When I arrived this afternoon for my great ‘KGL Fast Food’ experiment, I was disappointed to see the doors locked. So sad. But, fear not! I soon realised that the locked building in front is just the bar area (which was packed last Saturday night when I drove by in case anyone is in search of a new night spot) and that there’s another, more restaurant-y part that was open just behind. They offered to open up the bar section for us but we opted instead to sit in the other area. Take note, though, that if you’re looking for alcohol with your food, you can only buy and consume it in the bar.
We were happy in the more traditional-looking fast food sitting area with the red and yellow theoretical hunger-enducing colours surrounding us. The booths are huge and comfortable and we were wooed by the three-sided spinning menus. Yes folks, that’s all it takes to impress. It should be noted that we were also very impressed with the glassware, tables and the placemats.
The fancy spinning menu is pretty extensive with a good choice of breakfast foods and plenty of coffee and tea choices (a latte is Rwf 1,500 and African tea is Rwf 2,000), fresh juice (Rwf 2,500), icey fruit drinks (Rwf 3,500) to go along with it. There’s the usual Kigali restaurant offering of omelettes (Rwf 1,500), burgers (Rwf 3,000 with fries), and spaghetti bolognaise but they mix things up a bit with chicken nuggets, buffalo wings (Rwf 3,000) and sneak filet mignon (Rwf 4,000) on there just to be fancy. To round it all off, they have nyama choma (Rwf 8,000) and pizza (Rwf 5,000). Not the typical menu for a fast food place… it’s more like an American-style diner with an African twist.
If you go here expecting an assembly line of burgers, fries ready to be scooped out of the deep fryer at a moment’s notice, and little packets of ketchup that will be given to you in minutes then you’ll be disappointed. Though this place has ‘fast food’ as part of it’s name, it’s really not that different from a typical restaurant in Kigali. Yes… the fast food-eqsue, McDonald’s-style counter with photos of food that you see immediately after walking in the main doors would imply that one would be able to order and have the food ready almost immediately. As in fast. But no… the counter appears to be some sort of a ruse and food here will take about 30 minutes. While this is fast for Kigali, it’s slow for ‘fast food’ and you’d probably be pretty annoyed waiting at the counter for half an hour for a burger. But typical fast food is nasty anyway, so I can’t really complain too much about that.
The service was ok. Not super attentive but friendly and pretty quick. Our server brought a side salad instead of the fries that were requested and the chicken sandwich that was ordered was nothing like what was actually served. Plus I’m not sure if you’re supposed to order at the counter and then sit down or what… it’s kind of a weird setup.
In an effort to sample a few different things, I ordered a chocolate milkshake, some meatballs and a cheeseburger with fries. Yes, I feel pretty gross now. The shake wasn’t bad, but it also wasn’t chocolate. It tasted more like thick milk than anything else. The meatballs were hard and flavourless and one of them had a chunk of bone in it. Surprise! The cheese on the burger looked like melted plastic (yay gouda!) but overall it wasn’t awful. It wasn’t great either but at least it had lettuce, onion and tomatoes on it and a decent (albeit too big) bun. The fries had potential but seemed a bit underdone. It’s a sad, sad thing when french fries don’t live up to their potential.
That brings me to the veggie brochette (Rwf 1,000)… oh sweet, sweet, veggie brochette. To be fair, none of us were totally sure what a veggie brochette was supposed to be, exactly. We expected grilled vegetables on a stick and were surprised when a stick with three beige balls of mystery were served. Intrigued, we all tried a bit and each came to the conclusion that, while it was indeed a ball of vegetables, it tasted like nothing. Some sort of sauce would have been nice. Or salt. Oh well, at least they were cheap.
I know this place just opened a month or so ago so I hope the issues I’ve had with the food (chocolate milkshake without chocolate, boney meatball, not being fast etc) get worked out with time. KGL Fast Food, like their fries, does have some potential and I think this sort of place will be popular here. It has a strangely nice atmosphere and the bar part looks like it could be fun so I’ll give it another try again at some point. But for now, I’ll satisfy my rare fast food cravings at Mr. Chips instead.
Phone: 0785 302 559