Quiet Industry

11 May, 2018

On returning to Oslo, Berg brought with her knowledge of a new way. “In 2011 I opened a small cocktail bar called Aqua Vitae. Cocktails were niche still but every night I’d try to convince people to try my drinks. They would say: “This is the worst bar I’ve ever been to” and “you are the worst bartender”. But after a while we had a small but fiercely loyal clientele.”

Berg knew exactly who Alex Kratena was when she met him in late 2012 at Tales of The Cocktail. “Our first date was at the Spirited Awards,” she says. “And the rest is history.” Berg then straddled London and Oslo, commuting between the two so she could compete for Norway in World Class.

In winter 2013 she made the move permanent. “I was nervous. I thought I’d have to work in Tesco because no one is going to give me a job.” But Gareth Evans toured her round Poland Street Social and gave her a job on the spot.

Her next big gig was to consult on and establish the drinks programme at Himkok, so Olso came calling once more.

Though Berg’s work with Kratena and Caporale was gaining steam – not least the education programme of P(our) – there is also the small matter of opening a bar. When it happens – hopefully later this year – it will be the biggest launch of the decade. Against her better-known partners, Berg’s work is sometimes under-appreciated. What you see is the tip of the berg – her planning, thoughtfulness and social conscience form the base for everything the trio does.

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