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“Nice Hangout in Karen” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Talisman

Talisman
320 Ngong Road, Nairobi 00502, Kenya
+254 705 999997
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Ranked #1 of 341 Restaurants in Nairobi
Cuisines: African, European, Pan-Asian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children, Romance, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Delivery, Late Night, Dessert
Description: The Talisman is an elegant Gastrolounge with an eclectic twist. Described as "The best place in town" by New York Times Spirited Traveler and consistently the #1 restaurant in Kenya on TripAdvisor, The Talisman offers a myriad of experiences to our patrons. Featuring carved wooden pillars from Pakistan, elegant Afghan rugs, charming fireplaces, sprawling terraces and idyllic gardens, The Talisman blends fine dining with unbridled eclecticism. We have made every effort to create the ideal ambience for those seeking a candle-lit romantic dinner, a casual evening drink with friends, an outdoor lunch with family and everything in between ~ And all this is complemented by distinguished service from our cordial staff.
Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Nice Hangout in Karen”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 6, 2013

This is a nice restaurant at the hear of Karen area. It has a nice proximity to the shopping malls in Karen. The food is great (Loved the big chips !!! Steak is also nice) The outdoor sitting provides a convenient place to have a chat. They have a variety of wines to choose from for the wine lovers.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
J C, Public Relations Manager at Talisman, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Thank you for the kind comments. We're glad you enjoyed your meal and our extensive wine list. Come back any time, as we often have new specials. Next time, why not try one of our 'flights of wine', which allows you to sample three different vintages? Cheers!
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Date | Rating
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English first
nairobi
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
“favorite restaurant in NBO”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2013

Without a doubt one of the best restaurants (if not THE best) in Nairobi. Food and service are consistently good. Great outdoor seating for either lunch or dinner.

  • Visited October 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
J C, Public Relations Manager at Talisman, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this lovely review. We're so glad you enjoyed your meal with us and look forward to welcoming you back!
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Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Top Contributor
81 reviews 81 reviews
19 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“Easily our favourite restaurant in Kenya”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2013

We managed to make it to Talisman twice in November/December last year - once as 'anonymous' guests, and once at the invitation of the owners. We absolutely loved it both times (and found the food and service just as good on our first visit, which says quite a lot about the high standards). The first time we had the forest mushroom gnocchi, and loved it enough to want to try it a second time on our next visit. We ended up just trying a lot of starters that time, and our opinion of the chef, Marcus Mitchell, rose even higher. We JUST managed to squeeze in one of the best portions of chocolate mousse at the end of the dinner, and despite having eater too much it was well worth it! But our favourite item on the menu was without a doubt the feta and coriander samosas - I could quite happily live off nothing else for a week or two. We found the atmosphere really good, and the service was good despite being very busy. There is no doubt that Talisman is our favourite restaurant in Kenya, and it's definitely up there with the best we have tried anywhere in Africa. We are sure to come back whenever we go to Nairobi again!

  • Visited December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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J C, Public Relations Manager at Talisman, responded to this review, April 7, 2013
We absolutely loved having you with us, Marcus and Kate. It was delightful to hear about your adventures in Africa and see your gorgeous photographs. We're truly happy to have become your favourite eatery in Nairobi, and we hope to see you again soon!
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Nairobi, Nairobi, Kenya
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Just re-opened and looks great!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

Fantastic restaraunt in the heart of Karen - the quality of food is easily the best in the neighborhood. Staff are very friendly and caring but the speed of service is wanting. They seemed clearly overwhelmed by the Easter lunch crowd and it was not whether there is a manager or supervisor to oversee the situation. It took really long to get the menus and then the food. But the food brilliant, and great atmosphere.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
J C, Public Relations Manager at Talisman, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Thanks, Michael, for the feedback. We're all trying to get back into the groove after two months off. We have two managers on duty, but the Easter crowd was a real challenge for sure. We're working hard to get back up to speed so no guest is overlooked. Thanks for your patience, and please do come again!
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Nairobi, Kenya
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Open again... but service still needs improvement...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

Talisman is one of my fav (if not my fav) restaurant in Nairobi... Quality of food is very high...
Yesterday gladly returned for a lunch meal and us (and other patrons sitting by us) were pretty frustrated by the luck luck of prompt service... Had to be the one begging a 'flying by' waiter to give us a menu and waited for our food pretty long (so did the neighbours that fed-up were ready to leave without having eaten their food, chef Marcus saved the day by talking to them before they managed to leave...).

During busy days as weekends they must get more stuff and a manager that keeps an eye on everything and makes sure the customers are being taken care of... I think that is the main problem, the number (and for some) quality of waiters that seem to be overwhelmed... No cutlery ready on table (that we had booked in advance...), one chair missing...

Once again the quality of food is high, but without a comparable level of service there will always be a 'question mark' about awarding a top score...

  • Visited March 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
J C, Public Relations Manager at Talisman, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Thanks so much for your candid remarks. Things have been insanely busy since our reopen, but we definitely do not want to miss a single customer when it comes to service. Thanks for your patience with us while everyone gets back in the groove after two months off...and we hope you'll come again and let us try harder to win a five-star rave!
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