Can you imagine dining like Egyptian
Royalty of ancient times? You can actually do it at Nefetari’s
Fine Cuisine & Spirits in Tallahassee. Not only is the food
healthy and delicious, the décor is a feast for the eyes. One of
the first things you see is a stuffed lion named Maliki near the
entrance. The entire restaurant is filled with Egyptian and
African art. It’s a mini-museum.
|Maliki greets you at the
Nefetari’s Fine Cuisine & Spirits was born
out of a lifetime dream of Sharon Dennard and her husband Dana,
both practicing psychologists. They decided to give up their
high-level professions and take a leap of faith into the risky
It grew out of their frustration in finding
a restaurant that suited their needs. As busy professionals they
ate out a lot. Sharon recalls, “At that time I was a vegetarian.
Now I’m a vegan. Say there was a group going out to eat. Some
wanted vegan, some vegetarian, some only ate raw, and some were
carnivores. There was nowhere in Tallahassee before Nefetari’s
they could all get their palates satisfied.” She continued,
“Next problem, we get together and you say I’ve got a taste for
Italian. I say, I was thinking Indian. So then you have
push-pull. I say okay, we’ll do Italian and get Indian another
time. So I thought why couldn’t restaurants mix more than one
|The bar at Nefetari’s Fine
Cuisine & Spirits
Another problem Sharon saw in local
restaurants was more of a fast foods mentality. Less healthy
foods served fast so people could eat and then go rush away for
entertainment. When she opened Nefetari’s Fine Cuisine & Spirits
she solved all of those problems. Food is healthy and organic.
The menu is varied; and you have lots of choices in each dish.
You can find items like Caribbean Jerky, barbequed wings and
Mediterranean hummus all on the same menu.
My choice was Curry Coconut and for the
protein, I was able to choose from chicken, shrimp, lamb or
tofu. Shrimp won out for me and when it arrived I was very happy
with my choice. Most of the dishes had that option. Pretty hard
to find someone that didn’t see something that appealed.
The desserts hold their own and then some.
Their cheesecake is divine. Sharon began preparing her own
cheesecake when her pastery chef took a vacation. By the time he
returned she had become “Queen of Cheesecake.”
|With a cheesecake
and a cocktail like these how can you go wrong?
Beverage-wise, you can order anything from
a veggie smoothie to a fine wine or a cocktail.
As for entertainment, no need to rush out
to go elsewhere. Entertainment is local, center stage and
ongoing at Nefetari’s. The music is all original.
|A local band
They do mystery dinners. First one was
themed “Who Killed King Tut.” Everything was themed and
you had to have 1330BC attire. The food was researched to be
authentic. You are caught up in the theme and you don’t know if
another party sitting next to you is a guest who bought a ticket
or a part of the production. At the end Sharon calls up a
few guests to say who they think did it. Usually they guess
wrong. The audience also picks the best dressed person. The
woman who won that night had a elaborate headdress. When Sharon
asked her how she created the headdress, she replied. "I used a
If you want to really live it up royally,
you can reserve the Queen's Table. “It’s anchored by an
authentic looking replica of King Tut’s throne and a replica of
his aunt, Queen Sitamun’s throne at the other end. Everyone
should have a moment in time when they feel like king or queen.
When you’re celebrating a birthday or anniversary sitting at
that table, everything is different. You have a private
attendant and when you are sitting at that table, everyone is
sitting out there wondering how you got to sit there.”
|The Queen's Table
Nefetari’s Fine Dining & Cuisine really
lives up to its name. As Sharon stated, their tag line is “A
royal dining experience.”
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