fincas that the in-house roasters have travelled to themselves and farmers that they‘ve developed strong relationships. There are no blends here, only 100% Arabica coffees made with beans roasted gently, slowly, and in small batches. This process eliminates any unpleasant acids and prevents the filter or espresso from becoming too bitter. We recommend dropping by for a cinnamon bun and a flat white.
www.copenhagencoffeelab.com - Rindermarkthalle St. Pauli, Neuer Kamp 31, 20359 Hamburg (Karoviertel)
Camping Coffee - Craft Culture in Perfection
Senad Sarac is known as something of a connoisseur of good taste in the Hamburg craft scene. His breathtakingly restored classic bicycles from the 1930s and 1940s are monuments to the “craft“ concept and are revered and ridden worldwide. Sarac only has to touch something to transform it. And so, his second passion project, the “Camping Coffee“ café in the Kaufmannspassage, is also characterised by his excellent taste and love of details. Inside an almost unbearably beautiful ‚60s camper, his team produces first-class coffee, beautiful waffles, and the thinnest square crêpes in town. You can enjoy your coffee in an airy atrium protected by the Hamburg weather – the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of Hamburg‘s city centre for a delicious moment. The taste profile of the coffees brewed here is more in the Italian tradition, no hipster lightweights from the glass syphon, but nutty powerhouse.
www.levelo-cafe.de - Große Bleichen 36 (in der Kaufmanns Passage), 20354 Hamburg (City centre)
Burg Coffee Museum
The Burg family coffee shop and roasting house in Hamburg‘s Eppendorf district has been around since 1923. Thanks to Jens Burg‘s passion for coffee, this museum has a unique
collection covering all aspects of this fascinating product. It has its residence in Hamburg‘s Speicherstadt warehouse district, of course. This place has a long tradition with coffee because coffee has been stored and processed in the coffee warehouse belonging to Hansen & Studt in the Block R, St. Annenufer warehouses, now called the Genuss Speicher, since 1896. In the only vaulted cellar in the Speicherstadt, hundreds of objects from the Burg Collection create a world where you can learn all about the incredible coffee plant and follow the journey from its cultivation to the Hanseatic trade office and the coffee shop which our grandparents would have visited. The coffee tastings held here are also legendary, or you can enjoy a good, traditionally roasted coffee in the café instead.
www.kaffeemuseum-burg.de – St. Annenufer 2, 20457 Hamburg (Speicherstadt)