Coffee – in that little cup of pure magic that we drink every morning lies an in depth and complex history that many have yet to fully discover. Considering how large scale coffee is consumed across the world it’s interesting how few truly understand its complexities.
TEXT: THE FRANKFURT EDIT
For example, do you know your light roast (taste bright and fruity) from your dark roasts (taste deep and dark). And, your Arabica from your Robusta? Yeah we didn’t either initially! We have, however, made it our business to find out! Why you might ask? So we can break down some of the coolest spots in Frankfurt to find the best cuppa java! To keep things even more interesting we are taking you on a journey through Frankfurt and walking you through some of its best loved neighbourhoods!
Like the spice route was a voyage of discovery (ok ok slightly more harrowing then the one we are about to send you on) so the The Frankfurt Edit Coffee Route is a voyage of discovery of not only uncharted territory but SUBLIME coffee.
Frida’s Cafe – Bockenheim
We begin in the North, in a part of the city where stories are important and the people within them to be cherished! Make your way to Leipzig Straße to a cafe with a Mexican heroine (Frida Kahlo) as it’s muse.
Frida’s is run by brothers Cagdas and Yoldas Telli. The brothers were born and raised in Bockenheim and the pull of its streets is evident, with it being their place of choice to set up shop. Their father owned a restaurant for many years almost diagonally across from where Frida’s has her roots firmly set! The brothers’ mission? To create a great place for body, soul and encounters!
Various blends and origins make up the coffees they serve. But in essence, they love coffee and are always curious to find new varieties. In winter if the coffee isn’t enough to warm you up perhaps ask for a dash of something stronger, something that makes its way all the way down to your toes!
roasting preference: ‘Ideally lighter roasts but lately there have been some roasters that were able to roast specialty coffees a little darker than average without the coffee losing its complexity.’
speciality: ‘diversity. Our guests, our team, our drinks, our food. They all compliment each other.’
The richness of Bockenheim and its culture will become evident as you walk the streets. Now, make your way down Leipziger Straße and you will notice Bockenheim is a treasure troth of hidden court yards, street art and unexpected gems. In particular, Stern, an independent coffee roaster dating back generations is housed in one of these court yards. Be sure to pick up one of their tasting packs which consists of 5 different varieties and roasts for you to try at home and find your favourite.
Look out for: Bockenheimer Warte-U-Bahn exploding from the earth below
Walking time: 20 minutes
Vif – Westend
Make your way down into beautiful Westend and tucked away on Mendelssohnstraße you’ll find Vif. Vif is an intimate cafe with just enough room to swing your cat. During the summer months the deck outside is superb and the perfect place to get away from it all, read a book, ponder your thoughts and allow the sun to warm your face!
Owned and run by Luise Höpfner, her warmth and openness comes through in every aspect of her cafe! Now whilst Vif serves up a mean cup of coffee we must confess we include them for the incredibly wholesome lunch spread and delicious food they put up each day!
Café and Coffee Notes:
speciality: Wholesome, vegetarian dishes (seasonal and organic wherever possible).
Choose a slice of quiche and 2 side salads for a very generous plate of pure unadulterated homemade deliciousness.
Nächste up: bohnerie in Nordend
Walking time: 20 mins
bohnerie – Nordend
We head slightly south East now for coffee so good you practically smell it before you see it. It is here in Nordend that you find bohnerie. Bohnerie is run and owned by a powerhouse couple, Rawa and Lisa!
Rawa roasts his own beans and adds in a little something special, ‘passion’ making his brew all the more intoxicating (just see his quote below on roasting preference!). Some days we want to just sit and smell the aroma wafting off the magic little cup of liquid caffeine. The cafe is always about experimenting and pushing boundaries when it comes to their coffee, why stand still when you can taste the world? With this in mind the current ‘Flavour of the month’ has hints of aniseed without it being bitter in the slightest.
beans: Generally they rotate 8-9 single origin coffees in a season from lands like Ethiopia, Brazil, Costa Rica and El Salvador just to name a few.
roasting preference: ‘roasting coffee is a kind of balancing act: it’s an art that exists somewhere between science and sorcery.’
speciality: ‘Rawa Speziale’ trust us when we say ‘try it!’
other: Rawa does all his own roasting and his quote above on roasting preference gives you everything you need to know.
No tour of Frankfurt is complete without a visit to Römer, the cultural epicentre of the city. From the timber framed houses to the sheer number of museums you have at your finger tips. We make two stops here.
Walking time: 15 mins
Espresso Espresso – Altstadt
You might as well be standing in a quarter of Italy, in an old school espresso bar. Espresso Espresso are not trying to run along with the ‘3rd Wave Coffee’ pack in Frankfurt they are in fact forging their own path. Along with the coffee they serve aperitifs is high up on the agenda. Savour your espresso or crack open a bottle of Italian Bubbly either way you’re welcome here.
beans: 60% South American Arabica and 40% Indian Robusta
roast: classic espresso roast
speciality: Aperitif (current focus on natural wines)
Now we suggest heading down to the river to The Holy Cross Brewing Society.
Walking time: 6 mins
The Holy Cross Brewing Society – Altstadt
For our little coffee rendezvous we head round the corner onto Fahrgasse where you’ll find the Holy Cross brewing society. This place is such a gem with it’s minimal interior, delicious flat white and of course clientele that are just as cool as the coffee shop itself. We know because this is where the two of us (Janice and Kelly) met for the first time. So this place in particular, holds a big place in our hearts.
beans and roasting: Machhörndl of Nuremberg, Mahlefitz of Munich, Square Mile Coffee Roasters of London, Hoppenworth & Ploch, Backyard Coffee, and The Barn of Berlin
If you need a little bit of a break before your next caffeine fix may we suggest a little retail therapy at Maria Frankfurt. Just two minutes away and diagonally across the street. After you’ve spent your life saving at Maria’s make your way across the river to boho Sachsenhausen. Stroll along the river and the Museumsufer towards the right, Oppenheimer Straße.
Look out for: the neo-Gothic style Eiserner Steg (bridge) and be sure to look back over the river to admire the famous Frankfurt skyline.
Walking time: 18 mins
Oheim – Sachsenhausen
Way before all the cool kids were doing it and before the coffee culture began to take off in Frankfurt, Julia and Christian had a vision. And yes you guessed it, oheim is that vision! A coffee shop and concept store with heart, plenty of soul and great coffee of course .
oheim is beautifully ‘unassuming’ from the outside and gloriously quaint on the inside. That is to say, no pretences, just a desire to create an environment that makes you feel part of the family whilst delivering mind blowingly good coffee! For example the devil is all in the detail, from the Ethiopian beans they source right down to all the cakes being prepared in house (organic wherever possible). Also, you will always find Julia and Christian on site.
beans: houseroast – a single estate coming from Papua New Guinea. Meisterschaftskaffee – a natural bean from Ethiopia with notes of quince, rose hip and wild berries (as the coffee cools the flavour changes absolutely amazing!)
roasting preference: Omni roast which embraces the idea that any coffee can be brewed using any method. They develop the roasting profile for the oheim beans together with their roasting team of backyard coffee. In essence this means leaving the Barista to work his magic without having to continually change up the roast dependent on the order i.e. espresso or cappuccino.
Now we take you over the river again into Ostend. Up next Aniis: Raum für Kaffeekultur.
Walking time: 33 mins
Aniis – Ostend
Ok. So you may be ready for a drink after all this coffee, but don’t you worry we’ll guide you to a drink along the river right after you’ve tried our last coffee paradise, Aniis – Raum Für Kaffeekultur. Located in Ostend just across the way from the famous ECB (European Central Bank), you’ll find this very stylish cafe which combines flavours from Morocco with exceptional coffee, speciality cakes and a super friendly staff. Owner Rachid El Ofairi named his cafe Aniis after a Moroccan phrase meaning Good Friend. In the winter months you may find it hard to find a free space as it’s so popular, but in the summer it’s the perfect spot to enjoy a bit of fresh air and delicious coffee.
beans: Johannes Bayer and Backyard Coffee
speciality: they have a mean Chai Latte
While you’re in the area check out Oständ, a local independent boutique full of independent labels. Literally just around the corner.
Now that you’ve had enough coffee to last you a week, we suggest heading down to the river and grabbing a drink at Oosten. They have a wonderful outside area and a beautiful view of the river Main.
Walking time: 7 mins
Note: This coffee route is tried and tested. We walked the whole route and used google maps as a guide for our timings and we have to say it was pretty right on. However, our intention is for it to leisurely stroll to enjoy the coffee and take in the sites of Frankfurt! So, be flexible with your timings. And most importantly: enjoy!!
More english Blogposts? Here we go.