Meet: Flotsam & Jetsam
This month we're getting to know Hana Jowitt, founder of Flotsam & Jetsam…
Hana is a Kiwi in London committed to satisfying your coffee and brunch cravings through her independent café, Flotsam and Jetsam in Wandsworth. We host our Spread supper club on the last Friday of every month in the café and help Hana by hosting all their private events too. So, if you’ve got something in mind and need a venue we’d definitely suggest popping in to visit Hana for a coffee to get a feel for the space (pups welcome).
When and how did Flotsam & Jetsam begin?
The idea started when I first moved to London in 2012. My way of exploring my new city was to check out the different neighbourhoods …and of course the local cafés! I realised there were plenty more opportunities for artisanal, independent cafés. I did a lot of research, wrote a business plan and went back home to apply for a new visa (and get some inspo at the same time!).
On returning in 2014 I started to look for a location and stumbled across our current site in August. We got the keys in November and after a full refurb and fit-out we opened our doors in February 2015. Coming from an office job, with limited ‘hospo’ experience, I was certainly throwing myself in the deep end. But I loved the challenge and enjoyed being able to take some risks and make my own decisions.
What is it you love most about your job, and what’s the most challenging part?
I’m involved in an industry which is considered to be positive and fun…no one I know dreads going for brunch!
It’s nice getting to know our regulars and seeing them enjoying themselves in our café. It’s also great to be able to make a living out of two of my passions: food and coffee. As for the challenging part – it’s a very fast paced industry so it’s important we don’t rest on our laurels. Keeping our standards up and ensuring we are always introducing new and exciting items on the menu so our customers have something to look forward to.
Where do you go, physically and online, to get inspiration?
Physically – travelling! As well seeing the landmarks and sites in new places, I always make a list of cafés and restaurants to visit to draw inspiration from. Additionally, we have a multi-national team and they forever surprise me with their creativity for our own new dishes.
Brunch spots back in New Zealand and Australia are known for producing amazing dishes and drinks (NZ invented the flat white!) and there are plenty of cool new concepts popping up. My instagram feed is pretty much food and coffee.
What’s been the most memorable moment so far and why?
I’ve kept all of my old notebooks and it’s fun looking back at when it was just an idea on paper and to see where it is today. It’s heart-warming to know we’ve created something special for our local community to enjoy.
What food could you not live without?
BBQs in Summer and roasts in Winter. The simple things done well with a good crowd of people!
And Whittaker’s chocolate from New Zealand. I LOVE anyone who gives me a block or two of these bad boys! If you know, you know.
Do you have a favourite food memory?
It’s not a memory, as such, because I was too young to remember…but I’ve been told my first ‘food’ was ice cream. I put my hands out towards the cone and my grandad couldn’t resist and let me make a mess of it round my face. To this day ice cream is still my weakness!
Who would you invite round as a special dinner party guest?
For chat - Louis Theroux
For looks - Ryan Gosling
For awkwardness - Donald Trump
What do you want from the bar?
A G&T will do me, or a F&J Bloody Mary ;)
See more from Flotsam & Jetsam here.