The Story of Mayalu

The name came to us in two parts. First, Maya, the name of my incredible mom, evokes the wisdom and nurturing spirit that she passed down to us. Lulu, a nickname we lovingly gave to my daughter Nawami, captures her bubbly and vibrant essence. One fateful day, we realized the magic that happens when you blend these two names together: Mayalu.


In our native language of Nepali, “Mayalu” translates to ‘beloved’ or ‘sweetheart,’ and we couldn’t think of a more fitting term to encapsulate our vision. We want Mayalu to be more than just a name; we want it to be a sanctuary where people can discover the deep-rooted love, connection, and sense of belonging that we were fortunate enough to experience in our homeland.


Just like the mountains that have stood tall for ages, our traditions and bonds stand the test of time. And now, through Mayalu, we hope to share that warmth and inclusiveness with you.


Welcome to our little corner of the world, where every moment spent is a step closer to feeling like a beloved part of our extended family.

Local Ingredients, Global Flavors

As owners, we don’t drink coffee regularly, but we are intentional about creating a space in our vibrant Southside neighborhood that connects our Des Moines neighbors and visitors with our Nepali value and culture of love and belonging.

To capture the essence of our journey, we collaborated with a youth artist from East High School who painted a mural on our wall that represents the fusion of our past and present. This artwork symbolizes the love and dedication we put into every aspect of our coffee shop, as well as our commitment to creating a welcoming and inclusive community space.

Whether you’re a coffee enthusiast or prefer some warm chiya (or chai or tea) with a bite of samosa, we invite you to visit us, share stories, make new connections, and savor the flavors. So, when you visit our shop, take a moment to enjoy the enticing aroma of freshly brewed coffee, admire the captivating mural, and see if this is a place where you feel loved and belonged.