The Star (Nairobi)

10 January 2013

Kenya: The Bare Truth About Naked Pizza

The Christmas cheer has likely left many of us feeling fat or bloated thanks to the culinary excesses of the season. Thus for those of us wanting to shed that extra kilo (or ten!), Naked Pizza is a calorie conscious but still tasty option with its blend of delicious whole food ingredients often preferred by health-conscious diners.

No sugar is added to the pizza base or the sauce and neither is the pizza made with hydrogenated oils or preservatives. Instead, the crust is made with a combination of 10 grains, blue agave fiber and probiotics which are good for digestion.

I tried the 'Sonoran' pizza which has red onion, chicken, corn and mushroom as its topping - its a delicious pizza with a herb-y, au naturale taste that gives one the feeling that they are eating something really healthy.

I prefer my pizza thin-crusted but chunky in its toppings so the sonoran I ate could have used more chicken pieces. Subsequently, if you're a meat lover like I am, you're better off trying the 'Farmvil' pizza which has pepperoni, sausage, hamburger and turkey ham or the 'Omnivore' variety which has pepperoni, hamburger, turkey ham as well as bell pepper, mushroom and olives.

The 'Ragin Cajun' also sounds enticing with its sausage, chicken, garlic, bell pepper and red onion topping. The thin-crusted option at Naked Pizza is really 'Skinny' so you might want to stick to the 'Original' crust option if you're really hungry. The vegetarian options include 'Greenhouse' pizza which is made with red onion, tomato, bell pepper, black olive and mushroom.

Naked Pizza is a franchise more popular in the US but gradually expanding onto other continents. I first encountered it while in Dubai where it goes by its culturally sensitive alter ego 'N_K_D' Pizza. Founded in New Orleans, Naked Pizza has gained popularity largely through social media and has been quoted by the New York Times as one of 11 companies to follow on twitter.

As such, its not surprising that its premise on Fedha Plaza on Mpaka Road, Westlands is more often than not crowded by the many diners hungry for a hot pizza.

Incidentally, for those who love piping hot food, Naked Pizza is served hot and its temperature maintained in a special oven for those who like to order in advance before pick up.

Delivery is at cost of Sh100 within Westlands, Parklands, Spring Valley, Kitusuri and other areas within the delivery zone. Sadly, Naked Pizza Kenya currently does not deliver to Hurlingham, or along Ngong Road and other areas to maintain the integrity of their products which, according to management, is prepared within 10 minutes and delivered within 15 minutes within the delivery zone. However, plans are underway to open three to four more outlets over the course of the year.

Additionally, at the existing outlet, the dough is hand-rolled and the outlet can produce up to 350 pizzas per hour. An alarm is sounded every two hours to alert the staff to wash everything used to prepare the food. White chopping boards are reserved for cutting vegetables while the red boards are are for meats.

Naked Pizza Kenya is the first of its kind with seating to suit the interests of the Kenyan market and as such has a 20-seating capacity indoors and another 20 on the terrace outdoors. A small pizza (23cm) costs Sh650, a medium one (28cm) Sh850 and a large one (33cm) Sh1,000.

For further inquiries call 0707 111 888

Restaurant: Naked Pizza

Location: Fedha Plaza, Mpaka Road, Westlands in Nairobi

Reviewed by: Pauline Odhiambo

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