Chef Imoteda is Cooking Her Way to Your Heart

In the two short years of this blog’s existence, we’ve had the opportunity to meet all sorts of amazing people in Lagos’ culinary scene. Chef Imoteda is right at the top of the list. 

Culinary school graduates tend to be very stiff with their food. Everything feels so premeditated and calculated. There’s just something about Imoteda’s work that makes her stands out. A little edge to her approach to food, you might say. There’s also personality to her cooking and a distinct lack of pretension,  both of which are rare in these parts. 

We got the chance to send some questions her way for the blog

For the folks unfamiliar, what/who is Heels In The Kitchen?

Heels in the Kitchen is a food service company headed by Chef Imoteda (daz me plix). We offer a range of food services from private chef services for intimate events up to 60 people, recipe development and food styling for brands and more recently quick and easy recipe videos that are easy to recreate by viewers in their home.

And yes, we often cook in heels. Someone didn’t think that brand through tbh. The blisters are so real.

You do a lot of private chef work in Lagos, right? What your favorite story? 

You people trying to ensure I never get work again abi

One time, I had a guest, at a dinner I served, book me for a dinner cause she loved the food so much. She pretty much booked me in front of her hosts. I’m like, "that’s cool!".

So we’re emailing back and forth about the menu, she wants the same menu but doesn’t want to pay the same cost. So, I come up with a similar but less expensive menu, right? All through this, the client keeps telling me “I want the radishes", so make sure the radishes are on the menu. I think you like radishes like that? Okay, cool beans. Here are some radishes on your salad.

I get there on the day, serve the first two courses and I’m plating up the dessert when the client calls me out to the dining room and demands to know where her radishes are.

In front of her guests!

So I say, “I put the shaved radishes on your salad cause that’s the only place that makes sense. Didn’t you notice?”.  


At this point, I’m just lost AF. So I’m standing there looking like -____-. Her husband clearly slightly embarrassed goes “Dear, the radish was on the salad now. Maybe you didn’t get on your plate.” Then she goes “No now. Remember the radishes she served at Mrs. N’s house. The one with the red and the green sauce on the black plate.”

Turns out the entire time we were emailing about radishes, the darling lady was actually referring to crab cakes!!!

Her husband clocked this and had to explain to his guests who are at this point feeling mad uncomfortable, that his darling wife knows not the difference between crab cakes and radishes. I just jejely slunk back into the kitchen and laughed silently into my crème brûlée

LMAO, That's wild.

Anyway, you’re starting your food tour this month, what’s the whole idea behind it?

The idea behind the Nigerian Fusion Food Tour is to export the tastes and flavors of Nigerian cuisine to a wider audience. We have such a wealth of fresh and vibrant ingredients here as well as an insane amount of different cultures all of whom have their own meals. So, it’s ridiculous that outside Nigeria most people don’t know what Nigerian food is.

Apart from Jollof Rice, eh?

It’s also a chance for us to show Nigerians that we don’t have to continue to cook our foods in the same way as our grandmothers and their mothers did. It’s time to break the mold and get creative with our food. Pyam is not the worst of it. There’s the moi-moi spread, the egusi tortellini and my personal fave, the plantain puree. There is so much we can do and the food tour is just showing the very tip of the iceberg.

Speaking of Nigerian fusion, a couple months ago you launched a project Eko Street Eats with a pop up at Stranger. You haven't had another event since that first one. When is it back?

Man, that was almost a year ago. Eko Street Eats is a collaboration between myself and Chef Ramon (@ohwallaby). We created it honestly as a bit of stress relief. When food is your life, you need a space where food can be fun and removed from the stress of client demands. We had to take a little break due to some health related issues but we’ll be back in 2017 for sure.

Ok, a question from left field. If you could have a kitchen superpower i.e. like one thing you wish you could super fast and very well. What do you wish it to be?

Kitchen super power? Sigh, this is gonna be so pedestrian but it would probably be the ability to whisk super fast. I really hate whisking, I’ll hand the whisk to someone else as often as I can. Lol

Fill in the blanks

My favorite restaurant in Lagos… The Place (Jollof Rice and Asun. Judge me. I’ll fight you)

The most famous person I’ve cooked for… I did a dinner with ALL the heavy hitters of Lagos high society once, talk about pressure. The people that matter the most to me though are, Mrs. Ibukun Awosika & Mrs. Fela Durotoye, both at another dinner. That was dope to me. Also, Pastor Paul Adefarasin is someone I cook for quite often as well as his non-Nigerian gospel guests.

The best thing I ever cooked was... Everything I cook. Honestly, I can’t answer this cause my skills grow daily so things get better literally from day to day

My favorite spice is... Black pepper

My go-to grocery shop in Lagos is...  Spar in Lekki. Never the VI one. Trust me.

EDL Weekender: Picnic & Ribs

EAT - Honey BBQ Ribs @ BL Restaurant


NOSA: These might be the only ribs in Lagos as tender as Urban Fuxion. Maybe even more. HIGHLY recommend.

FOLLY: Tastes just as good as leftovers too cause if you're anything like me, you might not be able to eat it all in one sitting. (ps. the ribs are pork)


DRINK - Ogogoro Collins @ Nok

NOSA: I was at Nok for dinner last night and I got this.It’s not real Ogogoro (shouts to Mode for giving me the real experience), but it’s still one of the better cocktails they have.

FOLLY: I really like the Guavarita, but that's just me. 

LAGOS* - MovieNic (Get Outside)


EMEKA: For this October edition we're feeling halloween vibes and will be showing a scary movie. Bring a bottle & blanket. RSVP Closes Friday 21 2016 at 11:00PM.

Time: 5:00PM (Picnic), 7:15PM (Movie)
Fee: RSVP here or on the NTDIL app.  Entrance is N1,000 without RSVP.
Location: 19b Adeyemi Lawson, Ikoyi, Lagos


BONUS - Eat.Drink.Lagos x Jameson Brunch!

NOSA: Because we’re out here like that.

* Curated by

Doing anything fun this weekend? Share with us.

EDL Taste Test: Cafe Neo vs My Coffee

FOLLY: We've been trying to do a meat pie taste test for a couple of weeks. However, Mr. Biggs meat pie is so difficult to track down that I wonder why some people still hold on to it as the best meat pie in Lagos when you can't even get it to buy.

Anyways, till we can track down a Mr. Biggs that's still open, we decided to do a taste test comparing the two main coffee shops in Lagos - Cafe Neo and My Coffee. 

NOSA: For the longest time, Cafe Neo was the only proper coffee shop we had in Lagos. Sure, there’s Art Cafe and, to some degree, Jazzhole, but neither afforded you the chance to grab a cup on your way to work. Art Cafe and Jazzhole are “fancier” cafés in some ways. Anyway, enough of this gist. My Coffee came along to upset this Cafe Neo monopoly so we’re doing a comparison.



my coffee neo 1.JPG

NOSA: Cafe Neo only has two cup sizes N900 and N1000.

FOLLY: My Coffee has 4 - N650, N770, N990 and N1200.



NOSA: My Coffee is a lot stronger, but it’s also a lot lighter. Almost like coffee water. Cafe Neo feels richer and thicker.



FOLLY: I don't know what Nosa has against "thin drinks". He's number one complaint about drinks he doesn't like is always "it's too thin". 

I've had coffee from My Coffee and Cafe Neo several times before this "taste test", and one thing I feel the need to add is that My Coffee's caramel macchiato is consistent, it always tastes the same. On the contrary, I feel we caught Cafe Neo on a good day because I was literally in there last week and I got a terrible tasting coffee drink parading itself as a macchiato. 



My Coffee

My Coffee

NOSA: For a caramel macchiato, My Coffee’s iteration has next to no caramel.


NOSA: Neo takes this round easy.



NOSA: Cafe Neo, for me. 

FOLLY: Samesies. 

Work Lunches: Sydney's Cuisine

Our "Work Lunches" series focuses on your non-traditional food establishments, the ones without brick and mortar locations. For nomenclature purposes, we'll call them Online Restaurants

Sydney's Cuisine

0813 277 61510813 326 6466

NOSA: So we haven’t done a work lunch in a while. Considering I’m a cubicle warrior again, it’s a tad disappointing. Not to worry, we’re doing a bunch of them over the next month. 

First off…Sydney’s Cuisine.

On Monday, I had the Sweet Potato Mash and Grilled Chicken off the daily menu.

FOLLY: Same here, as there was just one lunch option on this day. 

sydneys cuisine lunch review-1.jpg

NOSA: The mash was absolutely delicious. It had some lumps here and there, but the consistency was solid overall.

FOLLY: My food came stone cold considering it was about 4 hours between when I placed the order and eventually got the food, but more on that later

sydneys cuisine lunch review-4.jpg

NOSA: I wish the meal came with gravy of some sort, but I totally understand why they went with the tomato sauce it came with. Perfect for the Nigerian palate and whatnot. 

FOLLY: The tomato sauce was pretty delightful, packed with flavor and lots of onions which I love. I do think they serve it with gravy sometimes because of pictures I saw on their Instagram page. 

NOSA: The chicken was pretty quality, but you’d be forgiven if you forgot about it. It’s like a Beyonce album in some ways. It’s great when it comes out, but by summer, you can’t remember it. I mean, does anyone still listen to Lemonade? It was fire when it came out though. 

sydneys cuisine lunch review-3.jpg

FOLLY: I was a bit meh on the chicken because of the pieces I was served. I believe at the price point for the chicken (N1500), I, at least, deserve a boneless fillet. It's not really convenient to be trying to work around the bone in a plastic container with for and knife.

NOSA: Now to the bad. 

The delivery is an absolute disaster. On the first day we ordered, the delivery driver stopped picking up his phone. He calls me to tell me he’s at my office. I go down to meet him and he’s not picking the number he called me from. This goes on for 30 odd minutes, before Sydney’s Cuisine HQ gives me a different number to reach him on.

FOLLY: The first day I ordered I placed my order at 12:25pm and my order arrived at 4.01 pm.

We decided to give them another chance and not make a hasty conclusion....

NOSA: The second day, well, the food didn’t come. 

FOLLY: On the second day, I placed my order at 11:38am and 3.18pm I sent a text to cancel it because at this point, I was over it. My text wasn't even acknowledgedWhat's crazier is that not only did Nosa's order never come, they never contacted him to explain or anything. 

NOSA:I understand delivery is beyond the scope of the food vendor, but it’s still very much part of the experience. There’s no point making the most delicious of lunches if your delivery guy doesn’t deliver until dinner time.


NOSA: I like Sydney’s Cuisine as far as food goes, but ordering lunch from them is a pain.

FOLLY: I really wanted to like this because they are a previous festival vendor but the entire process was a disaster. I also think it's a little expensive. 



Delivery - N500

Grilled Chicken - 1500

Sweet Potato Mash - N1000





Ask Eat.Drink.Lagos LXXIV

Every Tuesday, we answer reader questions. Sometimes, they can be a bit demanding.

Subject: Wedding Dinner

Message: Hi guys,
So, I’m planning my wedding and my fiancee and I aren’t wedding people. Where on the mainland can we host about 60 people to a buffet on a budget of 300k? Thanks
— T.M

FOLLY: I ate at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Festal once and it was pretty good. This was last year and I remember it being < 6000 for the buffet. I think that would work well within your budget. 

Subject: Birthday Buffet Dinner

Message: Hi Guys! Need some recommendations on good spots for a surprise birthday buffet dinner for about 25 people. Budget is 8k (max inclusive of drinks) per head and location is the island...VI preferably.
Hotel options are welcome as well.
Also the ambiance should be relaxing with music to unwind as well.

— K.U

NOSA: Does it really have to be a buffet?

FOLLY: Honestly, buffets are a terrible idea, and especially since your budget is N8000, you can do a lot better. My suggestions are Craft Gourmet, Crust & Cream, and La Provence.

NOSA: BL Restaurant, for me.

FOLLY: If you insist on the buffet however, Hotel Bon Voyage and The Four Points got you.


Subject: Birthday dinner

Message: Hey, do you know any restaurants that have private rooms or anything like that for groups? Thanks!
— E.A

FOLLY: Spice Route

NOSA: Ginger Tapas has a private room, but it's pretty small. If you have a small group, maybe. Pattaya also has one



Message: Hello, really like your blog. Very entertaining,especially the freestyle banter. Would be nice if you can have a “location” category i.e Lekki, Victoria Island/Mainland/Apapa.

— P.A

FOLLY: Working on it. 

Subject: Birthday dinner

Message: So im back here again cos my question wasn’t answered to my satisfaction cos I didn’t give enough information. I need ideas for not too pricey restaurants in lekki /VI for a birthday dinner for 20people. Budget is 150k . So per head should be like 6k 7k . Please reply as soon as possible. Thanks
— R.I.

NOSA: Oh, I remember your question.

Try Angle Villa

Got a question for us?