#FoodieFriday: The Dawa Sun Downer

  • 27 March 2015

Dawa Means 'Medicine'

The long lazy days of Watamu make it the ideal place for a sundown cocktail, a tradition right across Kenya. If there is a National Cocktail in Kenya, it would probably be the Dawa, a drink often enjoyed and always remembered by visitors. In Swahili ‘Dawa’ means medicine and this drink is definitely good for all that ails you. It combines the smooth taste of local honey and lime with a cure-all kick in the tail.

For each individual drink:

  • Half a tablespoon of sugar
  • 2 ounces of good quality Vodka
  • Roughly crushed ice cubes
  • 1 whole lime quartered
  • 1 generous tablespoon of honey (ideally wild honey)
  • A Dawa stick (a short solid wooden stick)


  1. Put the quartered lime and sugar into a whisky tumbler.
  2. Squeeze limes lightly into the sugar then add the ice and pour over the vodka.
  3. Take the Dawa stick and coat it thickly in the honey and push the stick into the drink.
  4. Serve the drink. You can then use your stick to stir the drink and squish the lines. The more squishing you do, the sweeter the drink, Get the taste right for you and knock it back. Repeat with another one (you know you will).

You can have a Dawa in any of the bars and hotels in Watamu.

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