Zyara Coffee - this time with added Line.

"I'll tell you where it is if you let me come :)"

A simple enough statement, and while it kinda felt a little like blackmail, it also sounded like a good idea.

I had already done enough research via a couple of references I found regarding the mysterious Zyara Cafe, to put me somewhere near the place - but the offer of a guide was too good to refuse.

Some minor texting began, then a phone call, and before I new it I was picking up Line (pronounced Leena - a fellow blogger - and coffee lover) from a bus-stop in town, again in 45 degree heat. It's summer so I guess 45 isn't too surprising, still hot though.. any way you paint it.

I know Line and her husband socially, (we met them recently - her significant other, Paul, is a cracking bloke) and like her direct nature and her "no crap" attitude, so I was looking forward to a couple of hours of coffee and assertive discussion.

What I didn't realise until I picked her up is that she is in fact a liar.

Why? You be the judge...

Upon getting into the mighty chariot de' VW, Line waited for me to pull into traffic before uttering a sentence I was not really prepared for.
"I THINK it's over there..." She said, while pointing in the general direction of about 5 square kilometres of tower blocks.
"What do you mean you THINK?" I said. Concerned that I may yet find myself standing at an intersection staring through the mid afternoon haze at meat on a hook, suffering modest dehydration, and preparing myself to accost innocent bystanders for a caffeinated beverage.

Indeed I suspected that the hula girls, in all their tripod-like beauty, had heard what was going on and were already warming up. (read the "Zyara - epic fail" post it'll make more sense)

She again waved her hand forward and little right of our position, this time rotating her hand in circular motion implying that she had narrowed it down to just the 50 or so towers "..over there".

"But you said..."
Before I could complete my sentence, she added "It's near the Hilton Residences"
"I know that!" I said "I found that out on a website.... so do you know where the Hilton Residences are?"
"Over there..." again with the vague rotation of the right wrist, this time while digging around with her free hand in her very large handbag. After a small struggle, that looked at one stage like the handbag was going to win, a 4 year old visitors guide was produced. Apparently Line had found it in the apartment she and Paul were looking after.

"You're kidding aren't you" I said.
"No, it says right here 'located in the building next to the Hilton Residences' "
"You're sure they're...over there?" I replied affecting her vague hand flopping.
"Not really, there's more than one Hilton" she said fixing me with one of her stares.

Laughing, we turned at the next set of lights in what we hoped to be the general direction of the Hilton Residences.

I'd like to say that we got hopelessly and horribly lost, that we found ourselves in the middle of a desert, bartering for robots with 4-foot-tall robed people standing at the side of a moving junk yard, as the heat of 2 suns beat down upon us, and it was all Line's fault... because she had intimated that she KNEW where the cafe was...

...but no, no Starwars IV fan tributes for us - I think it took about 10 minutes, total, for the trip to the massive carpark that is situated in front of both the Hilton AND the up-until-now elusive Zyara Cafe. Given the initial lack of disclosure on my co-pilot's behalf - I will take full credit.

Regardless that she: saw the building, and the turnoff, AND had indicated the general direction in the first place... I found it.

The entry is just off the street on the left side of the cafe - it's well airconditioned without being cold, and it has a genuinely casual feel to it, rather than the "franchised-faux-casual" thing that I've banged on about in previous posts.

We grabbed a seat and enjoyed the surrounds - lots of rugs thrown about the place, super friendly staff (genuine rather than forced) and that certain something that a lot of the other cafes I've been to here have failed to demonstrate. The fact that Zyara is not attached to a retailing Juggernaut, and is not a cheeseburgers-throw away from a food-court may have something to do with it.

Cakes were ordered.


Not only had Line misled me regarding her 'knowledge' of where we were going ...NOW she was forcing me to order cake. I tried to protest, but the force is strong in that one, and resistance was futile. So I ordered tirimasu (along with a latte).

"None sir..."
So I ordered the next one up the list - honey cake.
"None sir... but you should try... scrergle furningwindle"
He was so passionate about what he wanted me to try that I simply nodded.

"You, have NO idea what you just ordered do you?" Line smirked.
"Shaddup" I said, trying to stay aloof and in control of the situation.
"You don't though, do you?"
" 'No idea' is a bit strong .. but I think it's creme caramel" I sniffed.

For the record - in hindsight it was perfectly clear that he was telling me about the creme caramel - and at no point did he actually say 'scrergle furningwindle', but at the point of ordering, while I was under all that pressure to be polite, he may as well have.

Coffee arrived, and was good - (see scale below), the creme caramel came and it was FANTASTIC - super good, but as this is not a food review I won't go on, other than to say that I'm thankful that these adventures are mostly about coffee. If I were forced to eat delicacies like that every day I'd end up not so much driving my little Polo about as having to wear the poor little beast, and hire some folk to stuff me into the car - Japanese commuter train style - any time I wanted to go anywhere...

A couple of hours later and after discussions ranging from Bukowski to Sims 3, I was dropping Line off again.

Would I go back to Zyara PURELY for the coffee... maybe.
Would I go back to Zyara because it's a great place to go - absolutely, once this review fest is over I think it will end up being my place to go and hang out.

Seriously great, local feel and pretty good coffee.

Would I go out for coffee with Line again - sure... I just won't rely on her for directions.
  • ADNOC - (even with the current 'no big cups' issue)
  • Zyara
  • The One
  • Le Brioche "Marina Mall"
  • Starbucks
  • Anything else, including but not limited to, licking tarmac
  • CDR - Worst coffee ever - will post at a later date.

1 comment:

  1. Really? A Liar? That's a bit drastic, I like to think of it as Liberal in the Truth Department, but that's just me :)
    I was tempted to write a 100 page rebuttal, but thought these five simple words summed it up better,
    'You Are Welcome Mister Webber'.

    In other news, I went to get my nails done last week and walked past Le Brioche and Idioms to get there


Andrew Webber is a writer, living in Abu Dhabi with his wife, two cats and two dogs.

His first book "Erasure" was published in June 2012 and was followed in 2013 by the Prequel to Erasure, "Broken".

In 2016 Erasure was a prize winner in the Montegrappa Writing Prize - part of the Emirates Airlines Festival of Literature.

For more information click the "Erasure" book cover on the left side of this site, or simply go to

Thanks for visiting.