Backyard Wants to be Your New Favorite Restaurant in Lagos
NOSA: I think we were one of the first people to follow these guys on Instagram. I was creeping through the La Taverna Chef's page and noticed he liked one of their pictures...
...typing that sounds a lot weirder than it sounded in my head. Oh well, #CreepLife. I spotted the physical location while driving down Musa Yaradua about a week ago.
FOLLY: Musa Yaradua is really popping as a restaurant strip in VI and all this has happened over the past two to three years. This street has Crust & Cream, Pizza-Riah, La Brioche, Basilico, Mansilla till they closed down or moved away, and now Backyard has opened on the same road.
NOSA: There's another one, but it looks dodgy so perhaps we shouldn't add that to this list.
FOLLY: If I had to describe Backyard in one word, it would be "thoughtful".
NOSA: A bit like the owners who kept checking in on us throughout our meal. What if our cover is blown and they knew we were Eat.Drink.Lagos?
FOLLY: Yes! The service was impressive and everything about the space is so intentional.
NOSA: Our waiter, Charles, was really helpful.
FOLLY: There's both indoor and outdoor seating at the restaurant. Outdoor is your standard table/lounge style set up. Inside you have both bench style seating and regular height tables.
NOSA: Oh, I really loved the furniture. I wish I got decent pictures of it.
The menu is really interesting and I mean that in a good way. If I ever attended a Mediterranean BBQ, I'm pretty sure the menu would look just like this.
FOLLY: Their drinks menu is pretty interesting because they have the standard cocktails you find in most Lagos restaurants like your margarita, Moscow mule, mojito and also some interesting twists. I wanted to try something new and not my usual mojito, I order a mojito everywhere, even at The Rock.
So my choice was the Sue's Elixir. The base spirit is gin, which isn't something I'd normally like. I'm definitely not a gin and tonic gal, but like I said, the spirit of trying something new entered me. The drink is layered so the pedestrian in me had already tried to drink it without mixing before the waiter quickly came to tell me that I needed to stir it before drinking.
NOSA: Like a razz babe.
FOLLY: Once I mixed it, it was a lot sweeter. I liked that the bartender wasn't overly generous with the strawberry syrup to the point that it was sickening. It was just enough to take the gin from stiff to subtle.
NOSA: The bartender, Franklin, was poached from Spice Route and I'm guessing he was the only good one because the last time I went to Spice Route, the drinks were a shambles. But that was a long time ago so maybe it doesn't hold.
For my drink, I got the Lynchburg Lemonade - Jack Daniels, Triple Sec, Sour Mix, and 7up. Incredibly delicious, if you couldn't tell from the contents.
Oh, and I really wanted to steal that Hennessy straw
(FUN FACT - The Jack Daniels HQ is in Lynchburg, TN)
FOLLY: Their menu is a mishmash of BBQ items, all with a middle eastern twist. I hadn't eaten all day so I arrived at Backyard with a mission to eat it all. Let me quickly run through everything we ordered: Fish Suya, Teriyaki Chicken, Hummus, Mediterranean Chicken Skewers, Ginger & Honey Beef Skewers, Pesto Halloumi Skewers, and the Steak Sandwich.
Yeah, it was a lot.
NOSA: I'm still recovering from ODing on seafood in Zanzibar so we tried to keep the seafood to a minimum, but Folly wanted the fish suya.
FOLLY: And a great choice, it was. The fish suya was my absolute favorite of the appetizers. The skin was delicately crusted and very flavorful. The inside was still white, soft and flaky.
NOSA: They went with barracuda and it was the perfect fit. Flawless execution.
FOLLY: Close second was the teriyaki chicken tenders. Backyard has better teriyaki sauce than some Japanese restaurants in Lagos.
NOSA: ...we only have like 3 of those so it's like being the short-sighted man in the land of the blind.
FOLLY: It was very thick and sticky and coated every single corner of the chicken.
NOSA: The teriyaki was a little too much for me. Not way too much, just a little. Like, after a couple of bites, it got too much for me.
I think my favorite of the lot was the beef skewer. The ginger on it worked so so well for me.
FOLLY: The white wine vinegar that it was marinated in also came through and I appreciated that.
FOLLY: The only two things that were meh of the lot were the chicken skewer because it was boring and the spices were 'minimalistic', and the halloumi because it was missing its pesto.
NOSA: Now, the halloumi skewer wasn't the one for me, but halloumi, by itself, might be. This was my first experience with it and it tasted way better than I thought it would.
FOLLY: The steak sandwich was very reminiscent of a Philly Cheesesteak.
NOSA: If it looks and tastes like a cheesesteak, it must be a cheeesesteak.
FOLLY: It had everything: the cheese, green peppers, mushroom, and steak. The only difference is that this was served in a baguette as opposed to a sub. This is a worthy competitor to RSVP's steak sandwich for a fraction of the cost.
NOSA: Competitor? They're playing in different leagues. This is so much better. The steak sandwich is up there with the PhillyGidiCheesesteak at BBQ & Cravings. Easily a top 10 sandwich in Lagos (Lagos has shit sandwiches so indulge me)
FOLLY: I absolutely loved the Backyard. I can't wait to go back and literally eat our way through their entire menu.
NOSA: This is my new favorite place in Lagos. I can't remember the last time I liked a place so much on my first visit. I am so sure their burger is delicious and I must confirm it.
Fish Suya - N1200
Steak Sandwich - N4500
Ginger & Honey Skewer - N1000
Pesto Halloumi Skewer - N1450
Mediterranean Chicken Skewer - N900
They have a pretty decent parking lot.