24 YEARS in westlands.
Hey there! Welcome to this post and thank you so much for stopping by!
I have been going through a ‘writers-block’ kind of situation for about two weeks and so, haven’t been able to write or even post on social media. In as much as the content is there, I think I needed a short break to re-organise how I do things and of course, launch the new filter & find feature on the website. You can see it here. It is basically a feature that helps you find food. snacks and drinks based on the amount of money you want to spend. Not all the data I have collected has been entered. Therefore, if you don’t find exactly what you are looking for, keep checking back as I am always updating it. Additionally, if you have any ideas on its improvement, feel free to share them with me.
Last Saturday, I went for the Bloggers Association of Kenya (BAKE) Awards and had an amazing time. Kulanini was nominated for the Best Food Blog of the Year Award, along with four other food bloggers. In as much as you all voted and asked your friends to vote, I didn’t win the award. Kaluhis Kitchen for the third time in a row, took the title home. I love her content and I am so happy for her. Congratulations Kaluhi!
Kulanini came in second place with over 1,000 votes. I want to extend my sincere gratitude to you all for supporting me in one way or another. I still can’t believe 1,000 people voted for me. To those who read these posts, comment, follow Kulanini on social media, and even those who nominated me and helped me get votes, you are all appreciated. Thank you so much. To see pictures from the ceremony, click here, and to see the total vote tally for the food category and others, click here.
On to the reason we are here – GIPSY RESTAURANT & BAR. If you’ve been to Westlands for a night out, you have seen, heard of or even been to Gipsy Bar on Woodvale Grove. At Gipsy, there are 4 theme bars and a restaurant; all of which, have been there since 1994.
The menus can be seen below:
Gin or Vodka shots range between 300/= to 350/= while whiskey shots range 400/= to 500/=.
What most people don’t know about Gipsy, is that; during the day, it is a relaxed restaurant serving delicious international and Italian dishes. At night, it turns into a lively club/bar with incredible music and an electric vibe. In terms of ambience, they have done a great job maintaining a 24 year old bar. There are relatively new places that look over 50 years old yet Gipsy still looks great.
I really appreciate the rustic & relaxed vibe offered here. The dance-floor is in an open space outdoors; giving you enough room to dance while the theme bars have comfortable sofas with interesting wall paintings.
There is a 2 for the prize of 1 pizza offer every Wednesday. Considering, how great their pizzas are, rest assured, I will be there every other day. Let’s just hope the quality is just as good on offer days.
I would say that this restaurant has greatly been influenced by the Italian culture & cuisine. At the table, there are herbs and oils provided to amplify the flavour of the food. Before we get into the food, let’s talk about their cocktails. ‘Sex on the beach’ is a vodka cocktail with peach, cranberry juice and pineapple juice. In terms of flavour, I thought this 800/= cocktail was delicious! You could barely tell it had any alcohol since the juice was really sweet.
Why is it that long island cocktails are always expensive? Maybe it’s because, they have vodka, tequila & rum. The ‘Long Island Iced Tea’ at Gipsy, goes for 950/=. Just like the vodka cocktail, this drink was delicious, refreshing and everything in between. Despite the cocktails being pricey, I thought the balance of flavour was great! If you are someone who notes inconsistent taste in their cocktail or frowns upon flavours not marrying well, then you will love Gipsy cocktails.
Italians call a folded pizza – Calzone. It is like a large pizza pie with fillings similar to the toppings you would get on a pizza. In this case, our calzone was topped with a thick tomato sauce and filled with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and mushrooms. The flavour was ‘herb-y’, fresh and tasty!
I wish the sauce inside and outside the calzone was much less. I thought it was moist instead of crunchy. I am not saying I want biscuit texture. Just a slightly harder than bread texture would be nice. Do you order thick or thin crust on your pizza? For me, so long as I don’t have to drink water to take down every bite, I am fine with either. I think anyone who loves saucy pizza, would really enjoy this.
Next up is Gipsy pizza. Chicken pesto has tomato, mozzarella, grilled chicken and green peppers. I automatically fall in love with a dish when I see green peppers (hoho) in anything. The sour-sweet flavour burst a fresh hoho can give you, is indescribable. I’d say one is enough for only 2 people or even 1 very hungry person. It goes for 1,280/= and comes with an ultra thin crust. The pizza in itself was very moist. At no point did I feel I needed a gallon of water to help down my bite. I believe this is one place that has mastered the art of putting cheese on pizza. Sometimes the toppings just slide of and your left with saucy bread. Not at Gipsy.
After trying their Gitano pizza, I only want ground beef in my pizza instead of chunks of meat. The ground beef can easily be spread such that every bite has meat. It is 1200/= and is topped off with basil leaves for that added Italian flavour. One thing you must know about their pizzas & food, is that it is really oily. It is not nauseating, but quite different. I think you should ask that your food be prepared with minimum oil.
One of the starters offered is a vegetarian bruschetta with chilli feta cheese and olives in olive oil. This bread is so oily, you’d think it was literally soaked in oil. I could barely take two bites. The flavour was great but the oil just overwhelmed me. If possible, you can ask to put the oil/butter for yourself. This was 700/= for about five.
Never have I ever had such tender beef. The flavour was a simple rosemary marination improved by slices of parmesan cheese. Yes. This is the one time I have enjoyed parmesan cheese. It has a strong milky flavour so needs to be paired with a stronger flavour – beef. Tagliata sliced beef fillet comes with french fries, and a salad @ 1450/=. I thought the portion was very small and found myself wishing for a more generous serving. (Especially of the fries.)
The french fries are very well prepared. They are crunchy and not oily. They are also well cooked to give a nice golden-brown colour. Sometimes you eat fries and they taste like boiled potatoes coated in a teaspoon of oil.
Until recently, I thought a cheese burger was a one with just cheese and nothing else. How wrong I have been! Gipsy’s florentine cheese burger is actually a beef burger with melted mozzarella cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and onions. It goes for 900/= and comes with some french fries. Again, I thought the fries were not generously portioned.
I felt the burger was a bit dry and had to put in some ketchup to help with that. Thank God it was Heinz! Maybe if they put that special house-made tomato sauce, it would have been great! The flavour and marination on the meat was spot on and the mozzarella went great with it. I am a huge fan of mozzarella cheese so this was a big win for me!
The next post will be on the Sarova Panafric Sunday Brunch that has just been launched. Stay tuned!
Thank you for stopping by!