Wednesday February 28th, 2024
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The Centre Won't Hold, But the Beginning Will at Alexandria's Zed & Co

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day - both to doctors and to Zed & Co.

Layla Raik

One year ago, the brilliant chefs behind Gourmeal - the healthy meal prep companion we have all, at some point, leant on for assistance - brought their heads together to formulate a breakfast menu that would truly cement it as the most important meal of the day. The result? Zed & Co.

An introduction may not be necessary - by now, Zed & Co. has likely invaded your TikTok and Reels feeds or earned a spot in your group chat as a must-go breakfast spot, making it the new it-girl of Alexandria. With its minimalistic, grounded interiors, cosy ambience and absolutely delicious breakfast-oriented menu, the spot has cemented itself as the breakfast nook to get your life together in this 2024.

That all of this would happen, however, could not have crossed the mind of aerospace engineer Ziad Wassif, the founder of Zed & Co. and Gourmeal, when he was just a fresh graduate on the streets of London. A few years after obtaining his degree, Ziad founded Gourmeal, a subscription service that enables young people living alone and busy parents to indulge in ready-to-cook healthy meals as simple as YouTube Premium. After the service’s success, he found himself looking for something more.

“I noticed that there were no nice spots designed primarily for breakfast in Alexandria,” explains Wassif. “Nowhere calm and cosy enough in my city where I could lodge for the morning with a good bite and a cup of coffee.” So, he moved back home to create a breakfast nook his past self would thank him for.

“Everything about the interior is handpicked with a specific ambience in mind. Simple - but not plain. Warm - but not overbearing. Everything down to the music we play is chosen to convey a certain message, to maintain a certain relationship with our customers,” Wassif tells Scene Eats.

“To build a stronger connection with our clientele, we picked a symbol to represent Zed & Co.: the cactus. The whole spot is filled with cactuses, small and big. I personally just love them. We also have a collection of rare mini cactuses that we sometimes sell to big cactus fans as well.”

Everything from the stone walls, warm lighting, pink accents and cactus easter eggs serve to make Zed & Co. a comprehensive coffee district that welcomes visitors from all walks of life into its midst. Indoctrinated by TikToks, like us, they walk in for the vibes and stay for the food. “We spent a year designing our breakfast menu with the help of our chefs at Gourmeal. We wanted to make sure it was stacked with breakfast dishes that were, one by one, sure to bring something special to the table.”

Before long, however, the people had to kick Ziad’s groundbreaking breakfast-only idea to the curb. They seemed to want more and more of Zed & Co., and the chefs of Gourmeal had to once again bring their heads together to expand the spot’s menu to last day-long stays. With everything from matcha lattes to salmon benedicts and teriyaki chicken, Zed & Co. dwellers can brave their days with a calm heart and an ever-full belly.

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