This time I had the opportunity to talk to Cyp (Cyprian Iannino) one of the founders of the Green Café and Farm Shop (Grünes Café und Hofladen). I became aware of the project somehow and also supported their Startnext campaign. When Cyp told me that there was a good connection to Markthalle Neun, I immediately knew how. I had read about it in the Markthalle Neun newsletter. By the way, if you also want to support the project, you can find more information below.
Grünes Café – The Creation
Cyp and 6 other people, including Lukas Dehl and his brother – the operators of Britzer Kräuter (Britz Herbs) – had the idea of starting something together. This is how the Grünes Café und Hofladen project came into being in mid-2020.
The location was found via Britz herbs (Britzer Kräuter), which already used the glass houses and the area behind them on Mohriner Allee for growing their herbs. The café and farm shop are in the front part of the building and can therefore be entered directly from the parking lot.
In the meantime, the number of operators has decreased to Cyprian and Lukas. The two are supported by a handful of employees. Cyp, who comes from a family of restaurateurs, bakes cakes, builds furniture and takes care of everything that comes up. But he leaves the computer stuff to Nicole, who takes care of Instagram and the Startnext campaign as well as expanding the range.
The idea behind it
The founders want to promote small, local or regional suppliers and sell their products in the farm shop. Almost everything is organic and is largely made in Berlin. At the moment, they only buy fruit and vegetables mainly from Terra, but most of it comes from the region. We’ll get to the range in a moment.
Cyp told me that they actually had the idea that residents and allotment garden owners from the surrounding area would sell their surplus fruit and vegetables through the farm shop. But that still has to get started. If you have a garden nearby and you can’t use the harvested fruit and vegetables all by yourself, get in touch with the Grünes Café! You can find the contact details at the end of the article. That goes for other things as well. See photo! There it says: “Swap corner in the neighbourhood – For literature, fruit and vegetables from the garden or whatever else you would like to give away and swap.”
The Startnext campaign is for the idea of offering vegetables and fruit for self-harvest in part of the glass houses directly behind the café and farm shop. The plants are already there, but the planters are currently still on the ground. It is now about the construction of the raised beds and the partition walls to the adjoining area of the Britz herbs. The aim is to bring people in the city closer to how their food is grown. Children should see how the plants grow and also experience how nice it is to harvest something. You can find all further information in the Startnext campaign (link in the next paragraph).
Would you like to support the Grünes Café and Farm Shop project?
The Startnext campaign runs until June 30, 2021. From a small donation of 5 euros to your own 50 m² field for a year for 300 euros, there are lots of great thank-you gifts. More on this on the Startnext page.
What do you get in the Grünes Café and farm shop?
Spatially, the café and the farm shop are one. By the way, Fazi is usually behind the counter there. In the café you can get homemade cakes, usually one or two vegan varieties as well. When I visited they had vegan lemon cake. The coffee comes from Vote Coffee Roastery. It is located in Kaffee9 in Markthalle Neun and is run by Philipp Reichel and Laurel Carmichael. You can find out more about this in the blog article about the espresso workshop that I attended with Philipp. Incidentally, a cup of coffee costs 2 euros, a cappuccino 2.50. Teas are available for 1.50 to 2 euros.
In addition to the cakes, which incidentally cost 2 to 3 euros each, there are also two hearty dishes in the café – quiche and wild herb salad for 3 euros each. So everything is moderately priced. Cyp told me that they are generally very focused on their target group and at the same time they bring something completely new to this part of the city.
You may already recognize the bread range on the shelf behind the cake showcase. It comes from Märkisches Landbrot an organic bakery in Demeter quality, which is located in Berlin-Neukölln and is therefore practically around the corner from the Grünes Café.
In the refrigerated display case on the other side of the counter you will find various milk products. On the picture you can see organic fresh milk from Luisenhof Milchmanufaktur based in Velten near Berlin and from the eco-village Brodowin in northern Brandenburg. There is organic cheese from Backensholzer Hof in Schleswig-Holstein, quark and yoghurt from Lobetaler Bio, as well as kefir and cream cheese from Urstrom, a company from Baruth/Mark in Brandenburg that was also founded in 2020. What I find particularly cool – butter is available in one piece and can be bought by the gram. You rarely see that these days.
A large part of the range is made up of fruits and vegetables, as mentioned before. The offer here is mainly regional and seasonal. And soon more products from their own production and from gardens in the surrounding area will be added. Due to the close relationship with Britzer Kräuter, there is of course a large variety of herbs in pots that are grown in the greenhouses on the common area.
In the farm shop you can find pickled vegetables and some types of jams that are not quite commonplace from their own production. For example apricot-thyme or strawberry-marzipan.
There are also various oils in the farm shop – including freshly squeezed linseed oil – and other organic foods such as flour, sugar and salt.
In the Grünes Café and farm shop you will also find a good selection of drinks. Ostmost, based in Berlin-Treptow, is very well known in Berlin with its juices, spritzers and ciders from the orchard. Absolutely new to me were the organic limos from Ände, who bring drinks from all over the world to Berlin-Spandau and Germany to counteract the “wanderthirst”. I was allowed to taste the wonderfully refreshing Green Mandarine Limo during my visit to the Grünes Café. Based in Berlin-Friedrichshain and also a very exciting project is Solidrinks, which was launched to support projects with and for refugees.
Don’t worry, there are a few alcoholic beverages too. There are, for example, the beers fromQuartiermeister, which are already well known in Berlin. Quartiermeister is committed to social projects in the neighborhood. Or the beers from the Potsdam Braumanufaktur brewery that bear the Naturland logo. The Concrete Jungle Gin from the Freytag Liqueurs & Spirits manufactory based in Berlin-Friedrichshain has a few more turns.
Grünes Café and farm shop location and ambience
As already mentioned at the beginning, the café is located in Berlin-Britz not far from the Britzer Gardens. You can find the exact address in the info box and the Google map at the end of the article. There are enough parking spaces right in front of the entrance. But you can also take the 181 bus almost to the door.
Due to the location in a glass house, the ambience is unusual. And as you can see in the previous pictures, a lot of wood is used.
In the outdoor area, Cyp built a lot of seating himself. Most of the building material he looked for on the Internet or obtained it from Markthalle Neun. They were able to win over an artist friend for the beautification. She will gradually decorate the outdoor furniture with ornaments.
You can see a lot of green both inside and outside. In addition to the Britzer herbs, which are currently greening the outdoor area, you will find a fig tree and a number of other plants in the café. As you would expect in a glass house.
The café and farm shop are very far advanced. A great selection of almost exclusively organic products, most of which come from the region. There are already some vegan options in the café and in the farm shop anyway. The entire team is very friendly and committed.
A great project with fruit and vegetables for self-harvest is still running online on Startnext (until June 30th, 2021) and offline right next to the café and the farm shop in the large greenhouses. There is also a lot of work in progress. I’m excited to see how it all turns out. I definitely think it’s a great thing and worth supporting.