Food & Drinks

Dining at The Sands at Nomad

sands

Indulge Restaurant at The Sands at Nomad in Diani. PHOTO | POOL

Summary

  • For décor, the walls are bedecked with hundreds upon hundreds of wine bottles, most of them rare brands and collections from some of the finest wineries in the world.
  • Among dishes that can arouse taste buds in readiness for an adventure of flavours, few rival a starter of raw fish and apple.

Dining by the seaside at The Sands at Nomad while listening to the steady clap of ocean waves is something of a dreamland. This boutique hotel in Diani, south coast, with a beach frontage, is a diner’s haven.

Its restaurant, Indulge, which doubles up as a wine cellar, sits 10 guests –14 if you’re ambitious. The table is a long, quirky-shaped with high chairs. For décor, the walls are bedecked with hundreds upon hundreds of wine bottles, most of them rare brands and collections from some of the finest wineries in the world.

I recently attended a four-course dinner experience at the hotel.

To start the night off, we had a carpaccio appetiser, consisting of raw kingfish served with green apple slices, cool cucumber water and honey mayonnaise.

Among dishes that can arouse taste buds in readiness for an adventure of flavours, few rival a starter of raw fish and apple. This combo awakens in your mouth the ability to perceive the essence of different dishes with ease.

If you always struggle to make out different flavours during dining experiences, a course of uncooked fish will do the trick.

For an even more enlivening experience, this starter combines well with Chardonnay or champagne.

Course two was a culinary marvel. But prawns never really underwhelm, especially when served with organic vegetable tempura and spicy homemade mayonnaise.

For this occasion, they were made into crispy golden brown pieces. It was hard to imagine the crustaceans could have been prepared better.

The course was easily my favourite on a night when music, food, and dinner chatter combined into a triple delight.

The third course combined seared tuna and organic aromatic herbs on a bed of cashew nut sauce. There is something splendid about chunks of seared tuna: the dark red flesh is pleasant to the eye and celestial to the palate.

Usually only cooked medium-rare on the outside and invariably raw on the inside, tuna retains its natural flavours, which are complemented by the herbs. The sauce stabilises the explosion of flavours for a balanced effect.

Connoisseurs recommend herbs, as opposed to spices, to accompany fish dishes such as tuna. Herbs are also ideal if delicate champagne is to go with the meal. If strong alcohol in the range of whisky is on the menu, however, you can gamble with spicy food.

For dessert, we had chocolate with coconut mousse. The mousse is sweet chocolate whipped up to a smooth paste and served with strips of coconut flesh. Whereas the chocolate melts easily in the mouth, the coconut lends it some crunch to revel in after a pleasant dining experience.

The Sands at Nomad offers an a la carte menu in their main restaurant by the beach, serving a wide array of cuisines. The hotel says all ingredients are sourced locally.

Built on a 26-acre piece of land, the dining area is so quiet that the only sound is the clang of glasses and cutlery and the screams of the sea.

Night-time temperatures here average about 27° Celsius, too hot to sit inside or to sleep. As such, some guests prefer to sit outside to enjoy their drinks and nocturnal conversations.

Besides the main restaurant, there is the poolside Riva’s Bar and Restaurant.

You can also choose to dine from the terrace of your room. The facilities feature a predominantly Swahili architecture, with a porch where guests can hang out for drinks and meals.

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