When East and West Berlin reunited in 1990, the pendulum marking the center of gay life in the city swung to the ex-Communist East and has stayed put ever since. Now that the bourgeoisie has definitively slain the last ghosts of socialism, the once-shabby chic, barely legal cafes and shops of Prenzlauer Berg and Mitte are one by one turning all sleek and image-conscious. Fret not, though-bears, cubs, Kraut-rockers, and skinny boys in skinny pants all get a seat at the bar in what is still the slacker capital of Europe. ILYA MARRITZ
GERMAN PICKUP LINES
Du bist geil.
You are sexy.
Kommst du mit mir zu meinem Hotel?
Will you come with me to my hotel?
Mag dieser Tuchgeruch Chloroform zu dir?
Does this rag smell like chloroform to you?
Trägst du Weltraumhosen? Dein Arsch is nicht von dieser Welt!
Are those space pants? Because your ass is out of this world!
Ich bin in der Stadt neu. Wie komme ich zu deinem Haus?
I'm new in town. Can I have directions to your house?
Get your lactose and carb fix in the heart of the gallery district while watching skater boys dip and pirouette in the park across the street. Delicious shakes and sandwiches too.
Neue Schonhauser Strasse 9
The joe is so beside the point at this see-and-be-seen cafe, with dozens of outdoor tables, in the heart of the Mitte shopping district. Bring your shades-if it's out at all, the sun always shines on Caras.
Alte Schonhaüser Strasse 28
Not a millinery, as the name might suggest, but a sumptuous white-tablecloth and gold-leaf locale that is a favorite with Berlin's airkissing crowd. Impressive menu of aperitifs and digestifs.
Traditional German, without all the oompah music and beer-soaked moustaches. Menu changes daily. Gorgeous old wooden interior makes you want to linger over that schweinebraten.
Club Culture Houze
62 Duke St., 151-709-6508
You will need to remove some-or all-of your clothes to get into one of this bar's rollicking theme nights. Get over yourself, sweetie-everyone looks better under a red light bulb.
For well over a decade, the friendliest, nuttiest gay bar in town. …