The dinner comes to Berlin and takes over an empty power station in Moabit.
Following our amazing day in January driving around one of the coolest cities in Europe and getting to know our new collaborator - Flynn Talbot, the time had come to return to Berlin and see if we could pull off another Xicato Secret Dining Experience.
But a few questions were sitting on the edge of our comfort zone.
Would it work with German designers?
The basic idea was to create a fun night with people in the same industry. We know the UK designers - give them a few beers, nice food and the company of like-minded people and they’re happy. Would the German design community go for it in the same way?
Would they even turn up?
They all seemed incredibly concerned about who else was coming - we had been warned that they didn’t all like each other and might not show up if their arch nemesis was going to be there. We decided to be totally open about who was going so there were no surprises and kept our fingers crossed that we hadn’t committed any socially explosive errors!
Could we even make it work?
The venue had shrunk considerably in our minds and when we got back the sight of this enormous, empty, electrical sub-station filled us with dread - how were we going to make this look remotely acceptable for dinner, never mind impressive!
Would Flynn remember to wake up?
Yes, the biggest question was would our man in Berlin actually remember to meet us this time!
Would Blanch & Shock be able to find any suitable supplies?
It’s one thing sourcing cool ingredients in your own city but in another country, with only a basic grasp of the language - it was a big ask! And, at the last minute, the arrival of the mega oven and the need for three-phase power almost had us in tears!
In the end, the short answer to all of the questions was yes - it worked. They turned up and it looked great. Flynn was there and on fire, and Blanch & Shock played a blinder. Check out their blog for the fun they had shopping in Berlin.
Everyone enjoyed the high pressure NOx-injected mint vodka with raspberry powder and rhubarb juice (and after a couple I was having a great time!). The German designers took the treasure hunt very seriously and outperformed the UK big time (13 out of 14 for Chris Seider and Julia Elhofer).
The dinner went down a storm and we had a great time on our table discussing the benefits of bacon apps on the iPhone and German Electro Techno clubs amongst other random things.
A big thanks needs to go to our man on the ground and collaborator Flynn Talbot - as well as his lighting knowledge and general handiness, he knows all the cool places for street food.
Xicato gave him a space to show off his balls to the German lighting community which were well received and stroked enthusiastically for several hours after the dinner - if you haven’t seen them check them out here.
Thanks also to Sanna FP for coming over to capture the event again - she makes it look amazing.
Finally, extra big thanks to Xicato for giving us the opportunity to have amazing dinners in crazy venues with cool lighting people - this industry is full of interesting, nice and creative people. Respect due.
One of the highlights for us (other than getting through it) was halfway through the dinner Michael Rohde came over to us and said that he was almost a little bit impressed - what more can you ask for?