tiistai 30. joulukuuta 2008
keskiviikko 24. joulukuuta 2008
A good friend Henni and her boyfriend Jukka also got creative for the festive season and they baked Jolly Dragon ginger bread cookies! I have no idea how they managed to bake such a detailed cookie, but I love it!! Although it felt a pity to eat such a creation.... I couldn't help myself! So I captured it forever on camera and then bit off a piece of the tail. It was delicious!
maanantai 22. joulukuuta 2008
What if it all goes wrong?
I quickly got up and hurried to the café at 8:20 on a Saturday morning. Pity I never manage to get myself up that early when I'd have time to visit the fleamarket.
I was joined by Katja and Sari sometime later and we kept busy, running around like headless chickens and somehow by noon we had everything ready. Katja gave us a quick tutorial on the basics of running a café and soon after the first customers arrived she had to leave us on our own...
The day was great! I was so excited to talk to our customers, answer their questions, to serve them and to hear their reactions and thoughts. Also it was heart warming and so encouraging to have so many friends visit me during the day, thanks for that!
Some friends sit comfortably around the table and me standing awkwardly in this picture taken by Janne Hillervo. Yayz.
During our "Christmas Charm" days some of you took part in our Christmas Flower charity project. It was a great success and we would like to extend an extremely warm thank you to all of you who contributed! So, thank you!!! :)
Katja has already gone to the middle of nowhere somewhere and I will head North tomorrow after work, so the café will be occupied by our little helpers for the next week and from then on we'll work to get everything ready for the new year.. next time we open I will be at the café full-time! Be sure to visit then!
Good night, sleep tight... :)
perjantai 19. joulukuuta 2008
This is Sari, lounging on the bed and wearing one of the PuroPuro hats we have for sale. They're made of 100% recycled materials and can be turned inside out..so really it's like having two hats in one. Nifty ;) They've been cut into a great shape and I really need to pick one out for myself before they're all gone. There are some adorable children's hats as well.
Katja and a customer exploring the goodies. Well, I'd better start heading over to the café now, see you! :)
ps. The glögi (mulled wine) we had yesterday was superb... reminded me of a spicy version of hot apple cider, which I believe is a traditional xmas drink in Canada?
torstai 18. joulukuuta 2008
This evening, as well as tomorrow evening the cafe & shop will be open from 5pm until 9pm and this Saturday we will be open from noon until 9pm. Therefore, this Saturday will be my first full-day spent at the cafe when it's open to customers! I'm happy and I hope that all of you who have been unable to visit us because of our limited opening hours are happy too :)
We want to offer everyone a chance to sit down and relax amidst this last-minute Xmas shopping frenzy. We will be serving Christmas brew, porridge and little treats. Below are a few pictures of some of the items in our shop.
(pictures by Arttu)
The flowers and some of the wreaths are adorned with antique porcelain doll pieces found from the rummages of WWII. The proceeds will be donated to children's charities, so this really is a goodwill present for yourself or a friend.
See you! :)
torstai 11. joulukuuta 2008
"it's beautiful here! I love the colours..and the moss-green wall, who decided on the colours? I ordered a piece blueberry pie with vanilla creme and a milk coffee! I have a nice seat here by the window! There are several other customers here too... I really hope this will become a trend place..! I have a friend whose daughter lives close by, will have to tell her to come by, and also I will...... "
and she kept talking, as mothers do.
It was nice to get a "front seat" experience of hearing a customer's thoughts live from the cafe.
15 office work days left.
keskiviikko 10. joulukuuta 2008
The man behind the chocolate, Petri Sirén of Chocolatier Petri's, has been passionate about chocolate for over two decades and is constantly perfecting his chocolate truffles and pralines, never willing to compromise for second best and always looking for better ingredients.
We were charmed and wooed with numerous different pralines and chocolate truffles as well as thin pieces of chocolate that the final product was made of. The confection that really surprised us was one flavoured with mint. It tasted nothing like the typical mint chocolates we had tasted before. Petri uses fresh mint leaves in his recipe..he boils them with the cream filling.. aah.. mouth watering! :P It was a wonderful evening!
I recommend to try the chocolates yourself. You will not be disappointed. Just drop by the cafe and ask Katja to bring forth our selection (which includes some of these flavours: lavendar & corriander, citrus, raspberry, ginger bread, vanilla, mint...all made with the real stuff, no articial flavours :)
To finish off, I'd like to share with you a little "verbal treat", which a close friend of mine, Dan, wrote sometime back. He was given the challenge to write about chocolate in 120 words or less. I think he did extremely well, what do you think?
Chocolate – The Essence of Life
Darkness and light. Solid and liquid. A source of energy. A romantic gift. A heartfelt apology. A bringer of comfort. An exquisite taste of luxury. A functional fuel on the go. A profusion of textures. A possibly potent aphrodisiac. An evocation of memories.
From the cocoa tree seed. Tropical currency. Millennium thrice old. Hot drink or cold? A chemical release - serotonin is one. Health giving properties - antioxidants full-on. Cherry, chili, cranberry, coconut, coffee… A combination I chose. From the taste on the tongue to the smell up the nose.
It's an Easter egg treat. Christmas coins to eat. Valentine heart to keep. A liquor, deep heat. A hot drink to sleep. Bitter or sweet. Chocolate.
maanantai 8. joulukuuta 2008
I started a café with Katja. The café has now been open for three weeks, yet I have not worked there during official opening hours even for a minute since its opening. Not only is that a little odd, it's also driving me nuts! I work at a HR consultancy company and my contract ends in 20 working days. I have a little post-it next to my screen where I've been counting down the weeks since week number 33 when I had a total of 21 weeks left. It's a Monday morning highlight of mine to cross over a week from the countdown list.
maanantai 1. joulukuuta 2008
Katja was receiving text messages, people were peeking through our windows, knocking on our doors..and whenever we were either carrying furniture in or out..or in again and out again... people would stop us to ask when we were going to open. After a few months of patience, people began to state "you're still not open?"..this was the time I stopped bringing up the café as a topic of conversation with friends... a month or so more and people were begging us to open soon. We really had to remind ourselves what the point of all of this renovation and building was: to open the most wonderful café in Helsinki...and Helsinki had waited long enough! So with several sleepless nights and with an enormous amount of help from friends, we were able to open on Tuesday 18.11.2008 for the first time.
we had some champagne to celebrate the opening of the café and S's birthday
The café has been open now for eight days (yay!!!). So the never-ending renovation project reached a point where we were able to start to serve our wonderful customers - mind you, that does not mean that it has ended. The restroom ceiling structures still need to be built, there's still some paint work to be done, lighting has to be set up above the windows...etc etc etc. All of that will come with time though, now we are directing all of our focus on you! By "you" I'm of course referring to our customers :)
I'm noticing a similar pattern with this blog (though in a microscopic scale!)... I have yet to tell anyone about finally writing the first posts because I want there to be some content here for when the first readers arrive.. but maybe by the next post I'll be brave enough to start passing the link around. Maybe.
I hope to find and share pictures of the renovation process with you. I have none on this computer now, so I'll just have to add them later... I don't need to ask you to be patient, since you're not here yet. Hopefully they'll be up by the time you visit for the first time ;)