Hidden within a tropical garden and adorned with a loud, colorful décor, The Carnivore opens up into a vegetarian’s fiery nightmare, or a meat eaters Shangri-la, depending on your culinary leanings.
Twice making the world’s 50 best restaurants by Restaurant Magazine, Carnivore opened in 1980 to immediate popularity. Borrowing aesthetic from medieval banquet halls, the decor is indoor/outdoor with tropical plants and streams weaving around tables. A giant roasting pit resides near the entrance of the building, covered in traditional Maasai swords ladened with hunks of meaty goodness from just about every animal you can think of that’s not on the endangered species list.
Constantly being turned and basted over the pit are selections of the likely suspects at any BBQ–chicken wings, spare ribs, lamb, and different cuts of pork and beef. For the more adventurous there are bolder choices, such as camel, crocodile, tasty kidney morsels, and mutura, a local sausage consisting of cow or goat meat, tripe, and cooled blood seasoned with onions, salt, pepper, and chili. After being seated and served some gratuitous soup and bread and introduced to a double-decker revolving tray of exotic sauces, the diners are then inundated with servers carrying the meat-encumbered Maasai swords, offering the succulent outside cut of whatever strikes the customers fancy.
Truly a practice in excess, visitors are encouraged to continue shoving food down their gullets until they can take no more, signaling their surrender by lowering a white flag provided for them in the center of the table. When the servers have been alerted to their victory, they will then bring around desert and coffee to those who are up to the challenge.
Besides the meat orgy, Carnivore also has a nightclub, gardens, a playground for children, signature cocktails, an events area, an African heritage gallery, and believe it or not, a vegetarian menu.
Know Before You Go
Near Wilson Airport