Phew! 2022 has been a Rollercoaster but we made it to December and I’m so proud of you. Pat yourself on the back and grab a drink to celebrate because you deserve it. Also, all that money you’ve been saving all year long, SPEND IT!! (Disclaimer: this is not the best financial advice. However, it is the best enjoyment advice) and this blog promotes enjoyment only!
Now, to the business of the day. Here’s a spot worthy of spending all your savings on. A little over priced, but worth it. Trust me! Maishayi Coffee has been on my list for a very long time. I prayed and wished they would open a branch in Abuja and they finally did. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to visit immediately they opened until now.
Maishayi coffee Roasters is located at No 84 Kwame Nkrumah, Asokoro Abuja, Nigeria. I must admit, it is not in a very Obvious spot so you have to look very carefully not to loose your way if you are using google map. It is hidden in a very big compound so even if you do make your way into the compound you have to look closely to find it. I circled the street about 3 times before I found it. The area is quite residential and there’s no obvious sign outside indicating where it is. When I visited the restaurant I had my laptop in my bag and I was immediately cautioned at the door by one of the waitresses that laptops were not allowed in the restaurant, they even had a sign at the door. I was quite annoyed after this because I had purposely come with my laptop to create content and that immediately threw my plan out the window. I already came to a conclusion that I would not be having the best time there because my day was already off to a bad start. I’m so glad I was proven wrong because my visit to Maishayi was nothing short of spectacular. It was one I have not quite experienced before. The staff exhibited such love, dedication and knowledge about coffee and the establishment. It was beautiful.
We were attended to by Ken, one of the best waiter’s/barista’s that have attended to me in all my time of visiting restaurants. He was extremely polite, patient and courteous. He first welcomed us to the restaurant then presented us with the menu, after which gave us some time to place our order. When we finished ordering, he took us through an entire coffee journey. We got to experience different coffee brewing styles, learn about coffee types and their origins. We even got to see raw coffee before roasting and afterwards. The whole service made me feel at home. I finally felt like I belonged in the coffee lovers association. It was such an incredible feeling!
The restaurant ambience is warm and welcoming. If you’re a lover of dark themed interior you will definitely love this place. The restaurant is small and cannot sit up to 20 people at once. Its sitting capacity is about 10-15. Luckily, it is in a hidden area so you’re not likely to meet a lot of people there. This means you can peacefully enjoy your dining experience. One of the things that really stood out for me in the space were the unique tables. The tables at the restaurant were made of wood and glass which interestingly has actual roasted coffee beans in them. I admire the creativity.
At the restaurant, they had different coffee displays and equipments for sale. They also a private room where coffee where coffee is being roasted. Fortunately, we got a tour of the coffee roasting room and a sneak peak of how the process is carried out.
The restaurant menu is not large but it features a number of options. They mainly serve breakfast options and main dishes. They also have a variety of drinks, especially COFFEE! For some reason I did not expect them to have cocktails and shots but they did. The restaurant is in-between expensive and affordable. I found the drinks most affordable. As for the food, I think it is unnecessarily overpriced. The food menu comprised of some Northern Nigerian dishes and also some foreign meals. If you are familiar with northern Nigerian food you will know that Masa and Tuwo are two local dishes very common to that area. Normally, a single piece of masa goes for about N20 – N200 with complimentary soup. On this menu a single piece of masa goes for N1,000 and a complete masa dish with soup costs N11,000 Which is unnecessarily outrageous if you ask me.
Food & Coffee
Visiting Maishayi coffee I had my mind fixated on one thing and one thing only, MASA! The reason is because it is OVERPRICED! So you know, I thought to myself maybe it is really good or there’s some spectacular element that makes it so expensive. Also, there were little tweaks here and here to redefine masa, like the masa burger and sandwich, so I just had to try it! I ordered the masa burger meal with a side of French fries and a cup of Hazelnut latte. Hadiza (@hadizaeats.com) had chicken breast and potato wedges with a side of sautéed vegetables. She also had a glass of orange juice and affogato coffee.
Masa Burger – N8,000 + French fries – N2,500
After the masa burger was served, it was the moment of truth! It was a colourful plate very appealing to the eyes. It looked like a typical burger meal but instead of bread bun, it was masa. I mean I have to give it to them. It is a creative idea and I like that they didn’t approach it with mediocrity. The chef went all out to perfect it and he/she nailed it. It totally looked and tasted like an actual burger. The masa burger was made with a beef patty, sunny side up egg and cheese. The burger was served with chips, ketchup, tomatoes, lettuce, onions and a mayo dip.
The masa bun was soft, fluffy and with a had a smooth texture. The masa was made with little sugar so the salt in it was a bit more prominent (it wasn’t salty though) It was alright. The masa burger was quite big, so it was difficult to pick up and fit in all in my mouth like a normal burger so I dissected it and ate it with a fork and knife. The beef patty in the masa burger was a bit hard and not too juicy. When eaten together with the mayo dip, the masa burger is way more delicious!
Summarily, I would say the masa burger was not bad. It is a brilliant approach to making and enjoying masa. However, I really do not think it is necessary. Some dishes are better enjoyed as they are. Masa is not just any dish, it is a traditional meal that should be made and served just as it is without trying to westernise it. Westernising such a dish may be creative but it misplaces it’s originality.
Chicken breast, sautéed vegetables with potato wedges – N8,500
Hadiza couldn’t have had a more perfect plate. I noticed that the chef(s) at the restaurant have a way with plating, which is amazing because they make every dish look scintillating. Everything on the plate was perfectly made. Perfect seasoning, Perfect texture, Perfect flavours and Perfect colours. I enjoyed every bite I took from the plate.
Affogato coffee – N3,500
The Affogato coffee was the star of Hadiza’s visit. You know how I had masa on my mind? That’s the same way Hadiza wanted this coffee. Before my visit to Maishayi coffee I had never heard of it or even seen it before so it was quite interesting to me. It is basically Vanilla ice cream topped with caramel sauce with a shot of espresso on the side. The thing is, you pour the shot of hot espresso over the ice cream and it melts into one of the most amazing coffee combos you will ever try. The clash of hot & cold is truly divine and the taste and flavours will leave you speechless! I loved the affogato so much, I almost ordered another cup but there was no more space in my stomach for it. I will definitely be going back for it.
Hazelnut Latte – N2,890
I have tried hazelnut a number of times and I like it so I decided it will be a good choice to have Hazelnut latte because it was the only seemingly different latte on the menu. My latte was made with hazelnut syrup, milk and expresso. It was made by a very nice Kenyan Barista named Betty. She took us through the coffee making process and we got to watch her make the beautiful pattern on the face of the coffee. I enjoyed the latte a lot and I’m glad I chose it.
TOTAL BILL – NGN29,700 (including VAT & service charge)
My experience at Maishayi coffee roasters was very enlightening. It is not just a regular step out and dine kind of place. It is so much more. You get free knowledge about coffee, dining in a serene environment and good food. It is truly a coffee lovers haven and it has indeed earned its title. It is one of its kind in Abuja and definitely worth every penny and every minute spent.
There are some rumours that the restaurant may be changing to a new and more accessible location. I can’t wait to see if it’s true. If it turns out to be true, you already know there’ll be a part 2 to this blog post.