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mama + papa kanenas

· musings,team kanenas

Hello everyone! Mama Kanenas here. I also go by the name of Robi- but most of you know that already…

I will dedicate today’s post to myself and Panos. A little vane, sure. But as we are the shop, and the shop is us, it really kind of is an intro to what’s behind the scene at Kanenas Coffee.

behind the scenes at Kanenas Coffee London (picture taken 2 days before the temp closure)

Italian by birth, British by adoption, Greek by love, world citizen by life. This is really me in a nutshell. I love embracing new cultures & traditions. And this doesn’t only come through visiting or living in a foreign country. I love the interaction with other places that comes when sharing recipes, telling Christmas traditions, or giving tips to the tastiest Thanksgiving turkeys. It is another way of travelling, which maybe connects us even more, as we are wandering through someone else’s memories & experiences. It’s an emotional journey.

Panos (my partner/ husband/ best friend/ automotive engineer by day/ baker-cook by night) and I met when we were flatmates at university in Kingston upon Thames. 7 bedroom house: one Italian (me), an Athenian (Panos), a Greek gal, a Brit from Yorkshire, a Chinese-Indian-Brit bloke from South-East London, a Cypriot lad and a Japanese-French guy. Cultural shock at its finest. Even the simplest of things- ie dish washing- was carried out in at least 4 different ways under the same roof. Absolutely brilliant.

One of our first real connections was actually food. To keep up the good old stereotype of student meals, I was having cereals for breakfast, lunch and dinner (total laziness rather than “i-am-a-student-and-broke kind of situation). Most probably out of pity, Panos started cooking double portions. He’d have his, and then say: “there’s more in the kitchen- if you don’t have it, I’ll toss it”. Needless to say, leftovers never made it to the bin. I can’t say it was love at the first sight, but it has definitely been since.

When student life came to an end (man do I miss that!), work took us to Cumbria, Manchester, Bristol, and finally back to London about 2.5 years ago… hell of a journey with its ups and downs, but worth every single moment.

And here we are now, channelling all of our experiences, passion, ideas into our first born, baby Kanenas.

opening week- October 2019

Greek meets French: spanakopita croissants

USA meets Middle Eastern: vegan tahini orange brownies

Italian meets Kiwi: beautiful espresso roasted by New Zealand born Allpress

Japanese meets Swedish: organic Oatly matcha latte

British meets Mediterranean: brunch with southern European flavours and local products

one of our signature dishes: Cretan eggs w sourdough toast

This is us…

international, yet local

innovative, yet in love with traditions

exploratory spirit, yet rooted in our origins

in the hope that everyone feels welcome and can discover new flavours as well as tasting their madeleines (Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time, 1913-27)


On a more serious note, we are contemplating reopening on Monday 18th May. I’d only be for takeaway hot and cold drinks, cakes, pastries and savoury treats.

The date isn’t set in stone. We are very concerned with how the UK will manage the whole COVID19 situation from next week Thursday onwards. As we have done so far, we will analyse the state of things and take a decision that will safeguard everyone’s safety above all. Were we to open in 2 week’s time, rest assured it’s just going to be me (Robi) behind the counter dealing with customers, as to look after yours as well as our employees’ wellbeing.

Before saying bye for now, my very own tips for a good quarantine:

  • Exercise daily: follow GymBox for plenty of home workouts (trust me, you won’t feel your legs afterwards)
  • Saturday night Aperitivo with friends through Skype/ Whatsapp/ Zoom: ok, it’s not quite the same but can still be fun and definitely better for your bank account AND YOU CAN WEAR SWEATPANTS!
  • Support your favourite bars/ restaurants/ shops: buy vouchers, order online, google review them (free), send them a Instagram message to show them some love (free)
  • Call love ones regularly: not everyone has a quarantine buddy
  • Experiment in the kitchen (and in the bedroom…)
  • Read!!!
  • Stay informed
  • Don’t be too shy to ask for help: this is not the time to have pride
  • Stay positive… the lockdown/ social distancing measures won’t last forever. This is not how life is going to look like from now on. We have just pressed the “pause” button for a bit. It will all restart sooner than we think.

If you don’t do so already, please follow us on social media (insta, FB, pinterest) to stay connected.

Bye for now,


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