REVIEW: A LESSON IN URBANOLOGI

Let's Eat!, Reviews

I was fortunate enough to be invited to try out Urbanologi‘s new winter menu this past Saturday and my was it amazing!

urbanology logo

THE RESTAURANT

Urbanologi is an Asian Fusion restaurant situated at the 1 Fox Precinct in Ferreirasdorp, Johannesburg and is based inside the Mad Giant Brewery. Together, they work alongside each other to come up with flavours that make for the perfect food and beer (or wine) pairing combinations for patrons to enjoy.

giant image

THE FOOD & DRINKS

We tasted six dishes either pairing it with the recommendation on the menu or with a drink recommended to us by our waiter.

1. Tempura Shimejii Mushroom with tamarind dressing and butternut purée paired with Mad Giant Electric Light Weiss

The butternut puree and tamarind dressing was very yummy. I was particularly fond of the tamarind dressing with it’s sweet/sour undertones. It definitely adds a little something extra to the dish.

IMG_2776

Tempura Shimejii Mushroom with tamarind dressing and butternut purée paired with Mad Giant Electric Light Weiss

 

2. Marjoram Cured Lamb Rib Kushiyaki served with fresh oak wood teriyaki and roast apple paired with Mad Giant Electric Light Weiss

The meat was tender and soft- always a good thing!

IMG_2777

Marjoram Cured Lamb Rib Kushiyaki served with fresh oak wood teriyaki and roast apple paired with Mad Giant Electric Light Weiss

 

3. Gamefish Tataki with orange, nori, sesame emulsion and pork crackling paired with gin and tonic

This entire dish just works. The citrus undertones are amazing. We paired it with Gin and Tonic, which is not a recommendation on the menu but the lime from the gin blended right in. Definitely a pairing to try!

IMG_2778

Gamefish Tataki with orange, nori, sesame emulsion and pork crackling paired with gin and tonic 

 

4. Heirloom Baby Carrots with star anise and orange blossom labneh and kumquat marmalade paired with Boschendal Chardonnay

This one is said to be quite popular so I just had to try it. What stands out for me with this dish is the liquorice and citrus undertones throughout. It literally tasted like the orange coloured liquorice sweet – yum yum yum!

IMG_2779

Heirloom Baby Carrots with star anise and orange blossom labneh and kumquat marmalade paired with Boschendal Chardonnay

 

5. Coal Fired Broccoli with smoked Gorgonzola cream and broccoli gremolata paired with Boschendal Chardonnay

This one was the best! You wouldn’t expect much from it but dynamite definitely comes in small packages. Words actually cannot describe how amazing the broccoli and gorgonzola cream tastes. For me, the entire dish is just so warm and hearty and, if mash was on the menu, it would be so amazing if it were topped on some mash alongside a yummy piece of steak. Hope this one stays on the menu FOREVER!

IMG_2780

Coal Fired Broccoli with smoked Gorgonzola cream and broccoli gremolata paired with Boschendal Chardonnay

 

6. Ginger Malva with like leaf ice-cream and popcorn soil paired with Hanepoot

I’m not really one for desserts but this one was good. The lime and ginger works so well together and when paired with the Hanepoot, another recommendation from our waiter, it just takes this dessert to another level.

IMG_2781

Ginger Malva with like leaf ice-cream and popcorn soil paired with Hanepoot

 

THE BREWERY

I was taken through the brewery as well. Definitely something to try just to give you some insight into the process the beer goes through before it gets to us – and, even better, it’s really not that expensive!

 

SERVICE

Last time I went there (or tried to) the service was very disappointing. We stood at the door and no one even paid attention to us and that was just a let down for me so we left and sat in the Mad Giant Beer Garden instead. This time around, the service was awesome. Our waiter was so sweet and friendly and always made sure the table was cleared and ready for the next dish. I can’t really say if this is how the service usually is or whether it was just because of who I was with, hehehe.

 

PRICES

It’s not that pricey but you definitely have to have some cash if you want to taste a wide variety of items on the menu. Even if you do find the pricing to be quite high, it’s definitely worth it.

 

RATING

10/10! Very hard to get this from me. The last time I had food this good was at La Colombe. Thumbs up to the chef and brewers for amazing food, amazing beer and overall amazing pairings. Can’t wait to try the rest of the menu. A special shout out to Eben! The time there was amazing.

 

Have you been to Urbanologi? How did you find the menu and the service? Did you love it or absolutely hate it? Let me know!

 

 

REVIEW: BUTCHER BLOCK STEAKHOUSE – NOM NOM NOM

Let's Eat!, Reviews

Since I’m always on the hunt for a good steak, I decided to pop into Butcher Block Steakhouse at Mall of the South…

BB_SquareLogo_v10_Pantone1

[PICTURE COURTESY OF safranchisebrands.co.za]

THE RESTAURANT
Butcher Block was founded in 2003 by Manuel Savic and has branches across Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.

THE SETUP
I went to the branch at the Mall of the South. I personally just don’t like the setup of the restaurants at this mall so I don’t quite like the setup of the Butcher Block restaurant either. When I went it was just after lunch so it wasn’t that full but seems like it could get quite crammed on a busy day.

SERVICE
The host there is great. Friendly and attentive. But the only time I saw my waiter was when she took order, brought my food, took my plate once I was done and when I had to call her to get the bill. She didn’t check up on me once. The host did, however, which I appreciated.

FOOD & DRINKS
I ordered their lunch special which is a 200g rump steak with chips and a glass of Wolftrap wine for R59. I ordered a side of mushroom sauce for my steak as well – I absolutely love mushroom sauce. When my food arrived my chips were cold. It definitely would’ve been nicer if it arrived hot. The meat was good – soft, tender, good quality and done to perfection. The mushroom sauce was great – thick and creamy. The 200g rump steak with a side is usually R115. I’m not sure if I enjoyed my meal enough to pay the usual price for this though.

For the wine lovers out there, their wine list is quite extensive so that’s a thumbs up!

With regards to their overall menu, their Butchers Choice steak toppings and their selection of burgers sound absolutely amazing.

They also have a wide selection of sauces and starters – the starter I really want to try is the black mushrooms topped with cream spinach, garlic sauce oven baked with mature cheddar, mozzarella and feta cheese. Chicken livers are in the mix once again so I really gotta try these things, hehe! They also have a wide selection of combos and includes something for every kind of appetite which is rare. I’m not into desserts but they do sound yummy.

Their land & sea, poultry and salad options didn’t really catch my eye.

IMG_2171

200g Rump steak with chips & mushroom sauce and a glass of Wolftrap wine

RATING
6.5/10. They haven’t quite grabbed me yet with this one meal so I think I need to test the rest of the menu before I up this score. The service also wasn’t the best. I would try them out again, perhaps not to Mall of the South.

REVIEW: Aarya – What a disappointment

Let's Eat!, Reviews

I’ve been looking forward to trying out Aarya at Montecasino for a very long time and we finally did last night!

aarya

[PICTURE COURTESY OF Tsogo Sun]

THE RESTAURANT
Aarya, located at Montecasino, Fourways is run by South Africa’s first MasterChef SA winner, Deena Naidoo. It’s open daily from 06h30 – 22h30.

THE FOOD & DRINKS
When you think about Masterchef something very specific comes to mind, i.e. food that is awesomely tasty and a menu that is mouth-watering just hearing or reading about it.

Sadly, that was not the feeling I got reading through the menu. I felt the menu was rather limited and bland and I actually took a really long time to decide what I actually wanted to eat. We finally ordered the grilled salmon on vegetable and mash stack with roasted cherry tomatoes, rocket, pesto and balsamic drizzle and char-grilled bbq basted pork ribs with a side of fries.

When my salmon arrived, something didn’t seem right. It was supposed to be salmon on vegetable and mash stack – the salmon was only placed on green beans and I received no mash. The mash was then brought separately after we asked about it and we were then told that even though the menu says it’s a stack, the mash actually comes separately. I think the mash actually serves no purpose being served on the side. The mash was not nice at all. It tasted very buttery. The green beans had no seasoning, at least no seasoning that I could taste and although the rocket, tomatoes, pesto and balsamic drizzle was probably supposed to give some give some flavour to the fish, I don’t think it really adds anything to the dish.

From the taste I had of the ribs, I didn’t really enjoy it. The meat on the ribs from John Dory’s tastes better. The basting was tasty though.

They have a very limited beer selection (SA beers, Peroni and Windhoek). They did, however, have a wide selection of wines and cocktails.

IMG_1698

Char-grilled BBQ basted pork ribs with a side of fries

IMG_1697

Grilled salmon on vegetable and mash stack with roasted cherry tomatoes, rocket, pesto and balsamic drizzle

PRICING
Prices range from R55 – R220. If I enjoyed the food I’d say it’s worth the price.

THE SERVICE & AMBIENCE
The service was terrible.

The restaurant wasn’t busy at all but our waiter, although he checked up on us, he was never around when we actually needed him. Our table had no serviettes. A table or two away from us was dirty for the duration of our meal (they left before we had even received our food) and another table had not even been set again once cleared. We also weren’t given a steak knife for the ribs and our cutlery on our table was not matched up accordingly.

The ambience isn’t really anything to rave about but then again it was a quiet night. The music was ok – not what I expected them to play though.

RATING
1/10. Probably won’t go back.

Have you been to Aarya? What did you think?

Oyster, Food and Wine Festival 2016 – Monte Casino

It's A Date, Let's Eat!, Meet Me At The Bar

Here’s a bit of a late one!

I have been crazy busy on my side and haven’t had much time (or data) to upload recent event pictures.

Here’s some pictures from this year’s Oyster, Food and Wine Festival 2016 that took place at Monte Casino.

We attended on the Friday which meant ample seating space. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much entertainment. Oysters and wine were great, although, there were many complaints of food poisoning from those who attended on the Saturday and Sunday. That was sad to hear because the oysters we had on the Friday were so fresh and yummy.

The prawns and rice was tasty too but I have to say that garlic butter prawns would’ve been so much better.

The cheese we had from Lorian’s Cheeses was fresh and tasty as usual. You can never go wrong with them!

We bought a bottle of champagne as well. I, unfortunately, can’t comment on whether it was good or not because I’m not really one for champagne.

Yes, it is months later (apologies!!!) but how did you find this year’s Oyster, Food and Wine Festival?

IMG_6829

IMG_6830

IMG_6831

IMG_6832

IMG_6833

IMG_6834

IMG_6835

IMG_6836

IMG_6837

IMG_6838

IMG_6839

IMG_6840

IMG_6841

IMG_6842

IMG_6843

IMG_6844

IMG_6845

IMG_6850

IMG_6851

IMG_6852

IMG_6853

IMG_6854

IMG_6855

IMG_6867

IMG_6868

IMG_6820

IMG_6821

IMG_6822

IMG_6826

IMG_6827

IMG_6828

Leanne

xxx