Life in Berlin
Mon July 16, 2012
In Kreuzberg, German Waffles Get A Turkish Makeover
Twenty-four year-old Ulvi Topcuoglu grew up in Charlottenburg, studied business, and has quite a sweet tooth.
Together with his brother Bahri, he created "Wonder Waffle," a combination of waffle, fruit, sauce, and toppings, which, Topcuoglu says, is a new way of preparing waffles in Germany.
The two brothers wanted to make some extra cash while studying, so they renovated and opened a small storefront near Kottbusser Tor.
Topcuoglu says his favorite waffle combination is chocolate and strawberry sauce with peanut butter, bananas, strawberries, and a chocolate bar inside, topped with almonds and croquant.
According to Topcuoglu, it's a good "pick me up" during the day.
The inspiration for Wonder Waffle came on holiday in Turkey.
"It's street food from Turkey," he says. "You can get it on every corner, whether it's in Istanbul or Ankara. It's in every city."
On vacation, he ate waffles three or four times a week and decided to try it out in Berlin.
"Wonder Waffle" opened last March. The snack bar is pink and turquoise. Pink, because Ulvi wanted to attract girls. (He says women like waffles more than men). They chose turquoise because it adds a classic feeling.
His mother prepares the secret waffle dough. Customers can choose different fruits, like kiwis, strawberries, bananas, or apricots, and they can add chocolate bars or Oreo's.
You can pick apple or white chocolate sauce and top the waffle with Smarties or almonds. Because the stuffed waffle, smothered in sauce and various toppings, looks a lot like a Döner Kebab, he has marketed "Wonder Waffle" as the first fruit Döner in Berlin.
His strategy has been successful; Ulvi Topcuoglu has hit the taste buds of foreigners and Berliners alike, but the most important thing to him is the atmosphere.
He calls it a "hot spot," a place where everyone meets. Whether it's a woman with a head scarf or a tattooed twenty-something, Topcuoglu says, at Wonder Waffle, they'll sit side by side.