Friday, January 16, 2015

Full time Mum and nutrition specialist Kim Sowah has teamed up with her childhood friend and interior designer Keeley McKenzie to open up a unique coffee shop in Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle

Coffee & Fandisha offers a fresh addition to Liverpool’s growing appetite for artisan and specialist coffee. Sourced entirely from local and cooperative farms in Ethiopia, the Brick Street Coffee shop takes inspiration from the traditional ways of an Ethiopian coffee ceremony: serving their coffee alongside complimentary baskets or bowls of spiced popcorn (known as fandisha)


The coffee shop also has a fantastic array of food on offer. Toasted sandwiches on malted bread from a local bakery, and packed with adventurous fillings are a staple at the shop, alongside super food salads and mouth-watering cakes. There is also a focus on health foods at Coffee & Fandisha, an influence from Kim who studied a higher diploma in Nutrition and has a passion for eating well. The shop offers freshly pressed juices and home-made smoothies alongside cakes and sandwiches.

‘I’ve always wanted my own coffee shop because I am passionate about the coffee, and also working with the public. I have a little girl and felt it was time to regain my independence by creating something of my own.’

Inspired by her partner’s Ethiopian roots, Kim wanted to bring this culture of coffee bringing families together, to Liverpool’s coffee scene. ‘Once Keeley and I decided we were going to start the business, we spent a lot of time in various coffee shops to start gathering inspiration. With an idea of what we wanted, the search for a suitable venue began.’ They quickly found the perfect space in the Baltic Triangle in November of 2013, before moving in by January 2014.

‘When we moved in, the shop was a shell. Over time, we designed everything ourselves. We didn’t compromise on anything, all of our equipment is excellent quality, and finishing it was an amazing feeling.’

Coffee & Fandisha’s interior comprises mostly of dark, warm woods and oversized hanging light bulbs which hang from the beamed ceiling. Kim and Keeley were savvy with their designing, and up cycled the majority of their furniture- finishing key pieces with varnish, amongst many other details which mirror the industrial feeling of the Baltic Triangle but with much added warmth. 

Although the passion and talent was apparent, opening a business was a new venture for the pair, and Kim contacted The Women’s Organisation for start-up support. ‘Francine helped me further develop my business plan and cash flow forecast. She was really supportive and a great mentor. Even after we opened the shop, she was there to give me marketing advice and ideas.’

Coffee & Fandisha is going from strength to strength and is bustling with customers throughout the day. Kim says; ‘Things are going great at the moment. We are busy with a mixture of regulars and new customers discovering us for the first time.’ For Kim, The Baltic Triangle is a great place for a business as it benefits from the creative industries who work in the surrounding areas, with offices being situated in the adjoining building to Coffee & Fandisha.

With Coffee & Fandisha proving to be a hit, Kim has this advice to offer those thinking of starting their own business; ‘Be completely open-minded, know your market and remain positive. But one of the most important things is that you need to have complete confidence in your product.’

Kim and Keeley are working to continue the success of Coffee & Fandisha, and in the future hope to open another shop. If you want to experience the combination of coffee and popcorn, or grab a bite to eat, Coffee & Fandisha can be found on Brick Street. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter: @Coffeefandisha. To contact the directly – 0151 708 6492 / info@coffeefandisha.com

Do you have an idea that you want to explore? The Women’s Organisation’s business start-up support is free to women in Merseyside looking to start a business. 0151 706 8111 / hello@thewo.org.uk www.thewomensorganisation.org.uk

Photo Credit: Barbara Idasiak Photography



1 comment:

  1. I'll deffo give this place a visit, it;s sounds boss x

    ReplyDelete