…And yes, you can sit with us.
As I’m sure you’re aware of by now that I love a good brunch and was quite thrilled when an invite to check out Fairmont The Norfolk’s Sunday Brunch came my way. Since it was an invite for two, I slyly created a competition on my friends’ group chat and the lucky winner got to join me. I know, it’s like EXTRA is my middle name.So last Sunday, my friend and I strolled into the Lord Delamare’s Terrace restaurant, located right by the entrance of the historic Fairmont the Norfolk hotel.
Steeped in history, Fairmont The Norfolk was built in 1904, playing a dominant role in the development of Nairobi. Over the years, the hotel has been refurbished to give it a modern touch while preserving its traditional remarkable charm.
Having proved to be a popular rendezvous since 1904, the Lord Delamere’s Terrace has been patronized by almost all the first European pioneer settlers and continues to one of the most revered landmarks in the city. Located in a now-glass enclosed patio, Lord Delamare’s Terrace is bright and airy with potted green plants. Vintage photos and beautiful artwork showing the hotel’s history hang on the walls as diners sit at wooden tables. I could easily imagine sipping a cup of tea there as I overlook the bustling city in the 1950s. Today, the hotel is more private with a verdant plant wall, separating it from the outside world.
Before we sat down, the lovely hostess, Catherine, took us around explaining each station to us and even introducing us to the head chef, a Greek man whose name I forgot to ask. With a wide range of dishes to choose from, we felt slightly overwhelmed at where to start from. You would be too because, at the entrance, we were greeted by a cocktail station, where bottomless Bloody Mary cocktails and fruity sangria cocktails are concocted.Then, there’s the Vitality juice station, with fresh fruit juices, including one of my faves – pineapple and mint.
Then, there was a soup station, with butternut soup that week, and a bread corner, filled with some scrummy baked bread and pastries.One of the unique stations was a Greek food station which had a Greek salad, a meat moussaka (a Greek dish made of minced lamb, eggplant and tomatoes, with cheese sauce on top), a kingfish dish and tiropita (a Greek cheese pie), among other dishes.
Next to it, was a mezze station with hummus, pita and the complete works including a meaty shawarma tower.There was also a seafood station and a charcuterie station, where someone would be ready to grill the sausages.
And of course, there was a salad bar and a decadent cheese station with all the fixings, including chutneys and olives.
Inside, the Tatu Restaurant had even more food stations. Besides an Indian food station that served daal, egg masala (curry) and biryani, there were also chips and mixed vegetables. We also found eggs florentine at one of the stations, which was rather unusual, because they usually feature on an a la carte menu. I like my eggs freshly cooked and if it’s in front of me, even better. There were also live cooking stations, making pizza and pasta and a carving station, barbecuing succulent pieces of meat.As we decided what to start with, I noticed the live afro-jazz band, Ricky Na Marafiki, playing some nice chill tunes. I had to start off by ordering a Bloody Mary, which was thankfully not too spicy and made me feel ‘healthy’ about indulging in all the dessert later.My friend got us some hummus, tzatziki (Greek yogurt dip), and pita to share. I tried some tiropita cheese pie as she had some fish and Greek salad. She enjoyed her fish but thought the salad was average. We jointly agreed that the dips and pita were delicious. My tiropita cheese pie was oh-so-flaky and the herby feta filling was rich, velvety soft and simply moreish! And it was so delicious that in our excitement, we forgot to take a photo of it.
Since we weren’t in the mood for Indian food or pasta, we picked up some pizza. While the Margherita pizza with cherry tomatoes and basil, I believe that it may have been sitting out for a while, despite being promised to be fresh. Perhaps, smaller pizza sizes would allow diners to enjoy customized pizzas on their own, without wasting it.By then, I was stuffed and was already dreaming of dessert. With two, yes TWO, counters for dessert, we were spoiled for choice. One counter had an array of fresh fruit platters, individual portions of cakes, tarts and cookies, while the other had hot and cold treats, including churros, cheesecakes, and a live crepe station. So, my friend and I decided to divide and conquer aiming to try a little bit of everything.
I got a tiramisu, a pink macaron with chocolate frosting and a mini mason-jar filled with pistachio mousse and cherry compote. They were all so delectable and I was seriously considering replenishing my dessert plate, but I was quite full and still had to try the crepes.Garnished with coconut shreds and chocolate shavings, my friend chose to enjoy her freshly-made crepes with the homemade blueberry jam. These were lovely, but they did not bring any wow factor.Since I had tried a little bit of almost everything vegetarian, except the Indian food, I wrapped up our brunch with a freshly brewed cappuccino. I thoroughly enjoyed everything I ate and the service was pleasant. Nevertheless, I wish there were more choices for vegetarians, such as a live egg station or a waffle bar. Can you tell I take brunch very seriously?
Just for Ksh. 3950/-, you can enjoy a range of local and international cuisines with live music from 12:30PM to 4PM every Sunday at the iconic Fairmont The Norfolk. It’s definitely an amazing way to celebrate a special occasion, a loved one or just to treat yourself.
Photos, unless stated otherwise, are by Jamila Kadernani