Let me ask you a few questions. Are you a fan of minimalist design? Do you like making or buying handcrafted things? Do you support local brands? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you should definitely check out Makers Café in Maginhawa.
I first stumbled upon Makers Café while scrolling through Instagram looking for new places to check out. It was the café’s design that piqued my interest. It is bijou in size and has a minimalistic design. I got the chance to meet the owners of Makers Café, Kim Tiamlee and Jed Tee, who are both architects.
Kim Tiamlee is an architect by profession, but is also a licensed real estate broker, entrepreneur, blogger, and jewelry maker at Pulseras by Kim. Tee works full-time in designing and building in architecture. Both are very outgoing and easy to talk to, which made our time at the café memorable and special.
Kim Tiamlee and Jed Tee, the owners of Makers Cafe
Makers Café officially opened in September and is a product of both Tiamlee and Tee’s long-time dream. The inspiration behind the café’s name came from Tiamlee’s dream of creating and promoting more makers. Tee also revealed the deeper meaning of the café’s name from Psalms 146:6: “He is the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them— he remains faithful forever.” He also explained that they chose to name the café Makers Café because everything in the café from the coffee to the pasta and the products are made by hand using local materials and ingredients.
When I asked Tiamlee about the idea behind the café’s minimalist design, she shared that she is a minimalist and only wants to add what is necessary. They used monotone colors in the café to keep things simple and intentional to make things stand out more. Tee also added that since the café is small, following a utilitarian design would make the products shine through.
Their main goal in the café is to promote making because people these days have been spending too much time looking at screens. “There’s more to life than your screen,” said Tiamlee. Helping out local makers is one of their goals; whatever’s in the café is part of the making community.
They also host collab workshops with various makers in the café where one can register if they wish to attend. The café is currently partnered with six different local makers and features various art pieces of local artists.
If you look closely, these two pieces are made of different magazine cutouts.
Aside from products, Makers Café also offers various drinks and dishes that anyone will surely enjoy. We were able to sample five different drinks and three different dishes. The drinks I had were: Ice White, Makers’ Cappuccino, Matcha Milkshake, Choco Truffle Milkshake, and Makers’ Milk Tea.
The coffee beans used in my ice white and cappuccino are the Kalsada blend. It has a fruity taste and the smell of a famous chocolate hazelnut spread. It is not as bitter or as sharp as barako, which I like; it also leaves a soothing warm feeling on the palate.
The Makers’ Cappuccino
The milkshakes will surely perk you up with their milky flavor. The Choco Truffle Milkshake will give you a nostalgic feeling as it has the familiar chocolatey taste of our childhood. Surprisingly, the Choco Truffle Milkshake wasn’t as sweet as the Matcha Milkshake. The Matcha Milkshake leans more on the milky side. If you like Matcha drinks but get offset by the tea’s seaweed-ish flavour, then this is the perfect drink for you.
Choco Truffle and Matcha Milkshakes
The dishes I had were: Triple Cheese Grilled Sandwich, Pesto and Cheese Sandwhich, and the Chicken Alfredo. Both sandwiches used two types of cheddar and one American cheese. The Chicken Alfredo is what my favorite amongst the three. The creaminess of the white sauce evenly coats all pasta noodles and every bite is a delightful experience. You can feel the creaminess and the richness of the pasta sauce enveloping your whole palate. The heat from the cayenne works perfectly well with the seasoning of the chicken and pasta.
Top: Triple Cheese Sandwich and Pesto & Cheese Sandwich; Bottom: Chicken Alfredo
The café will also be offering different kits with a consumable amount for either drinks or food that you can do while at the café.
We were privileged to be the first ones to try the café’s making kit. It was a lot of fun making and stamping our own chord organizers and bracelets.
Tiamlee and Tee plan to expand the café in the future to be able bring more local brands in and hopefully enlarge the community of makers in the country. They also plan to become vegan friendly to cater to future vegan customers.
I truly enjoyed my time at Makers Café. The food and drinks offered are affordable and scrumptious. The laid-back atmosphere and the wonderful people in the café will surely make your overall café experience an enjoyable one. I’ll be ending this article by saying: “Support the Makers!”
Makers Cafe, 72 Maginhawa Street, Quezon City