In Berlin more than elsewhere you know it best – the world is your oyster. OY, a new pop-up restaurant which is about to open its doors this week, will make it even more so. Offering a (not so) fine dining experience, OY will be serving 3 types of oysters with small selection of suited beverages to the groovy hip-hop tunes for the next four weeks (hint: have you picked a place for your Valentine’s date yet?). We asked Jenna Biberstein, the founder of OY, a few questions about the concept and the journey to the pop-up dream:
First of all, we would be happy to know more about you – could you please tell us a few words about yourself?
Jenna, 29, born and raised in Zurich, Switzerland.
I am told I am pretty fun to be around. Love to be silly, dance, have great conversations over a glass of wine. I guess i am just a girl with many ideas.
Is OY your first pop-up? How did you come up with the idea? Why did you choose oysters as the main ingredient – rather unusual choice for Berlin?
OY is my first pop-up. I came up with the idea when I was in Lyon a bit over a year ago. I walked into “Les Halles” by Paul Bocuse. It was this amazing hall filled with fish & seafood stalls. People sitting there, ordering their crustaceans, and having wine with them. I then said: THIS WOULD BE SOMETHING FOR BERLIN. The development of OY had to obviously be relevant to Berlin. I couldn’t copy one to one what I had seen in Lyon. So the idea was to take that, and bring the sexy Berlin flair into the picture by adding music and certain, call them “interesting” and “different” ways to actually serve the oysters. I loved the idea of doing it with oysters, because it is such a special product. You either love it or hate. However, the people that love them, really really love them, and therefore really respect this delicacy….as weird as that may sound. They enjoy the look of the oyster, the fresh smell, drizzling a bit of lemon or vinaigrettes onto it just before leaning it into their mouths. Why oysters…..I guess because its still something people can learn about, I think thats what really fascinates me.
Opening party is coming up, Thursday 11.02 is the day. How long did it take you to prepare for this date? Could tell us about some highs and lows you’ve experienced along the way? Do you think opening a pop-up restaurant is something everyone should try once in a lifetime?
All in all, the preparation took about 4-5 months. Obviously the final few weeks being far far more intensive. At the beginning it was all about location scouting, then finding the right suppliers ect ect.
Some highs have been hearing people’s reactions to OY. It’s been really positive which is great. I guess also just seeing the whole thing come together. Building something. A project from start to finish. My vision and concept. I think that has been the ultimate high for me personally. Some lows….having food poisoning from one of the oyster suppliers which we of course didn’t end up choosing. Ended up in hospital for 4 hours. Wasn’t so much fun.
I dont know if I would say the pop-up experience is something everyone should try, but I would say everyone should try full-fill their own dream. If its a pop-up, writing a book, opening a gallery. Find your dream and make it happen. YOLO.
Oyster-connoisseurs must be definitely excited to taste the 3 oyster variations you will be offering. What about oyster-rookies? Do you have a piece of advice for those of your guests who are just about to try oysters for the first time?
For first timers, I would definitely advise to try all 3 oyster types. They are truly very different from one another. We have 2 vinaigrettes to pair with them for those who are a bit nervous about the taste. Of course the simple squeeze of lemon will work too. I think oyster rookies should come to OY and really enjoy the experience of something new.
Last but not least : what does the future hold for OY? Are you planning it as a one time thing, or shall we expect regular oysters & hip-hop celebrations?
Only the future knows what the future holds. I guess the answer to this question has to simply be: Time will tell!