The Organic Boho
by Reza Cristián
When you first step foot into The Organic Boho, you feel as though you have instantly stepped onto a white sand beach in Southern California. You see succulents on the table, colorful throw pillows on the chairs, a huge mural of street art to your left and the smell of smoothies in the air. Except you aren’t in California—you are instead inside a completely organic and plant-based restaurant in the heart of Copenhagen, Denmark.
Karina Nayja Bruun founded Organic Boho with her sister Maria Bruun in Ibiza, Spain four years ago as just a place for kids and tourists to take cooking classes and create a community atmosphere. This was the very beginning of the “whole raw food era,” as she put it.
“We got this amazing open kitchen in a big organic certified farm,” she said.
From there they would cater for the eight months out of the year they were in season, due to the weather. But that wasn’t enough for Karina; she saw that there was a market for this. “I wanted to take the brand to a whole new level; that’s why we took it back to Copenhagen.”
The two of them had no background in the food industry, Karina, originally from the fashion industry, and her sister Maria, a fitness trainer always shared a passion for food, and always enjoyed it.
The two sisters were born in Denmark, and after struggling with their kitchen in Ibiza, they decided to take their new profound love back to their home city. From there, they would participate in festivals before opening up a tangible storefront.
Where there seems to be a bigger demand for organic foods back in the states, thanks to Whole Foods, where it originally started, Karina saw that the fast-growing market for locally sourced restaurants was growing in Denmark.
With much success under their belt, The Organic Boho has recently been been nominated for the best vegan restaurant by AOK, a huge Denmark newspaper. This is the first “vegan” category, so they are super thrilled and will find out the results June 9.
Her main goal that she tries to maintain is to source locally as possible and to buy Fair Trade. “Getting the organic is not the only way to be sustainable.”
“We also want to be sustainable in a financial way and social way, so that way we can make an impact.”
For Karina, being organic and plant-based is not just about being healthy, but it’s an epitome of a lifestyle.
“I felt that there was a need to create a food, lifestyle brand, the food is not the only thing, but you have to have the music, the street art, the fashion,” she said. “The reason we are called The Organic Boho, because she is called 'The Organic Boho', the yoga she is doing, her trips to Ibiza she is the essence of the brand, the person we are striving to be, we want our customers to feel like the conscious, cool girl.”
Since opening up their store two years ago, they both feel there are lot more people in Copenhagen who are moving into this conscious lifestyle.
“One way to be conscious is changing your meals, instead of having eggs and bacon in the morning, you can have a breakfast meal that’s 100% organic, reduce your carbon footprint by something, but make an active gesture," Karina said.
Currently, Organic Boho is the only place in Copenhagen that is 100 percent plant-based and organic.
“We work our asses off to really keep it that way.”
Now let’s dive into the food: the main reason we came here. From their picturesque photos on Instagram to their plant-based ingredients, the co-founders, Carissa Herb and myself knew we had to try this out for in person. We ordered the “I am Bright” bowl and the Rainbow Brunch which consisted of matcha pancakes, 3 shot combo, avocado with black sesame/nuts/chili, sweet potato fries, acai bowl, gluten free bread, plant based butter, aioli and Chili mayo.
On top of this we tried two smoothies, the “I am Magic” which consisted of dates, peanut butter, raw cacao, nut milk, banana and the “I am Amazing,” which was our favorite and had spinach, tropical matcha, avocado, banana, ginger, lemon.”
Whereas their menu looks huge, Karina explained to us how they only use 34 ingredients all together and intermix between them all.
With all the fruit they use, they pay attention to food waste. “Every time we juice we take the pulp and we use to make the falafels patties, we want to show we basically have no food waste as well.”
On top of owning their own business, Maria and Karina are both part of Google ambassadors program. They are creating networks within the food industry to help people in Europe gain better knowledge with digital skills. The program which pledged to train 1 million Europeans in digital skills, reached its goal with 3 million last year alone.
So many great achievements are happening with Organic Boho, coming this summer you can find them featured in Elle magazine in their eco-city guide issue.
“When you work a lot, people notice it,” Karina said.
The next time you decide to take a trip to Denmark, which we recommend, stop in for a very balanced breakfast at Organic Boho.