THE DISH: For milkshakes, thickness is a virtue - Daily Nation

THE DISH: For milkshakes, thickness is a virtue

Tuesday November 27 2018

A strawberry milkshake.

A strawberry milkshake. PHOTO| FOTOSEARCH 

By ABIGAIL ARUNGA
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I can't answer for all of Kenya, but in my opinion, the Dormans on Mama Ngina street used to have the absolute best milkshakes, only in competition with the ones at Java.

I like my milkshakes the way I like my wallet – thick and never ending. And for me, there are not a lot of places that necessarily get the exact dynamic I want in a milkshake.

Sometimes it tastes good, but it's basically milk --if I wanted flavoured milk, I would have gotten flavoured milk, #DairyFresh. Sometimes it's thick but overly sweet – a factor that is making me a bit antsy about trying out the giant freak shakes that are all over food enthusiast pages lately.

I mean...you do know that--unless you're an excitable six-year-old child or someone with a particular predilection towards diabetes--desserts don't have to be solely comprised of sugar, right?

A balance is possible. And yes, when you bring us cake, we can taste if you used Blue Band instead of butter (in this economy, though, I get it). And, yes, there is such a thing as too much cream.

Have you ever seen a coffee and accessories display so neat? They sell coffee et al at Connect coffee.

Have you ever seen a coffee and accessories display so neat? They sell coffee et al at Connect coffee. PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA

But I digress. There is such a thing as too much sugar in a milkshake, but there are a few places that get it right – specifically, a place that brought me to its yard, upstairs on its new rooftop area, Connect Coffee.

I was quite the enthusiast when it first opened – those waffles they do are ideal to split on a date, because there's no way to finish one by oneself. Not for me, anyway. They can be a lot.

But then I went back the other day, and not only have they changed the colours on the walls and added butterfly stick-ons to their windows, they also have an upstairs area that overlooks the new hotel next to Kempinski (I've been feeling sorry for Kempinski this whole time. What are they going to do with those rooms that now look straight into the grey face of a towering building in a...um...brick measuring contest? Surely).

Fake butterflies on real plants. So pretty because they can't die and fly into your food.

Fake butterflies on real plants. So pretty because they can't fly into your food. PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA

My niece and I went there to have a quick catch up over coffee and it was a nice view. The furnishing is pretty sparse, and looks like they kind of had a roof and decided to use it, and paint a random mural on the wall with no thematic purpose for the space, but I suppose theme is not the point?

While they get everything right downstairs, I feel like upstairs has no cafe feel to it.

The furnishing is pretty sparse, and looks like they kind of had a roof and decided to use it.

The furnishing is pretty sparse, and looks like they kind of had a roof and decided to use it. PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA

And then on top of that, there's a list of rules on the door that I found a bit ridiculous. It goes as far as to limit touching other guests and noise control. I get noise control to a certain extent. But touching? I was very confused. And I promptly held my niece's hand for longer than I needed to.

The vegetable panini with a weak salad.

The vegetable panini with a weak salad. Romaine and cucumber? Where's the balance? It's just green on more green. Where's the sweetness? PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA

You have to order and pay for your order before you go upstairs. My niece got a vegetarian panini, which tasted good, for vegetables, and a cold press coffee. I tested my milkshake first, the way you would test a Blizzard from Dairy Queen, to see if it would budge, and it didn't! I shook it about and it remained intact.

Cold press coffee

Cold press coffee. PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA


I was very pleasantly surprised that for Connect Coffee milkshakes, thickness is a virtue. It tasted as good as it looked, which was great. The service was okay too, but honestly, I was a bit put off by the vibe of that rooftop terrace. I think I'll just stay downstairs where I'm allowed to touch people (I hope?) and the menu – and the waiters – are closer.

The lovely staff at the counter downstairs.

The lovely staff at the counter downstairs. PHOTO| ABIGAIL ARUNGA

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Wondering where to get the 411 on what's happening in and around Nairobi's foodie scene? There's a lot of places you could go, but here's where we want you to be – getting the dish on the dish. Get it? We knew you would.

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