Mazí Mas is a small pop-up restaurant in London with a global menu at affordable prices. Not only are they offering delicious home-cooked grub from around the world, but more importantly, they are breaking the vicious cycle of unemployment and discrimination that migrant women can be subject to.
Migrant and refugee women often have a hard time when looking for employment, whether it’s because their qualifications are not recognised in the UK, or they simply lack a recent job history having spent years caring for their families.
Nikandre Kopcke, founder of Mazí Mas, has a background in feminist studies and a passion for great food. She witnessed first hand the challenges that migrant women face when Maria, her Greek godmother, failed to realise her dreams of opening a bakery in the United States – Maria’s husband believed that women did not go into business, for they stayed at home and took care of children.
Nikandre was inspired to turn this gender oppression on its head and use it as a catalyst for change. What is the product of years of binding women to the kitchen? Delicious food!
Mazí Mas (means “with us” in Greek) creates employment opportunities for women from migrant and refugee communities and offers them training on how to transform their home-cooking skills to cater for the masses.
Mazí Mas is not the end goal; it’s a stepping-stone where women can gain confidence and practical experience before embarking on their own journey. Many former Mazí Mas employees are now opening businesses, which seek to employ other migrant and refugee women.
Mazí Mas will quite literally take you around the world in seven days with a different speciality—every night of the week—hitting your table from Brazil, Ethiopia, Iran, Peru, Senegal and Turkey.
We were lucky enough to sample some of Azeb’s delicately spiced melt-in-the-mouth Berbere beef and chickpea stew. Azeb is from Ethopia and grew up in a big family where food was the essence in bringing everyone together. Now, with solid work experience under her belt, Azeb dreams of opening an Ethiopian coffee shop in London.
We hope to see Mazí Mas become a permanent fixture in London, but for now it’s only open at the Ovalhouse Theatre until 06 June – so make the most of it. We promise you will not be disappointed!
To find out more and make a booking, visit Mazí Mas.