Nando's - Your Eyes Eat First!

Honestly, I've only had Nando's once before - that was when I was on a short trip to KL and my (then) girlfriend asked me to get her a half-a-chicken from KLIA2. It was also my first time in that airport, and between rushing to check in to my flight, drop off luggage and getting completely and utterly lost, I managed to haul the half-a-chicken to her house; paper-bag and all!

It was lemon and herbs, as I recall - and having spend several hours in transit, there isn't much left to the flavor so I never thought twice of having it again. That, and the fact that there wasn't any Nando's in my city (or state for that matter).

Until now... 

When Nando's opened at VivaCity Megamall, I could never find the time or company to go! I even missed the launch - Nando's hatching in Kuching. Get it? Hatching? Because of Nando's specialty?

Fast forward several months - maybe close to a year idk - I spent several weeks in Miri. When I came back, the first thing I did was visit The Spring mall (because!). Surprise surprise, Nando's opened up another casa there! (Nando's outlet/restaurant = casa)

First impression: what a nice place to dine! There wasn't alfresco seating (there is in VivaCity) but it makes sense because Kuching is a hot city. The ambiance was dotted with circular leather booths, small tables for two, four and six as well as a huge table that could seat 10 to 12 persons easy! Get this, they're all made of genuine leather and wood too. The chandeliers are warm, half the walls were glasses letting the natural light in (selfie addicts, lighting here is life!) and the other half is dotted with decor from recycled materials as well as South African artwork (hello new profile picture lol).

Ah I forgot to take shots of the wash basin! It was so cleverly designed I woudn't mind sitting next to it at all (it's a personal preference thing because I prefer less traffic around where I sit)

Modern and comfy!

Art and decor is something that I also wanted to touch on. The Nando's Global Art initiative features Southern Africa creativity worldwide - turning their outlets into an art gallery of pieces sourced from developmental programmes run by Yellowwoods Art. Artists under these programmes are enabled with opportunities to earn regular income while spreading awareness of their culture. Currently, Nando's has over 17,000 pieces in their collection displayed in their outlets all over the world! And yes, beacuse of that, every single restaurant is uniquely designed! So next time you're dining at one of Nadod's casas, keep an eye on the art pieces and comment below on which ones caught your eyes!

Yeah yeah, we know you enjoyed how it looks. What about the food?

Now now, hakuna your tatas. Chill. That's part of why you'd want to dine at Nando's. I was told that their peri peri sauce is a sauce to be reckoned with. It is spicy - that was what I was told. But first let's talk about their selection of being fine af - or Fino in Portuguese (I'm talking about the sides of course). There are 3 choices to savour - Spinach for the Popeyes out there, Red Skin Mashed Potatoes with a whole lot of yummies and (in my honest opinion) the one that'll be ordered most, Sweet Potato Chips. These were so good our tabled ordered seconds after we finished our chickens!

New Fino Sides

Ah yes, the chickens. I can't say a lot about the chicken because I'd rather be stuffing my mouth with them. The big challenge for Nando's in Kuching is that their raw stocks has to take an additional 3 to 4 weeks to arrive. The chickens are sourced locally, of course. I'm talking about the peri peri goodness they used to marinate the chicken in. 24 hours marinate, freshly delivered everyday, no frozen makes for tender, fall of the bone, savory, warm and super good!


And the sauce? This depends on person to person but if you're asking for my opinion, it's not as hot as I had anticipated (having once tasted 20 chillies in a sambal that first burned my tongue then turned into a sort of sweet hotness while crying my eyes out and sweating the way away). That said, I enjoyed it very much because it allows me to taste the flavour - hot with a bit of sourness to it. Mind you this is the Extra Hot!

I would really recommend it. If you're able to hold your ground pass the hotness (tissues at ready please), it will turn into a sweet coating on your tongue and allows you to taste everything so much better! But if you's a wuss, there's always the mild and ginger ones for you to enjoy too. But know that you're missing out. Afterall, peri peri chicken is supposed to be hot?

Alrite so we've talked about the looks and feels of Nando's; particularly the one at the Spring Shopping Mall. We've talked about the new sides. We've talked about the chicken. For us that day, we had the Caramel Cheesecake. The best way to enjoy this is to pair it with straight up black coffee because it is deliciously sweet. I can't get over the fact that when it came for the next person sitting next to us, and she enjoyed it bite after bite, I just wanna steal it from her! Dense and thick with cheese between a sweet base and caramel top that glisten with a sheen so good I just can't!

Deliciously sweet 

And when it finally made it's way into my mouth, I die (in South African accent).

Well, there you go. You can take my word for it or better yet, head over to Nando's near you and try it for yourself. 10 out of 10 would dine there again!

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