31 July 2011

Anvil Pub

Former expat, queen of snark, and determined vegetarian, Rachel B., recently returned to the motherland, Dallas, Texas, where she shares her initial impressions of the new bar and eatery on the scene, Anvil Pub.  

For those of you not intimately familiar with Dallas' foodie scene, it's like this: shopping and eating are king in this town and new restaurants, bars, and clubs open and close at an astounding speed as the locals rave and then, 30 minutes later, find a new hotspot to frequent until they once again grow bored. Entrepreneurial restauranteurs must seek the happy medium of becoming the neighborhood hang out as well wooing hipsters to a trendy new locale. It's a status seldom achieved and many promising and delicious start ups fall by the wayside in a sad collection of once celebrated venues now forgotten. Read on as Rachel details her experience and pronounces Anvil a temporary success:

29 July 2011

Nairobi Nightlife Needs You!

If you like to eat, drink, and be merry and want to tell the world what you liked or didn't like about a particular restaurant/bar/club or you just want to promote your favorite little hole in the wall, now could be your chance.  Your Nairobi Nightlife Guru, as one friend nicknamed me, is looking for people interested in either writing a one time review or someone who would like to join the foodie clan as a regular contributor.  As much as I enjoy going out it would be next to impossible for me to individually review every single venue Nairobi has to offer and I'm sure that my readers would love perspectives and endorsements from people other than just little old me.

There's no compensation involved, just fun times surrounded by (hopefully) good food. Reviewed locations don't have to be in Nairobi since the blog also includes a travel section.  So get eating and feel free to submit reviews on places you think readers would like to visit in your town or highlight the must-go place you seek out every time you visit a certain city. 

If you like to write and this sounds like something you'd like to partake in, email me at nairobinightlife(at)gmail(dot)com.  Please include your name, a small background on yourself so we can introduce you to our readers, and your review.  There are no rules dictating the content of the submissions, but they must include the name and location of the venue and a general idea of the price range.  Attach related photos (make sure you have permission to post them) along with credits.

Disclaimers: Guest posts become the property of Nairobi Nightlife blog.  We will always credit you as the author and source of the post with your name and links to your blog, Twitter, etc. as directed, but if your review is posted on the blog it becomes ours to reproduce elsewhere.  We also reserve the right to edit, revise, or simply not post as we see fit.  Posts can't have been published/posted elsewhere.

27 July 2011

Waterfront Bar and Restaurant

My colleague and I went to Dar es Salaam for a weekend of civilization away from the small Tanzanian village where we were staying. On our last night there we tried to go to dinner at a local nyama choma joint which we discovered was closed on Mondays so we went to the only other restaurant we knew in the area that had been recommended by her friend; Waterfront. 

Location: It's located in Slipway shopping center next to the Double Tree Hilton hotel in Masaki on the peninsula.
Price: Entrees seemed to range anywhere from 8000-25,000 TZS.  Drinks were a bit pricey for what I've seen reflected in other establishments throughout Tanzania; they were more indicative of Nairobi prices with house wine costing 5,000 TZS. 
Atmosphere: The shopping center is Village Market-esque with upscale stores overlooking the ocean. There are several restaurants inside; Waterfront is located in the back directly over the water.

26 July 2011

La Salumeria

Fellow foodie, frequent dining companion, and drinking buddy, Cocktail Contessa, writes about one of our favorite (and conveniently located) Italian joints in Nairobi: 

One of my favorite culinary discoveries since first arriving in Nairobi two months ago has been a little Italian joint by the name of Salumeria, located dangerously close to my flat on Gitanga Rd. It's dim candlelit atmosphere and inside/outside seating options offers the perfect environment for both casual indulgence and/or emotional overeating, depending on your state of mind. Start off with a litre/half litre carafe of the house red (again, depending on your emotional state of mind) while gorging yourself on the bread basket, which comes with an assortment of slightly undercooked and slightly overcooked options. According to our Nairobi Nightlife Guru, Micah, "The squishy bread is the best, the hard bread sucks. It's like a rock." I have to agree, although I was forced to consume large quantities of the hard stuff due to Micah's aggressive nature when it comes to bread baskets. Drowning it in oil helps.

20 July 2011

Local Moshi Lunch Spots

While working in Moshi my work colleague and I both wanted to find affordable options for lunch so each day we walked around town and picked a small local place to try.  Here's what we found:

Name: Chrisburger / Club Alberto
Location: On Kibo Road next door to the Impala Coach office just near the clock tower roundabout
Price: Their fast food menu is quite affordable.  Samosas are 500 TZS each; veg rice is 1500 TZS; and chai masala is 1000 TZS.
Atmosphere: the covered patio is enclosed with greenery and is a nice place to relax over lunch. Apparently it doubles as a bar/club in the evenings.

The service here is just as slow, if not slower, than most restaurants in Kenya. They forgot to charge us for our samosas one day and when we returned several days later for morning tea they hit us up for the amount. In general I find that very unprofessional since it was their mistake and it's not like they gave us a written bill in the first place so they couldn't show that we hadn't paid. However, I was worried the money had come out of the waitress' own pocket so we didn't comment.  

13 July 2011

Indoitaliano: Updated

To combat the boredom of cooking dinner sans electricity in our new rural locale about 45 minutes outside of Moshi, my work colleague and I stayed in town after work one evening to grab a bite to eat and a drink. We hadn't been in Tanzania long so we just kind of wandered down one of the main roads and asked around for this restaurant since one of her friends had recommended we try it. We finally found it just off a side street near the backpackers hotel.

Location: Corner of New Street and School Street near the Buffalo Hotel
Price: approximately 800-1000 TZS per main dish; 2500 TZS for local beer
Atmosphere: very expat-y: when we arrived there was one large table of expats with a few tables of locals, but by the time we left around 7:30 it was expat central up in there. Randomly, it is also one of the only places I have ever seen a mzungu waitress.

08 July 2011

Seven Seafood and Grill: Updated

This was my third visit to Seven but my first time for dinner. Previously I had only sampled their drink selection. Their dinner options had always looked a bit pricey for what you get and I'd been told that their lunch menu is a better value but the desire to celebrate my birthday on 7/7 at Seven (at 7pm) was too hard to resist. (I'm a sucker for the cutesy factor.)

Location: ABC Place (corner of James Gichuru and Waiyaki Way) next to Mercury
Price: definitely one of the pricier joints in town. As the birthday girl I wasn't allowed to pay for my meal, much less see the bill, but from what I heard the total for a table of 14 ended up somewhere between 55-60,000 KSH (approximately $611-667 USD).
Atmosphere: They have a small area for outdoor seating but even inside the whole restaurant feels very open.  It's got a very hip, modern feel about it.