Can we Toque? Restaurant review. Marble, Rosebank.

This was my second visit to Marble, the Rosebank restaurant of renowned chef David Higgs.
The first time, I had enjoyed my meal but some of the flavours were a bit off. I wanted to see an improvement. Both of the two chums I was with had excellent meals. I did not.

The restaurant is spacious, with a beautiful bar and an almost pornograpic wine cellar.  It wasn’t busy at lunchtime, but there were plenty of well-heeled, high-heeled patrons.  The open-view kitchen was nice, and the chef was spotted from afar, but did not come to greet me.   Probably too star-struck?

Deciding my budget would not run to the giant prawns at R750 a plate, or an equally-expensive mixed seafood option, I ordered some less extravagant grub.

Soon after we were seated, some bread was plonked down, with no explanation. There were two types of bread – one really nice traditional crusty bread, and one a rather bland triangular thing. The butter was unusually salty.
Having said that, there was a slab of butter and also a pile of orange stuff. They didn’t tell me what the orange ooze was, and I did not ask.  It stayed there, an early foretaste of Halloween?

One of my chums had the Caesar salad. Brill. The best he had ever had.  He raved. And he used to run one of SA’s top restaurants, so he should know.  My other guest chose octopus, which was tasty but a bit overcooked, and therefore rather chewy.   Not good.

I am still confused about my mixed-nibbles starter. There were two hotdogs, which were quite tasty, but a lot more bun than dog. Nothing special. Then came two tacos – delicious, but cold. I am not saying they should have been warm, but it was a bit of a surprise.  Also on the platter came two chicken skewers, which were beautifully tender inside, but a bit burnt on the outside.   A bit of a let-down, overall.

It said on the menu that our main-course would be served when we called for it. It arrived with no prompting from us, and I sent it back.

Throughout the lunch, we enjoyed some delightful wines by the glass, with my highlight being a Rust n Vreede Cab.
I did, after a decent pause, receive my lamb chops. They came with some cold green stuff, possibly guacamole. Not very tasty; a bit too fatty. The flavours did not work for me. There was a lot of stuff on the plate.  I would have preferred simpler, better food.

My mate Mike pronounced his pork belly excellent, and even took a pic of it. The other dish – tuna – was also brill.
We finished with cheese – with three out of four being delicious and the fourth looking as if it would have been more at home on a soap dish.  They tried to bring some more of the horrible triangular wannabe bread, but I got them to swap it for the nice stuff.

One sorbet for the sweet-toothed, and we were done.
The lamb was taken off the bill, but it still came to R2085 for three, with tip.

Given our mixed experiences, I give it 3.5*

Key to the Ratings….
1* Dog food is nicer
2*. Cat food is nicer
3*. Not bad if Woolworths is sold out of ready meals.
4*. I like it
5*. I love it. Not to be missed.

 

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