Capital FM (Nairobi)

Kenya: Restaurant Review - Royal Kitchen On Westlands Road

A simply decorated interior and an understated spacious terrace feel just like what a restaurant in an "Inn" should. Our refreshing juices arrived in record time - from ordering to sipping only 3 minutes - the prompt service was startling, but definitely appreciated.

The menu's expansive choices reflect Royal Kitchen's determination to democratize good food. The Royal Kitchen is a multi-cuisine restaurant within The Pride Inn and offers one of the most extensive menus Lifestyle has seen in Nairobi, with over 400 à-la-carte items. Some would frown upon Royal Kitchen's massive menu - large menus create several problems within an operation - but in this case, most will smile. The sub-menus within the thickly-bounded text surprisingly make it easy to navigate between Chinese, Indian, Continental and even house Barbecue specialties.

There were the Tandoori Tiger Prawns cooked in the Chef's special tandoor massala (Sh 1160), which we started eating primly with our forks and knives until any facade of politeness was abandoned and they became finger food - ultimate satisfaction. As were a generous plate of juicy mushrooms brightly marinated with onions and capsicum, and roasted in the tandoor to perfection (Sh 610).

From elsewhere on the Indian menu, the tender, chewy and crispy Butter and Chili Naans went well with the Murg Mussallam's half chicken stewed in a coconut sauce (Sh 900), which is something you need when autumn has suddenly moved to the cold hard realities of winter. The warmth from the well-cooked spices will surely keep any soul warm.

Best of all: the Balti Chicken Curry (Sh 770) and its chicken cubes fried until golden and then slowly cooked in a pungent ginger and garlic paste. Eat it with a close friend. The Malai Kofta (Sh 640) was a brilliant vegetarian dish with stuffed potatoes and dried fruits, cooked with crunchy cashew nuts in a creamy sauce resulting in very well-balanced flavours.

This Lifestyle's trip to Royal Kitchen primarily focused on its Indian menu, but we left feeling satisfied without the itis - drowsy feelings from eating an overly rich meal full of spices and fattening additives - a reason to comeback just for that. However, the true brilliance of Royal Kitchen is their ability to expand the multi-cuisine idea - plates of rich classic dishes matched with fair prices - without losing a sense of individual identity. That will work, and it will keep on working

About SUSAN WONG

Susan Wong is a resident photographer, writer, radio presenter and full-time adventurer at Capital FM

SUSAN WONG has written 266 posts.

@SusanLUCKYWong

Malai Kofta: vegetarian dish with stuffed potatoes and dried fruits, cooked with crunchy cashew nuts in a creamy sauce

Tandoori mushrooms brightly marinated with onions and capsicum, and roasted in the tandoor

Photos continued on next page

Murg Mussallam: half chicken stewed in a coconut sauce

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