Considering that this was a 4 day week it has felt like the longest week all year!
On Wednesday evening it was just me and Norm at home so we decided to go to Pescarne for dinner as we had seen on their Facebook page that there was a new owner.
We thought the changes they made to the outside area were a real improvement when there on a summer’s hot evening, however I am not sure how good an idea it will be to have it open to the elements in the winter. The problem for us non-smokers is that all the best outside seating is allocated for smokers, despite this being in violation of the law. Laws seldom are adhered to in SA however so us non-smokers just have to bear it.
The doors were all open and the smoke permeated the inside of the venue as well. We chose a seat away from the door but it happened to be next to a large family. I suspect they do not get out much as they were incredibly loud and over-excited. (The parents, not the children, as the children sat so nicely and we did not hear a peep from them but the parents had maybe been nipping at the sherry and were incredibly shouty.)
So off we moved to the other side of the restaurant.
I had been craving some nice seafood so I ordered the ‘baby’seafood platter at R165.
It had 6 decent sized freshly grilled prawns, a huge meaty piece of hake, grilled calamari tubes and heads, 4 of the worlds tiniest mussels and chips and rice.
I asked for some lemon or garlic butter for the prawns. The problem with an open kitchen and loud voices is I can hear someone shout ‘garlic butter??’ loudly in a ‘wtf do they want that for’ manner. It arrived solid so I asked the waitress for melted butter to dip my prawns in. Off it went to the kitchen again and eventually came back in a suitable dipping consistency. The food was really nice, all tasting fresh and perfectly cooked. There were no stray bones in my hake and it was a thick moist piece of fish and the coating crispy. As mentioned the mussels were not nice but that was all I could say was not excellent, they tasted fine they were just microscopic
Norm ordered the fillet steak. 250grams at R149.
He enjoyed it. He is Scots, they say very little. He did say he prefers Papino’s as he likes the big side of steamed veggies that come with their steaks.
The staff were pleasant and eager to please, the food was great and we will definitely go back.
Thursday my friend Retha and I had booked a girls cocktail evening at Kitima. (Note their own website is down at present) We had booked and asked specifically for the corner table and chairs as we detest those little backless stools. We always sit in the same corner. Anyway we arrived and there seemed to be a new hostess, Bronwyn, at least I didn’t recognize her. She could not find our booking at all and peered at the screen for ages. Finally she marched off but she didn’t seem to know where to put us, She said we were booked in the hallway when we questioned about someone being seated in the seats we reserved even though the rest of the bar was entirely empty.
She sat us on the little backless stools we had booked early to avoid. So we sat for a second, got annoyed and went and found her and brought her back to say we were not happy. She then seemed as if we were being awkward about her disorganization. She had a lot of attitude.
We finally got settled on a couch and got in a round of cocktails. Throughout the night we tried a variety of delicious concoctions.
Kitima knows how to make a cocktail.
We always order a few bits of dimsum or sushi and appetizers to share and this night we followed our usual path. We had salmon roses, chicken satay, duck spring rolls, and prawn and mozzarella balls.
Those prawns balls are amaze balls. Crispy, moist, full of flavour and sitting in a wee puddle of a rich sweet sauce and a dollop of wasabi.
We relaxed and chatted and laughed while quaffing the cocktails.
We decided to have dessert and I spotted a peanut butter cake dessert with peanut butter ice cream. I so adore peanut butter. I even mentioned to the waiter that I love peanut butter. Retha ordered amarula parfait I think it was, it’s a pain with the website being down I can’t give prices either. 😦
The waiter came out and asked me what ice cream I wanted and I confirmed again, peanut butter. Then the chef popped up out of nowhere and said to me that they were out of peanut butter ice cream but she could maybe scrape together some mango, I said I thought peanut butter cake and mango ice cream sounded revolting so just bring chocolate instead.
My dessert arrived and I said to the waiter that it was the chocolate fondant not the peanut butter cake.
He insisted it was the chocolate peanut butter cake so I ate some and then I knew for sure I had the wrong dessert.
Retha enjoyed hers.
Then what I ordered arrives with the supposedly non-existent peanut butter ice Cream! How confusing.
So after all that bother I learned that the peanut butter cake is not all that wonderful, the chocolate fondant is what I often order and it was much nicer. The peanut ice cream is amazing though. It was slightly Rocky road. I think it was a quick fix mix of peanut butter stirred into some rocky road but it was delicious!
We were collected by Norm and toddled off home. I felt the pain of all those cocktails when I woke at 6am on Friday however. Ouch. I even had a friend meeting me for lunch. I felt like death.
We went to Tortilla Modern Mexican for lunch and I figured that would either kill or cure me. Lucky it perked me right up and I had a lovely chatty lunch with my friend.
Saturday Lily and I ran errands and did a bit of shopping n Constantia Village. We found some birthday presents for Amber in a cute funky gift shop and as the Constantia Click’s is so much better stocked we headed off there and after decided to pop into Melissa’s for some lunch. It was soooo hot and we sat outside.
We ordered the amazing lemonade which is so divine and refreshing.
Lily is wearing a linen dress I’ve had for over 20 years, she throws on a belt and looks stunning. I love seeing my daughters in things I loved. She is such a beauty isn’t she?
We shared a Caesar salad and a roast beef sandwich.
The beef sandwich came with a sweet chilli and coriander pesto which was amazing. I so loved it, but Lily was not a fan. The Caesar salad had a lot of shredded bacon, I think the heavily anchovies sauce was the perfect balance to the salty bacon. I loved both dishes.
We hit Pic and Pay and bought a few bits in the sale for Lily and a few things for me then heeded home as Lily and Cait had friends coming to stay and Norm and I were off to another Artists In Residence events at 15 On Orange, one of the African Pride Hotel gems. We attended the Jimmy Nevis concert with the same theme and loved it so were highly excited about seeing Matthew Mole as I love his voice. We arrived and were seated at the top of the venue as last time we were below stage level.
We were served drinks and happily started in on the meze platter and snacks.
There were a variety of cheeses, some candied walnuts and honey covering a creamy Brie, some hard emmenthaler, salami, Parma ham, zucchini circling rounds of creamy goats cheese, bits of fig, capers a cup with humus and some crudités and a few different bits of crispy breads. Plenty to keep us occupied.
Matthew came onstage at about 7.45 but where he stood while performing meant all I could see was a speaker.
I tried leaning but it wasn’t great visibility. There was another table with no one there so about half way through we figured no one was coming that late and Norm went to ask if we could move. They quickly shifted things around and moved us and we then had an amazing view for the latter half of the 1st set.
He sang all of the songs we all know and even through in a cover of ‘Heartbreaker’ by Black Eyed Peas. He has a really lovely deep Rich voice and we were so enjoying ourselves.
The 2nd course of food arrived just as we moved seats which was way ahead of the itinerary.
There was a delicious creamy curry chicken and rice dish with crispy onions on top. It was so beautifully flavored. There was also a beef and cous cous dish with morrocan seasoning topped with crispy parsnip slivers and topped with a yogurt dip. However it was in a bowl and we had no knives, so it was impossible to eat the large slabs of meat with the fatty borders. So that went to waste. Norm shoved his in but a lady can’t get away with that.
The dessert came so quickly, we were still on our mains! It was so rushed I didn’t even get a photo. We then noticed that the roadies were breaking down the stage. We finished our food and watched people start to leave. Eventually Norm went over to ask the staff who told him there is no 2nd set that Matthew Mole refused to play further.
The itinerary clearly showed 2 sets.
But clearly the hotel did not deliver on what they told their clients to expect. We were left hanging in limbo, the whole situation poorly managed by the people planning the event. No one even came to announce it is over, and when Matthew Mole wandered vaguely off most people expected him to return.
What a disappointing evening. We had lovely food, lovely entertainment just not the amount of entertainment we were promised. I can’t understand why they didn’t bring in a struggling local artist as a warm up and let Matthew do the 2nd set?
The service was nowhere near as good as last time. Last time it was as if we had our own personal waitress and our glasses were never empty. Last night we had to literally wave one of the staff down to ask for a drink.
We so love the set up but this has left us angry, disappointed and feeling cheated and questioning whether we should even bother to attend the next event. In all the evening cost us R1000 by the time I had 4 vodka lemonades. Norm was driving so only had 1 little glass of the sparkling wine that comes with the tickets. Parking was another R25. And it was over at 8.30 pm?
Today we are having a well deserved pajama day. I hope you all have a nice day doing whatever you chose to do on your day of rest.