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One restaurant, meals from three worlds

Located in Lavington, Nairobi, Toranji Restaurant offers Turkish, Persian and Italian dishes with a children’s corner where kids are encouraged to help make their own meals

Faith Kyomukama @martkinel

Sunday afternoons are better spent with friends and family, not forgetting eating good food and enjoying drink or two. Anyway, I had heard about Toranj Restaurant through a friend but what actually made me visit this particular restaurant was the three different cuisines from different countries I was told are offered at the restaurant.

Located on James Gichuru Road in the surburbs of Lavington, Toranji Restaurant offers Turkish, Persian and Italian dishes. The Arabic name of the restaurant and its logo also ignited a sense of adventure for me as a foodie and I really had to experience this unique eatery. Basically, variety is what I look for when it comes to restaurant menus and here I found that balance.

We arrived at the restaurant and were greeted by staff on entry. We requested them to let us choose our own table. The outdoor was our choice since we wanted a bit of fresh air and some sunlight.

The place was fairly full, but not overcrowded given that it was Sunday afternoon and you would not expect otherwise. Once we settled down, we immediately asked for chilled red wine but, unfortunately, Toranj does not sell alcoholic drinks. So we each opted to for fresh orange squeeze instead. The menu had a great variety of choices from Persian, Turkish and Italian meals.

A no-alcohol restaurant, Toranji serves Middle East and Italian cuisines. Photo/FAITH KYOUMUKAMA

The difference between the Persian and Turkish is the type of grill used to cook the meats. I went for a Turkish choice and that’s the grilled chicken shawarma served with French fries and on the side onions and vegetable salad.

This dish cost about Sh1,100. The waiter took our order and in 10 minutes flat we already had our meal on the table. The serving was generously good; actually, the waiter had warned me that I might not manage to eat half the plate and he was right. I did not have space for any more food for the rest of that Sunday.

My friend had opted for Beef shish kebab, which is also Turkish, but consists of broiled beef cubes cooked on skewers and delicately marinated in Turkish spices. Served with fries and grilled vegetables, the kebabs were succulent.

Cooked just right, my partner said. Personally, I would recommend the lamb kebab over the beef and chicken but that is a matter of individual taste. Their menu also offers pizza of different flavours and there’s a children’s meal section.

What impressed me most was how they engage with children when making the kiddie pizzas. The kids are actually invited to wear little aprons and they can choose the toppings they want for their pizzas. In contrast, many restaurants do not offer kiddie meals at kiddie prices lacking in their menus, forcing parents to choose servings meant for grown ups.

This becomes pricy, since you have to pay for adult plates and the kids end up wasting the food. Next time we will probably try out the Persian or Italian dishes they offer. An overall review of Toranj that impressed me was their prompt service. The food was good also you get good value for money.

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