Millennials are now moving on from rainbow foods en masse, and filling their feeds with photos of charcoal. It is the direct opposite of all things magical and cutesy, and it looks tres chic on social media. bamboo charcoal

Although charcoal-based food isn’t exactly new, the ingredient has recently gained popularity as many believe that it could help to cleanse toxins, beat bloating and even cure a hangover. But.. is it worthy of all the hype?

Activated charcoal vs. Bamboo charcoal

Charcoal is really just burnt organic matter. It becomes activated when it’s exposed to certain gases at high temperatures during a special process, which helps the charcoal bind with anything it comes in contact with.

But when you eat activated charcoal, it can also bind with all of the stuff that your body needs — like vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients — which obviously isn’t great. Ironically, it doesn’t bind well with alcohol. So you might have to look for other ways to cure your hangover.

Meanwhile, bamboo charcoal is created by boiling it in distilled water, and then goes through a process that converts it into carbon. It has the same ability to absorb chemicals and substances from the air and water, but it doesn’t quite possess the holding capacity as activated charcoal, which makes it relatively safe to be consumed.

P/S: Did you know that bamboo charcoal can be used in cocktails to create a tastier and smoother texture? Check out these bars around KL and Penang if you’d like to get your hands on the latest bamboo charcoal craze.

1. The Vault, KL 

Specially infused with Earl Grey Bitters, the new Black Diamond cocktail is bound to capture the hearts of tea lovers all over, as it offers a citrus-y taste profile with notes of dark chocolate and nutty hints. Meanwhile, the dark molasses and bamboo charcoal add body and richness to the whole experience.

2. Marini’s On 57

Fancy having a KL skyline view while you take time to enjoy your evening? Marini’s on 57 is just the place for you where they serve a rich and smooth bamboo charcoal cocktail with edible silver dust and flowers to complete your relaxing evening.

3. Chaze Malaysia

Head down to Chaze to enjoy the classy and elegant ambience, while you sip on their sweet tasting bamboo charcoal cocktail mixed with cherry syrup coupled with the refreshing hints of fresh lemon juice.

4. 12Senses

Good food and drinks go together like poetry, feeling like a night out with your friends to unwind after dinner? Try out their bamboo charcoal cocktails made with bitter Nama chocolate and enjoy the smooth and rich cocktail amidst their old school deco in a relaxing ambience.

5. Hidden Tiki

If you are a fan of Tiki’s, try out their rum-based cocktail infused with bamboo charcoal, and be mesmerized with its smoothness and sophisticated presentation.

6. Platform 261

You might have heard about platform 9 ¾, but let us introduce you to platform 261! Yet another go-to place in Penang for your bamboo charcoal cocktail adventure. Who needs magic and wizardry when you have the night to enjoy a rich and smooth cocktail infused with Kenyan tea, bamboo charcoal, the sweet taste of peach and white wine!

With that said, we guess that consuming charcoal is not going to kill you, but just remember to not overdo it.