Here’s the thing, I love new restaurants, cafes and bars as much as the next person BUT I know you have to allow them to get settled. I read once that opening a restaurant is probably one of the hardest ventures for an entrepreneur to take on. A LOT goes into opening a restaurant: conceptualization, branding, menus, staff, electricity, water, safety regulations, food stock, beverages, (sometimes) a liquor license, marketing, venue, rent, managers, need I go on? The list feels endless and every little detail matters. So, when a new restaurant opens (unless I’m going to the launch) I usually like to give them a few months to get into the groove of things. For their team to begin working like a well oiled machine. That isn’t to say that all restaurants have issues when they open, it’s just that it’s more likely for mistakes to happen in the beginning stages. The other benefit for waiting for a few months before visiting the newest spot on the scene is that you get to hear feedback from early adapters before making your final decision.
That brings me to Wasp & Sprout.
“You HAVE to go Soni, you’ll love it!”
“It reminds me of a Cape Town cafe”
“After that one time I went, I go all the time. It’s so great”
I had heard allll about this trendy new cafe in Loresho and now I had to go try it for myself.
I think Jacquie described it best, Wasp & Sprout is the “Junipers of cafes”. It’s got that trendy hipster vibe going on but with modern African flair. When I sat down and opened the menu, I was pleasantly surprised by the breadth of their offering.
I ordered a flat white coffee which I haven’t really seen around Nairobi outside of Wasp & Sprout. Flat whites are kind of like cappuccinos minus the foam on top. They’ve got steamed milk poured over a shot (or two) of espresso. I’m pretty sure I’m butchering the definition of a flat white but just trust me, they’re good.
The menu is plentiful for a small cafe with a small kitchen. They have an array of breakfast options, coffees, teas, juices, a special weekend brunch menu (which I ordered the ricotta pancakes off of), a lunch menu with sandwiches, soups, salads and daily specials, plus wine, cocktails and happy hour! What more could you need? The food is good. I really enjoyed my ricotta pancakes and the menu has got creative twists on cafe classics.
Wasp & Sprout is full of people who are clearly regulars. Or at least, they look like regulars. Small families enjoying leisurely weekend brunch, young adults on their laptops typing away while sipping coffee, kids on big kitenge print couches with their noses deep in books. I think this is the exact sort of gathering place Loresho needed. Wasp & Sprout has got a really home-y feel about it. I got to catch up with the owner, Angela, who told me that her decor inspiration came from her own home. She makes all the furniture for the cafe in her workshop and the pieces you see can be made to order. Her cafe is her show room.
In the back of the cafe is a little shop that blends seamlessly into it’s surroundings. The shop sells jewelry, note books, purses, and other small items. To the left of the cashier counter is a book shelf, stocked with a range of books for you to enjoy in case you find yourself wanting to spend hours at the cafe drinking coffee and relaxing like I did.
I ended up being unable to resist the temptation of the shop and bought a leather clutch. It was an impulse buy but I’m happy I did it! It’s beautiful. Thanks to all of you on Snapchat who helped me make my decision. 🙂
Wasp & Sprout has been open since November 2015 and has been picking up in popularity ever since. I understand it’s appeal, there really isn’t anything like it in Nairobi that I know of.
If you’ve already been, what did you think? If you haven’t been, what’re you waiting for?
Photos by J. Mwai Photography