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Michelberger Coconut Water @ brünch

There are quite a few coconut water brands out there these days and I think I have had most of them.

Coconut water isn’t a drink for everyone and it took me a while until I actually started to like it. I stuck with it at first because someone told me coconut water was really good for you so I gave it another go. Glad I did, because now I love it.

Coconut water is hydrating, refreshing, low in calories, naturally fat-and cholesterol free and provides a good nutritional boost. It is also quite filling – perfect as a small afternoon ‘snack’. Apparently, it’s also a little wonder cure for hangovers 😉

So when I held my Berlin brünch event at Jaguar Shoes in Shoreditch in March, I was introduced to this cheeky little monkey.

 

I got immediately drawn to its playful design and the taste is great!

I got really excited! Not only was ‘The Fountain Of Youth’ from my home city but also from one of my favourite hotels in Berlin – the Michelberger Hotel

 

If you have ever been to Berlin before, you might know the Michelberger Hotel. I’d say it is a one-of-a-kind hotel experience, in the centre of Berlin, Friedrichshain. The hotel is independently owned and operated and was designed by Berliner Werner Aisslinger. He wanted it to feel like staying at a friends house.

Those who know me, will know that my background is hotels and I have always been very interested in hotel architecture and design. And this one is really special. The hotel is housed in a converted factory building featuring a brick facade, high ceilings, large windows and a courtyard that acts as the social hub of the hotel.

The hotel interior uses objects sourced from local flea markets, often re-purposing them for other uses, and low-cost materials such as laminated larch. Every element of the hotel has either been custom designed and built, or selected specifically for it from furniture to hand-lettered stickers on the water bottles. The attention to detail is impressive.

 

And not only that! The best part is that the hotel has decided to throw out all big brands and faceless products in favour of a selection of crafted products from independent, family-run enterprises from near by and far away. Similar to brünch, suppliers have been chosen for their excellent quality and for the great people behind them; people who craft their products instead of companies who craft their brands.

Long story short, you can imagine it didn’t take me long until I was on the phone with those guys. I am really proud to be offering this amazing coconut water at my Berlin brünches from now on and excited to work with such great people, that share the same passion for quality and working with smaller independent brands and producers. 

More about The Fountain of Youth

How come The Michelberger came up with their own coconut water?

The story goes… ‘Whilst lazing around on the beach on holiday, someone gave us a young green coconut with a straw poking out. We fell in love and decided to bring that drink back to our bar in Berlin. So started a long journey until we found exactly what we were looking for: the most wonderful people farming the very best coconuts and finally we had found something so fresh and delicious that it felt exactly like that very first drink on that beach. In fact it felt so good we decided to call it the Fountain of Youth’

But what is The Fountain of Youth?

The Fountain Of Youth is 100% natural coconut water, with absolutely nothing added. The guys work with a collective of small farmers from a region in Thailand famed for the natural sweetness and delicate flavour of its coconuts.

And as with their hotel, every step of the process, from palm to can in hand, has been done with lots of care and in house. It’s a truly small-scale, local production.

How is it made? 

Directly after being harvested, the young coconuts are brought into the cooperative from the surrounding palm groves by the farmers who gathered them. Within hours of picking, each coconut is inspected and the husk is cut away and the top of the coconut is opened by hand, one at a time. Their precious water is then collected to be taste-tested, filtered and immediately placed into the cans and sealed. From here they are lightly heat-pasteurized with the whole process from the collection of the coconut water to the sealed can ready to be boxed up, lasting only a few hours so the water arrives here as fresh as possible.

The farmers nurture their palms in a clean, natural and traditional way, much as they have always done and the collective has taken the conscious decision not to apply for organic certification. Palms are by nature extremely hardy and pest-resistant and since they have always farmed cleanly and naturally. The Fountain Of Youth’ does not source globally and their cans are filled directly at the plantation from just opened coconuts to ensure purity and authenticity of the product.

 

palm trees

Nutrition facts (per 100ml) / Energy: 85kJ (20Kcal) / Protein: 0.1g / Carbohydrate: 4.8g, of which sugars*: 4.8g / Fibre: <0.1g / Fat: <0.1g, of which saturates: <0.1g / Salt: <0.021g. *natural, from the fruit

Three Berlin Brunch Pop Ups Later – A Small Update

Oh wow. Time flies. Apologies for the radio silence – it’s been quite manic over the past few weeks.

I am now in the South of France enjoying some down time while working on new exciting ideas for brünch. What better place to get a creative and hatch plans.

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Since my last post, I have hosted three pop up events – in Battersea at The Doodle Bar, in my beloved Brixton at Brixton East 1871 and finally in Hackney at Stage 3. How did I manage that?!?!

I can tell you it was a proper roller coaster! Haha Not all went according to plan but what does anyway? But then seeing it all come together on the day and my guests having a great time is such an amazing reward and reminds me why I have decided to do this.

As you know, I want to introduce you to new quirky places that remind a bit of Berlin – hidden gems in buzzing communities that tell their own story. The Doodle Bar is definitely one of those. I love the half warehouse half bar style, the outside ‘Beach area’, ping pong tables in the ‘Yard’ and the massive Doodle chalk wall, which became a piece of brünch art by the end of my pop up there on 29th March.

The Doodle Bar and my friends who helped me out that day were amazing and made this a special one to remember. People kept on dropping in until we ended up being about 50 people in total. Amazing. Guests included Spooncereals, the GrubClub, The Brick BoxSnactThe Social PantryCulinary Canvas and more fabulous people.

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A week later – Easter was around the corner and I decided to host a Berlin Easter Brunch. I am a big fan of Easter. It is a beautiful time of the year and the Easter Brunch in Berlin is kind of a big deal. So I returned to my beloved Brixton to take over Brixton East 1871, one of my favourite venues in the area – chunky wooden beams, exposed brick work, large glazed windows, a massive and old clock on the side of the loft-like space, staircases up to a little cute terrace, wooden floors and above all, a story to tell.

Both events at The Doodle Bar and Brixton East sold out completely and were lots of fun. But I tell you, it was a lot of preparation in the run up. There was not much time in between the two events, neither did the venues have a kitchen nor crockery nor cutlery.

So I borrowed knives, forks and spoons from the Impact Hub Brixton, where I am a member. For my Berlin Easter Brunch in Brixton I ran the bar for the first time myself, well my lovely friends Jo and Ash did. I bought cocktail glasses, I borrowed wine and water glasses from the South London Women Artists and Volcano Coffee Works, a small batch local coffee roaster in West Norwood, supplied the coffee and helped me out with all the coffee gear including cups and saucers. What would I have done without them?

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One of the things I love most about what I do is the people I meet along the way and what I learn from the pros. I went to Volcano Coffee Works a few times before the event and I learnt heaps about coffee. They introduced me to art of coffee making and roasting, brewing and cupping. It is super interesting and oh that smell of fresh ground coffee in their roastery is just the best.

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Last but not least – two days before I left to France, brünch ventured north of the River for the very first time to take centre stage at Stage 3 in Hackney, at the ground floor of the Hackney Empire. The roller coaster started right there. My housemate’s car, which I usually use to transport my pop up from A to B was not available, my friend’s van, who offered to help me instead, broke down the day before my event and I realised two days prior that it was the Virgin London Marathon that Sunday, which meant I could not drive from South to North between 9am and 7pm. Surprisingly I kept my calm. Lol Since I left my corporate job I have become quite relaxed about stuff – I think I have gotten the hang of this entrepreneurism (is this a word?). Things simply don’t always go according to plan and you know what…that’s ok!

So I called around starting with friends via FB, I even called my plumber for help. In the end, the boyfriend of my friend drove me across town, the car filled up to the top, at 7pm on a Saturday evening to offload my gear for the next morning. What a trooper. All worked out well and we had a Happy Ending 🙂

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For more pictures, check out my Gallery and visit me on TwitterFacebook or Instagram.

For my next event on 4th of June I have teamed up with the Streatham Food Festival to bring you a German-inspired Summer Feast in the heart of Streatham @BoyceDaRocca. Get your ticket here.

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