It’s lunchtime. You’re downtown, hungry and only have an hour. Where should you go? IN KAMPALA has a mystery diner roving the streets reviewing lunch joints to help you decide…

Café Platinum is for those with energy and determination. First, it’s housed in an unassuming location, behind Christ the King Catholic church on Colville Street, and could easily be missed. Second, it’s situated on the third floor which, in the case of this building, means climbing seven sets of stairs. However, those who do reach the rooftop restaurant will be rewarded with some great panoramic views of the city while they lunch.

Given its location behind the church, lunch time customers could be forgiven for thinking that they were in the back rows of the 1:00pm Mass which is fully audible in the restaurant. Tables are arranged under a canopy and alternative seating is available inside, although these are squeezed and something like dining in a corridor.

Café Platinum’s menu is surprisingly extensive. Open for breakfast there are options ranging from katogo at 4,000 UGX to continental/English breakfast at 12,000 UGX. A rare menu item is decaffeinated coffee at 6,000 UGX hardly ever is on offer. For lunch/dinner, the ‘African corner’ on the menu offers interesting twists on traditional nyama choma, in additional to vegetarian options, and international dishes. Pineapple features heavily on the menu surprisingly finding its way into many selections.

Although set up with tables and burners for buffet there was no lunch buffet on offer. The large bbq grill in the centre of the rooftop is only lit in the evening, rendering much of the menu off-limits for lunch. All of this and the presence of a well-stocked bar and flat screen point to Café Platinum as being more of an after work and evening venue. Given the good nyama choma menu we might be better off recommending you come to the rooftop after work to watch football with a cold beer and beef muchomo. The restaurant is open until 10:30 pm.

An apparent victim of UMEME’s daytime load shedding, the food took over an hour to arrive, which makes it a less suitable spot to grab a quick bite if you have to be back at the office in a timely way. When it did arrive, the food was thoughtfully presented – but the sautéed beef seemed to be boiled rather than sautéed. The goat muchomo was well flavoured but tough. The chapatti, however, accompanying the muchomo, may be a contender for the best in Kampala.

While not the best option for those in a lunch rush Café Platinum but could be your next choice for a BBQ spot after work with colleagues while keeping an eye on the poor people in the traffic jams below.

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