Coconut Cartel

 

Hustled from El Salvador, the Coconut Cartel smuggle real-deal coconuts into Miami's trendiest restaurants and hotels.

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Maria Tettamanti

Don’t let the name fool you. There’s nothing criminal about this local business helmed by Miami Beach natives and Mike and Danielle Zig. Smuggling real-deal coconuts into Miami’s trendiest restaurants and exclusive hotels such as The Broken Shaker at Freehand Miami, Carrot Express, My Ceviche, OTC in Brickell, Pura Vida Cafe, Soho Beach House, Miami Beach and The Standard Spa Miami, we chat up Co-Founder Mike on his sweet success.

Most siblings want to strangle one another. But your business partner is your sister — how is that dynamic? Family is key; I can't imagine not working with my sister. It's a total family business.  

How was the Coconut Cartel business seed planted? It was one of those happenstance moments. We were really hungover one afternoon in El Salvador and my buddy pulled two coconuts out of the fridge and opened them with his keys — it was crazy. I had never seen a coconut opened that easily or tried a coconut that tasted like that. Push came to shove and the cartel was born.    

Your Malayan Dwarf coconuts hail from a 110-year-old family-run farm off a remote island near the coast of El Salvador. What makes them so special? My friend’s great grandfather had a taste for the finer things in life from cars, planes to coconut water. He specifically chose these coconuts because they are the best-tasting on earth.   

Contrary to say, Vita Coco, your product remains in its original packaging. Who drummed up that idea? Nature.    

We love that your coconuts are laser-embossed with your company's name — are they customizable for personal events? Yes, but only for a select few clients.   

Coconut water and oil are clearly having a moment — but what are the benefits of drinking coconut water? Coconut water is basically getting an IV sans the needle — it’s loaded with potassium, electrolytes and low on sugar.   

What is Miami's best-kept secret? The Roger Bowl at My Ceviche.  

It's your day off — quick! — what are you doing? What's a day off? You can find me at Soho Beach House eating Dirty Burgers and schmoozing.  

If you weren't the Head Boss of the cartel, what would be Plan B? Who knows? I'm not a fan of plans. I kind of like winging it!

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