Nairobi, Kenya: Best places to eat - chef Chris Wade's picks



CHRIS WADE, chef, Steak Ministry Bar & Grill

Glen Waverley in Melbourne's south-east is home to Steak Ministry Bar & Grill where chef Chris Wade oversees the chargrilling. Wade, who has worked with Marco Pierre White, Gordon Ramsay and Curtis Stone, recently toured parts of Africa, along with other food producers, promoting Australian produce on a mission for the Australian Trade and Investment Commission and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. See


The best place for breakfast in Nairobi is Le Grenier a Pain Bakery, a real gem in this vibrant city. They make a mean mandazi, a sweet Kenyan doughnut pillow. They also have very talented baristas making great coffee, which are few and far between in East Africa. Speaking of coffee, on a recent trip through Nairobi, I got stuck overnight at the airport. l ended up at a stunning coffee shop, Bean Plant, where I was introduced to Kenyan Coffee, which is some of the tastiest and highest rated on the world quality scale. It's rich and robust with a deep smooth flavour that helped me tremendously that long morning. See See and


Dining at the famous Carnivore restaurant, run by the high-end Tamarind Group, is a real experience. With a big coal pit and rotisserie smoking all day, it's an absolute treat for meat-lovers. After tasting all that was on offer, including ostrich, crocodile and the smooth and creamy ox balls Nyama Choma-style, you have to wash it down with a Kenyan dawa (the Swahili word for "medicine"). It's a local drink made from vodka, lime juice and local honey, finished with a "dawa stick" to stir your honey and ice cubes. See


Everywhere in Kenya you can find a good samosa. It was my go-to food on the menus I encountered. At the Serena Nairobi Hotel (a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World) as I sat down at lunch time by the pool, checking my menus and place list for that evening's pop-up dinner, I yet again ordered this snack and had my favourite samosa of the trip. It was filled with a spicy beef mixture featuring cumin and coriander. See


Dinner at Seven Grill in Nairobi is a real eye-opener to the quality of local seafood. Chef Kiran Jethwa has been able to get the best because of his long-standing relationships with his local suppliers. The amazing mud crabs, fresh octopus and huge fish are made all the more delicious with Kiran's modern culinary thinking. Coupled with an amazing service team, that restaurant is always buzzing. See


We went for late night snacks at a fantastic rooftop bar in Karen, called J's. They have a huge range of modern Kenyan tapas, from scotch eggs, to grilled calamari and the always-present crowd favourite, spicy chicken wings. See