Truffle Pig – Hidden in Plain Sight
Lately, I noticed that we have many skilled bartenders in Berlin. There are places where you can get great drinks just like in London or Paris. I love locations that need to be explored and have an intimate atmosphere. My favourite bar concept has its focus on guests. Join me on a sip to Neukölln.
Truffle Pig is a cocktail bar hidden in the back room of the neighbourhood Kneipe (local pub) Kauz & Kiebitz. You just have to follow the pig tracks through Kauz & Kiebitz and ring the bell. Sounds simple? It requires a bit of courage to ring the bell because you wouldn’t dare press a button like this without a very special reason.
Truffle Pig, some call it a Speakeasy. What awaits you is a hideaway for sophisticated drinkers.
As soon as you are in you are rewarded by a flamboyant atmosphere. The guests are mainly cocktail connoisseurs and the vibe is jovial. You are surrounded by dark colours, beautiful lighting and cosy seating areas. A delightful selection of spirits is nicely staged on the backbar. Good news for Berlin, it is a non-smoking place, but don’t worry if you are a smoker, they have a smoking room. The bar is open from Wednesday to Saturday starting at 8 pm and I warmly recommend a visit. If it is packed, you can enjoy a beer at the bar counter of Kauz & Kiebitz—on tap or selected bottles. On Fridays, Fish & Chips is served and every Tuesday the kitchen is taken over by street food chefs. Down to earth and rock-solid quality. This place is worth a visit in itself.
Sven Lukas is one of the brains and the owner of the whole venue. He is also one of those skilled bartenders who do not make a fuss about themselves. Learning from the best, he has worked in Paris at Dirty Dick and was part of the opening team with Scotty Schuder. I like his calm and humble attitude, the right mix of host and owner, friend and bartender.
Into the woods is the name of the menu, complete with drinks inspired by nature and the creatures which live hidden in mysterious dark places. The Menu comes in Instagram format, which is a very good idea, with beautiful pictures underlining the gloomy atmosphere. It is easy to understand the flavour profile of the drinks when using the aroma wheel.
There will soon be a new menu, but I hope their signature drink Truffle Pig will stay. It is a play on a Margarita combining Tequila, beetroot shrub, white truffle and rimmed with Sel de Gusano. The lovely drink Butterfly caressed my tongue too—an unexpected yet very tasty composition of Dild Akvavit, strawberry, lemon, vinegar and malic acid. High amplitude on fruity, sour and polarizing says the aroma wheel. Next time I’m going to have a tikilicious Black Squirrel, a twist on the Polynesian Remedy cocktail with Blend of rums, Islay Whisky, lemon, hazelnut orgeat, honey and ginger syrup. Actually, I don’t like to share these insider tips that much, but the drinks are really fantastic and show what Berlin has to offer alongside the top-notch classic bars. Truffle Pig showcases classically inspired innovative cocktails. Their focus is on balance and pinpointing the spirits in the drink. All the drinks I have had so far have been harmoniously matched.
For anyone who wants to learn how to make their own drinks, Cocktail Workshops are held at the Truffle Pig, as well as at other locations. Attend one of the Shake Nights and learn the art of cocktails.