by Mr. Wonka
Brooklyn, New York
March 8, 2003
Bergwerk is just that kind of place. Set on a quiet street on the outskirts of Mitte, this funky little joint obviously relishes its status as a prime locals hangout. A huge letter "B" hangs from the ceiling in the same fashion that Superman wears the "S" on his chest. The lit candles that adorn the solid wooden tables further bring out the warm, golden color of the walls on the main floor. A rack near the entrance is filled with magazines and newspapers to keep the soloists company, but the mellow crowd on hand when I visited was too wrapped up in conversation to worry about reading. Thick iron pipes protrude from the ceiling, and a couch in the back seating area adds a nice final touch to the homey vibe.
Reputedly DJ’s spin in the cave-like basement of Bergwerk on occasion, but unless they have Warwick Davis as their resident turntablist, I don’t know how they could possibly fit anyone down there. The spiral staircase to the bottom floor empties directly into a fuss ball table, a Monster Mash pinball machine, and a few tables, with little room for anything else. The slow path that pinball is marching towards extinction pains me to think about, so I always make it a point to rock one whenever we cross paths. Alright, pinball is pinball, but some of these newer machines are a little chintzy. This particular one had that angle to it that naturally draws the ball to the middle, and was equipped with the dull rubber arms that only Rainer Wolfcastle could get a good pop out of. Regardless, I got to beat up on Dracula and Frankenstein for a minute, and scored two free games, one of the loveliest features of pinball.
There were four or five beers on tap, reasonably priced at 2,50 Euros a pint. I got the feeling that some serious drinking regularly goes down here, as the bartender automatically started a tab for us, assuming we’d be sticking around for a while. We soaked up the relaxing combination of a few pints and music that ranged from folk to French pop, and then jetted to check out a few bars down the street.
It may not be the best place to shake that booty or to get crazy out on the town, but if you’re in the mood to take it easy (or to shoot some pinball), go ahead and find your way to Bergwerk.
From journal Wait a minute, was I really in Berlin?