If you’ve been following me for a while now, then you know that I think Sunday brunch should be a necessity. So, when I got an invite asking me to check out the Sunday brunch at the Flame Tree Restaurant at the historic Sarova Panafric Hotel, I was excited and asked Diva to join me for a fun sisters-only brunch.
Sarova Panafric boasts of a rich history. When the quest for Africa’s independence raged in the 1960s, the hotel hosted many of the continent’s nationalists under the umbrella of Pan Africanism, hence the name, Panafric.
We headed straight to the Flame Tree Restaurant after arriving at the hotel. Upon entering the restaurant, a lovely hostess sat us down by the large windows. The interior was dark due to the wooden furnishings and booths which gave off cozy vibes.The server took us through the brunch which served a large variety of hot and cold dishes. Inside the restaurant was a smoothie bar, a salad bar, a charcuterie bar and a cheese and condiments selection. There was this black charcoal-infused hard cheese that caught my eye. There was also a selection of homemade bread and pastries. From the raw bar, a selection of oysters, freshly shucked lobster tails, marinated prawns, steamed mussels, poached, cured and smoked salmon was waiting to be devoured.
Oh, and not to forget, I also spotted freshly-made sushi, including a delicious vegetarian selection.As we were guided outside to the hot food carts set in the verdant garden, we passed a live jazz band playing some delightful tunes and a kid’s playing area. The hot food stations included a wide variety of cuisines ranging from Lebanese to Kenyan to pan Asian cuisines. The Lebanese station had Arabic-inspired dishes such as hummus and pita. The Kenyan station had several dishes such as steak and cassava dishes, while the pan Asian station offered Tibetan dumplings (momos) among other Asian dishes. Of course, there was an Indian food stand serving up various dishes including paneer, tawa prawns, chicken curry, daal makhani and piping hot naan. And not to forget, there was the chef’s celebrated Sunday roast carving station which included roast quail, tea smoked pork loin, among other meaty goodness.
As Diva and I checked all the food out, the server helped me plate my food as Diva couldn’t have done both our plates at once. I really appreciated their helpful gestures.
As we ate, we were served a welcome drink: Peach Bellini, a luscious sparkling fruity cocktail.They even placed a warm bread basket on the table. Mmm…fresh bread!
We got a Caprese salad and some spinach and cheese pastries, hummus and baba ghanoush from the Lebanese stand. I picked up some black cheese to sample and we also got some sushi. The Caprese salad was alright, though I wished the mozzarella was fresher. The spinach and cheese pastry was pleasant but I didn’t enjoy the black cheese, which had bitter tones, which even the homemade jams weren’t helping to elevate. The selection of vegetarian sushi included three pieces with varied fillings. The vegetarian dynamite was a fave due to the spicy flavors. They were all really scrumptious!Not quite appetized by the food, we decided to keep it light and head for dessert, which was served by the salad bar and also in a whole separate room. The delectable treats included hot desserts such as gulab jamun, coconut pudding and croissants. There was also a selection of tarts, mousses and cakes just alluring everyone.Diva and I tried the coconut pudding, which was warm and soul-soothing, alongside some brownies, cakes and mousse. We wish we could have tried everything!
Now happily full, we wrapped up the brunch with a freshly brewed cappuccino.
The Flame Tree Sunday Brunch runs from 12:30PM to 4PM for Ksh. 3500/- per person and children below six years eat for free, while it’s Ksh. 1750/- for children between 6-12 years. And just for an extra Ksh. 999/- you get free-flowing drinks, which include beers, mojitos and prosecco.Before I wrap up, I must mention how wonderful and friendly the staff were, from the warm chefs who’d answer our questions with ease to the servers who just didn’t help serve me from the buffet but also cut my straw for me.
So, with brilliant service, an array of international dishes to choose from and relaxing music, Sarova Panafric’s Flame Tree Sunday Brunch is ideal for both friends and families alike, as there’s something for everyone. Being a seasoned bruncher, I missed the usual brunch fare of eggs, waffles and pancakes, but I appreciated the change at The Flame Tree Sunday Brunch.
Disclosure: Our meals were complimentary, courtesy of Sarova Panafric Hotel. However, all views and opinions are entirely my own.
Photos by Diva Shah