Nairobi Restaurant Week is here! Nairobi Restaurant Week is here!
I can almost hear the chants of all you excited foodies. #NRW2016 is a food-lovers Christmas. I probably won’t sleep well on Wednesday night in anticipation for the beginning of NRW on Thursday. My restaurant reservations were all made last week so now I’m sitting back and playing the waiting game till January 28th. If you’re reading this and you haven’t made your reservations yet, PLEASE STOP READING. Round the troops. Pick up your phone. Dial that restaurant you’ve always wanted to visit. And MAKE A RESERVATION.
A lot of the popular restaurants will be fully booked by the time next week comes around, especially if you’re trying to find a table for a big party.
I’m getting ahead of myself again aren’t I?
Okay let’s back track…
What: Nairobi Restaurant Week 2016. Over 50 participating restaurants with fixed priced three course menus of either ksh 1,500 or ksh 2,500. Some restaurants are also offering two course lunch menus at ksh 1,000 or ksh 1,800. Full list of participating restaurants and menus available here.
When: January 28th – February 7th 2016
For more information on sponsors, offers, and to WIN A TRIP TO DUBAI check out EatOut Kenya’s website.
Great. Now that that’s sorted, let’s talk about the #NRW2016 press launch that was last week Thursday at Brew Bistro Rooftop. Brew Rooftop was a fantastic venue for the event, lots of open air and space. In case you missed it on Snapchat, here’s a rundown of the event.
Once everyone arrived, we started the event with a few introductory speeches from Michelle, the General Manager of EatOut and Soraiya of The Wine Shop.
The Wine Shop is the official distributor of Nederburg wines who are the title sponsors of Nairobi Restaurant Week. Most restaurants (except for the ones that don’t serve alcohol) participating in restaurant week will have Nederbug wine pairings for their menus!
Michelle spoke a little bit about restaurant week and then the big news came… We were going to have the opportunity to win big with Moyo Holidays during the press launch. We started with a fun plating activity with Chef Sanchez, the head chef of the Brew Bistros and The Wine Shop. Three volunteers plated the appetizer, main, and dessert course that would be available at The Wine Shop, Brew Bistro, and Brew Bistro Rooftop respectively.
I jumped at the opportunity to plate with Chef Sanchez so I got to make an Eton Mess that’s on the Brew Bistro Rooftop restaurant week menu. We made a mango Eton Mess which has light, smooth, and fluffy mango mousse with sweet and crunchy meringue and bright tart fresh fruit.
Up next, we blind tasted four Nederbug wines, two whites and two reds. The winner of the blind tasting would get a roundtrip flight to a local destination with Moyo Holiday. I thought my past experience doing a blind tasting was sure to be beneficial in winning this prize, but I had some tough competition.
Above from top left clockwise: Fred of EatOut Kenya, Jay of JayTakeAPic, Kaluhi of Kaluhi’s Kitchen
Once everyone had had an opportunity to taste the wines, Soraiya announced the winning order of wines we tasted…. I had done it! I WON!
But it wasn’t that easy. It’s never that easy. About seven other people had gotten the correct answers so there was a random draw of all the winners’ names out of a hat to pick the two final winners. In the end, Muthoni Muchiri and Doreen Wainaina ended up taking home the prize. 🙂
Lastly, the head bartender at the Brew Bistros, seasoned mixologist Benu showed us how to make the three Amarula cocktails that are on offer during restaurant week: Mocharula, Amarula Martini and On The Rocks. After which, three volunteers stood the chance to win another roundtrip flight courtesy of Moyo by creating Amarula cocktails with mystery ingredients in just two minutes. If you know me and my love for shows like Top Chef, Chopped, and Master Chef, you KNOW I was excited for this challenge.
The three volunteers were: Adrian of Nairobi Design Week, Sheila Rabala of Rabala’s Delights, and Darshani Haria of Cupcakes To Curry
They got some serious curve ball ingredients such as tabasco and passion fruit in their mystery boxes but each contestant successfully completed their cocktail in just two minutes! The final drinks were judged by Benu, Mikul Shah (the Director of EatOut Kenya) and Patricia Kihoro (the Amarula brand ambassador).
In the end, Sheila’s cocktail came out on top and she won roundtrip flights! Sheila, if you’re reading this, you know who’s a great travel companion?! 😉 (call me).
The event was honestly so much fun, one of the best press launches I’ve ever been to (I’ve only been to two, this one included). It was filled with people from different media houses, sponsors of Nairobi Restaurant Week, bloggers, and media personalities.
As you can tell, I’m hype. I hope you are too. So, where will you be dining during #NRW2016? Let me know below! 🙂
All photos by J. Mwai Photography