• The place to be was J’s Fresh Bar & Kitchen along Muthangari Drive where all the action was going down.
  • From Kenya’s traditional fermented porridge, wild berries, baobab jam, to licorice from Finland all were on display and offering free samples to the public.
  • At the end of it all vendors who had wowed the judges with their creative foods, setup and originality were awarded with gift hampers.

The first ever Black Food Festival was held in Nairobi, Kenya on Sunday to great funfair.

The place to be was J’s Fresh Bar & Kitchen along Muthangari Drive where all the action was going down.

Black Food Festival. (Georeg Tubei)
Black Food Festival. (Georeg Tubei)

The Black Food Festival is a celebration to celebrate and highlight unique food away from commonly accepted food colours.

A food vendor display her creation to the judges during the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
A food vendor display her creation to the judges during the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

The brainchild behind the concept is Regina Boros, a Hungarian food enthusiast, blogger, and marketing professional from Budapest who founded the Black Food Festival initiative in 2016.

Regina Boros. (George Tubei)
Regina Boros. (George Tubei)

She partnered with Kenya’s largest food lovers online community - Let’s Cook Kenyan Meals Community - and Mombasa Farmers and Artisans Market to bring the event to Africa for the first time.

“The whole project is about being open minded and trying out new dishes out of the ordinary. We celebrate and highlight unique food and provide a platform for people to explore their gastronomy,” Regina told BISSA.

A black doughnut on display at Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
A black doughnut on display at Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

At exactly 11am, J’s Fresh Bar & Kitchen doors were flung open ready to welcome Nairobians of all walks of life.

Honey on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
Honey on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

And Kenyans did not disappoint, they come out in large numbers all donning their favourite black gear ready to give their taste buds and gastronomy a food treat like no other. 

Viviene, one of the guests who graced the Black Food Festival in Nairobi. (George Tubei)
Viviene, one of the guests who graced the Black Food Festival in Nairobi. (George Tubei)

Vendors displaying various kinds of black inspired products were meticulously arranged across J’s Fresh Bar expansive floor space.

Handcrafted products on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
Handcrafted products on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

All one needed to do was stroll from one vendor to another feasting your eyes and mouth to your fill.

Akusi coffee on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
Akusi coffee on display at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

Some vendors experimented with natural dark color and ended up creating amazing products. Purple, brown and dark blue meals were also welcome and on display.

Some vendors experimented with natural dark color and ended up creating amazing products. (George Tubei)
Some vendors experimented with natural dark color and ended up creating amazing products. (George Tubei)

From Kenya’s traditional fermented porridge, wild berries, baobab jam, to licorice from Finland all were on display and offering free samples to the public.

licorice from Finland on display during the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
licorice from Finland on display during the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

There was also a wide array of handcrafted artisanal products such as african inspired jewelry, accessories and art pieces to go around.

Kenyan beaded belts on display during Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
Kenyan beaded belts on display during Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

“I am very happy with the turnout, we have a wide variety of vendors all displaying various products,I have to say it's even more diverse than our last black food festival which we held in London, it has been a great success,“ said Regina.

Regina Boros admiring a handcrafted artisanal product from one of the vendors at Balck Food Festival. (George Tubei)
Regina Boros admiring a handcrafted artisanal product from one of the vendors at Balck Food Festival. (George Tubei)

Black food is not only visually appealing to the eye but also good for the stomach. Some of the finest coffee, decadent dark chocolate, luscious black berries, to traditional balsamic vinegar that has been made for centuries using traditional methods are some of the healthiest foods around.

The jury panel made up of gastronomy professionals evaluated the food offered by the exhibitors at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
The jury panel made up of gastronomy professionals evaluated the food offered by the exhibitors at the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)

At the end of it all vendors who had wowed the judges with their creative foods, setup and originality were awarded with gift hampers.

The over winners of the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)
The over winners of the Black Food Festival. (George Tubei)