Living the Chefdays of our lives with the help of METRO.
#Bloggerlife certainly has its perks – from the giddy highs of deleting negative comments left by trolls to the swirling lows of reviewing new restaurants, things can be alright. And recently we were invited to spend the day with gastronomic wholesaler METRO, where things went from the unexpected to the sublime. It started (as all good things do) when we were piled into a VIP coach with tinted windows.
METRO is the backbone of Berlin’s food scene.
In the last five years, Berlin’s food scene has gone from shite to alright and is quickly heading towards being not bad. Ingredients-Mecca METRO is largely responsible for facilitating this change, sourcing and promoting new products and produce that have opened Berlin’s kitchens up to a new world of possibilities. Because there’s more to life than kraut.
We were there for a tour of Friedrichshain’s palatial METRO to figure out if we should be recommending you, our beloved readers, to get METRO cards and join the METRO revolution (like all good Berlin clubs, METRO is exclusive – you need a METRO card to shop there, and need to be a business owner to get a card. But… we’re all technically self-employed business owners, aren’t we?). The tour started with coffee in the Profi Lounge, which we’re told is where Berlin’s star chefs often congregate. #Bloggerlife trivia: these events always provide finger food, but no one ever eats it. This day was no different.
‘METRO – it’s like a supermarket but bigger!’ could work as a successful advertising slogan for a chain which operates in a place where your average Aldi stocks a similar range of products as can be found in the dust at the bottom of a handbag, but METRO isn’t just big – it’s massive. And it stocks enough great produce to make anyone half-interested in cooking don a chef’s hat and sharpen their one, blunt Ikea knife.
Some highlights of our tour:
When things go mental.
After an extensive shop tour and some 11am wine (dangerous), we thought it was all over. Then, we were ushered towards that big, black coach.
Minutes later we found ourselves at Chefdays, a two-day gastronomy messe at Arena, seated at the chef’s table in front of a live studio audience, being served a two-course meal by celebrity chef, Christoph Brand.
Hot under the gaze of television cameras, we’re then introduced to food expert after food expert, who are more than happy to let us taste the products they are presenting at Chefdays – products, I might add, which are all readily available at METRO.
Vendors flash bright smiles at us as we pass, explaining in genial German about the origin of the food, the preparation, just how it’s bound to move and shake the food scene, before watching us toss their concoctions down our throats.
One of us is sloshing with the top-tier, two-course meal, the other bobbing around, fizzy with free gin and wine. We’ve entered the Land of Plenty, children, and everything is free. #Bloggerlife trivia: this is the point where normal bloggers go home… but we stick around to make fools of ourselves.
So there we are, watching Blunck‘s thick-bellied chocolatier (would you trust any other kind of chocolatier?) “smoke” a round of gooey chocolate ganache truffles with sandalwood chips in a scene reminiscent of a Ferrero Rocher advert, before passing the tray around.
Soon, it’s cheese-on-stick heaven and taste-testing octopus-ink chips, while making a few too many pass-bys at the macaron table. Then it’s wine, wine, sekt, rosé sekt (have you ever had rosé sekt? Jesus Christ), a sojourn outside to find cigarettes, and then back for six types of craft beer.
The last of the craft beers, hatefully entitled ‘Ronald Dump’, led to this landmark shot, which temporarily silenced Twitter:
So what of METRO?
Forgetting for a minute that we were there to do a job (#Bloggerlife Rule #1), we reflected on all of the awesome things we’d drank and eaten that day.
In a city where it’s easy to get stuck in a falafel-mindset, or lose all inspiration to cook whilst wandering through Lidl, it’s exciting to know that there is somewhere you can go to find exactly what you need, want, never knew you wanted, all under one roof.
Perhaps, with a METRO membership card, every day could be a Chefday.
Article sponsored by METRO.