After it’s bold introduction last year in the very first issue of Yummy Magazine, Caramel Restaurant and Lounge has been getting a lot of buzz. Some of this buzz has been around fear of the price tag. But thanks to #NRW2015, a lot of us are discovering that this ritzy restaurant on the 2nd floor of ABC Place on Waiyaki Way is a lot more accessible than we thought.
Yesterday I sampled the #NRW2015 menu at Caramel and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised by the flavors, style and plating.
As starters, patrons are given a choice of the Seared Beef Carpaccio with capers, shaved permesan and truffle oil, a Veggie Roll with sushi rice, avocado, mango, carrots and cuccumber or the Caramel Mac and Cheese.
With regards to the carpaccio, I had never eaten raw beef before. So you can imagine my skepticism while the dish was being explained to me. But two slices in, I was hooked. I particularly liked the punchy citrus flavors. An excellent choice of starter this, because it sets a high expectation for the rest of the meal to come.
The other starter was the Mac and Cheese bars with truffle oil and a side serving of 3 cheese dipping sauce. Mac and Cheese is probably the world’s most generic comfort food, but Caramel have put an interesting spin on theirs by placing the mac and cheese in these fried bars.
The main course was either the the Marinated Grilled Chicken served with baby spinach and parsnip puree or the Chinese Chicken Salad.
As a certified carnivore, I approve of the Marinated Grilled Chicken. I’m a bit of a messy eater – I prefer to drag my slices of chicken through the puree and sauce before eating. The explosion of flavors in my mouth was well worth feeling self conscious about eating appropriately in a fine dining establishment.
The other option for a main course was the Chinese Chicken Salad with clementines, cashews and honey mustard dressing.
I’m not really a salad guy, but this salad had a lot of flavor. The honey mustard dressing dressing definitely made an impact. The use of cashews was an excellent way to add flavor as well. And of course, it had chicken bits, which I was shamelessly pushing the greens aside to get to. Despite my aversion to salads, I found this salad pretty good.
The dessert was an option of Raspberry Cheesecake or Mango, Lime and Berry Sorbet.
Now, I’m a sweet tooth. I like candy. But there is a such thing as “too sweet” and the syrup and raspberries in the cheesecake dessert made it a tad too sweet for me. The cheesecake itself was a square cut from the clouds of heaven. Perfect texture and moist crust.
The mango and lime sorbet with fresh berries and chocolate was the dessert to have. Because it’s basically flavored ice shavings, sorbet is not as sweet as ice cream but it has a powerfully satisfying taste for sweet tooth cravings all the same. If I had to choose between the the sorbet and the cheesecake, I would go with the sorbet.
And of course, the meal came with complimentary drinks. A Magnum cocktail for me and a Passion Cruz Dawa for my dining partner.
Take advantage of Nairobi Restaurant Week and enjoy a pocket friendly introduction to Caramel. But better do it soon.
Make your booking on EatOut Kenya today.