Almost each time I find myself in Thika town, I am either visiting my family or en route to someplace. If you don’t know, Thika town is a happening city. It has grown over time, from an agriculture hub once named the pineapple town after the Delmonte plantations, to an industry town once named Birmigham of Kenya after the manufacturing city of Britain.
Today, the town is becoming a dormitory for Nairobi City with various beautiful tourist attractions such as Chania Falls and Thika Falls in the town and Fourteen Falls and Mt Kilimambogo 15km away. The town also offers tons of dining options in its many hotels and growing number of restaurants.
I thought I knew the town well until I saw a recent post on Instagram about Nineteen Degrees Restaurant. Lately, I had noticed, this restaurant has been getting some buzz on social media and I wanted to see what it was all about. It is located in Thika town, along Mama Ngina Drive.
The eatery comprises two segments; a regular restaurant and a separate VIP area. I asked my partner to accompany me, and we found the interior design and colour choices of the restaurant subtle. I was really impressed by the colour explosions of gold and cream white — it made the walls and decor just spell out ‘luxury’.
It was a pleasant, sunny afternoon, which made me crave for a refreshing strawberry milkshake. The restaurant is comfortable and spacious, with high ceilings and open doorways that give it an airy feel. I liked the open dining concept where customers can enjoy their meals in a fuss-free setting.
When our plate of sirloin steak with French fries arrived, I was immediately won over by the presentation. The fries, the sirloin cubed steak, kachumbari vegetable salad on the side and some tartar sauce, were so well arranged on the plate, like some artist had served the meal. I found the garnish of rosemary crust light, herbal tasting and perfect, which complemented the fries.
Sirloin steak is beef, scrambled to your preference. I am not really a fan of sauces or soup; I happen to have an aversion to them. However, this time round, I just laid my prejudices aside and dug in.
I was impressed by how extremely indulgent it was. It was everything I could want in a dish. I could taste all the elements as they intertwined in my mouth — the butter, the steak, which was tender and gooey, and the sauce. This was one of the best dishes I have had yet.
The next dish we ordered and shared was a plate of beef curry with steamed rice. This is beef smothered in curry powder barbecue sauce spiced with sesame seeds.
I found the thick cubes of beef juicy and pleasant on my taste buds. The coating of the home-made barbecue sauce also made the meal taste, well, so good.
Actually, I loved both dishes more well because, I love anything meaty. Moreover, the dishes were pocket-friendly, ranging from Sh900 to Sh1,000 a piece.
To finish off the late lunch, I opted for a cold drink as opposed to the normal dessert. I had the Moscow mule. It is a cocktail made of limejuice, vodka and some ginger beer, usually served in a coffee mug. The drink is best served chilled and it was a perfect way to end our lunch.
Nineteen Degrees certainly knows how to attract a large crowd of diners. Given quite a number of options to choose from and tasteful drinks, who could possibly resist?