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“Flashy ate between bouts of booze” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Gandamack Lodge

Gandamack Lodge
Sherpur Square, Afghanistan
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Restaurant details
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Flashy ate between bouts of booze”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2013

Going out to dinner in Kabul is an unpleasant experience with dim, empty streets and too many over-gunned check points so arriving at any restaurant is pleasant once through the security. Gandamak is well known and after a few minutes in the garden I appreciated the difference between an English garden and an Eastern one. In the East the garden is private and walled, for relaxing in, enjoying the shade of the trees, surrounded by flowers and often water; ideal for eating or for maidens to wander as they do in Indian miniatures depicting them. The typical English restaurant garden is a converted car park behind the pub with heavy, ugly tables and hard benches. Gardens in England are to be looked at from a distance or worked in.

In Kabul no one goes anywhere for quality food, least of all Gandamak with its Flashman associations which are a jolly reminder of England’s dismal history with Afghanistan. He was a macho womaniser little interested in fine dining. He was trained in an English public school to eat what was in front of him or face a beating. Later in life eating is what one did between drinking bouts, so he would have enjoyed Gandamak

Best plates in our group were the pizzas, normally the dullest of dishes and the local crispy chapli kebab with hot minty sauce. Typically for the country, there were few women diners, so perhaps the Flashman theme is appropriate, even if in conflict with their pleasant and civilised garden restaurant.

  • Visited August 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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18 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    3
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Kabul, Afghanistan
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 63 cities Reviews in 63 cities
119 helpful votes 119 helpful votes
“Our top dining venue in Kabul”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2013

This place has the best pizzas in Kabul. The interior section has good service (for Kabul, don't be shy about waving at the waiters!) and there is a really wide selection of dishes in western and afghan style. Very reasonably priced for what you get - a main meal will cost you about $8-$15. In summer its great to eat in the wonderful garden in the evenings.

The rural scene picture Tripadvisor is showing me does not resemble what I've seen of Gandamack in Kabul, which is in Shar-e Now.

Visited April 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milan, Italy
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
“Still a top restaurant in Kabul”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2013

Gandamack is an istitution in Kabul. It offers few solid selected plates in a safe and relaxing environment. Either you eat inside or outside the location is quite and nice. The advantage of not being often crowded is good if you plan a business or a romantic dinner, that given the quality of the food, will surely bring positive results.
The menu is simple but solid; as an Italian I have to say that they some of the best pizzas in Kabul, always the right height, not to high, and with good and fresh ingredients. Some pastas are great too (salmon or vegetable lasagne).

Desserts are ok with a special mention with a chocolate cake, that from time to time is absolutely delicious (they have a high but soft one or a thinner and more thick one which is excellent).

Service is ok, young, with good english, and there is no need to wait too much for the food.

It is a bit expensive but for a good occasion is really worth it!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Kaktovik, Alaska
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
63 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
“Flashman's Gandamak”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2012

During my twenty eight months in Afghanistan, I spent evenings behind the double walls of the Gandamak enjoying food, drink, and conversation with fellow war junkies. Not only did I enjoy the restaurant, but also enjoyed the time spent in the basement Hare and Hound watering hole. Always interesting people. The Flashman would be proud.

  • Visited January 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Great pizza and starters”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 14, 2012

Beautiful garden in summer, and great food (had some aubergine starter, and pizza). Service a bit slow. Still, altogether, probably one of the best expat places in Kabul.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 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.

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