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Reviews of Restaurants in Rivonia and the Surrounding Area

including Rivonia, Sunninghill, Paulshof and Petervale (eastern Sandton, Greater Johannesburg).

If you're looking for an enjoyable place to enjoy a superb meal, you might like to consider our opinions:
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Reviews up to 2022 by (late) Judith Taylor, thereafter by Rick Raubenheimer unless attributed otherwsie.  Editing by Rick Raubenheimer.  Reviews are listed in reverse date order (newest at the top).  For older reviews see Restaurant reviews for Rivonia and Morningside. Also see Restaurant reviews for Greater Morningside and Restaurant Reviews for the rest of Sandton.

Furnished Morningside Room to Let 1 October 2024

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Megaplex's monthly e-newsletter brings you, the Sandton restaurant patron, a monthly review of a restaurant in Rivonia, Morningside, Morningside Manor or Gallo Manor!  We aim to bring you the best eateries, the most interesting restaurants, the liveliest shops.  If it's not good, we'll also warn you about it.  Subscribe here.  See newsletters here: All Newsletters 2009-date, 2024 January, February, March, April, May, June.

Links on This Page:
Ocean Basket Chilli Lane> Bosco Ristorante Italiano
Ocean Basket Rivonia, again
Saigon Restaurant
Taste of India Rivonia
Ocean Basket Rivonia
Motherland Coffee Company
Bosco Ristorante Italiano
Rivonia News Café
The Dros, Sunninghill
Doppio Zero
Shawnee Spur, Sunninghill
Adega Express, Rivonia
BBQ Workshop, Rivonia Village
OTG Bar and Kitchen
Piza e Vino Paulshof
Doppio Zero, Chilli Lane
Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane
Taste of India, encore!
BBQ Workshop, Rivonia again
Salsa Mexican Grill
Taste of India again again
Monkey Bluz
BBQ Workshop, Rivonia Village
Thai Cafe, Paulshof
Taste of India, yet again
Pizza Luna, yet again
Doppio Zero Sunninghill
Nino's Rivonia Village
Pizza del Forno
Luca's Pizzeria
Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane
Zio G, Sunninghill
Off the Grid, Paulshof
Calice, Petervale
Milhaus Food & Wine Bar
Shawnee Spur
Thai Cafe, Paulshof
Pizza Luna, again
Bosco, Sunhill Centre
Vintage India
Caffe Della Salute
The Raj, Rivonia
Pizza Luna
Adega Rivonia (again)
310 Sustainable Eatery
The Slug and Lettuce (Mark IV)
News Café, Rivonia
Ghazal, Sunninghill
Luca's Pizzeria
Vasili's Restaurant
Adega Rivonia
Slug and Lettuce yet again
Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane (again)
Browns Restaurant
Taste of India again
Casa da Galinha
Saigon Vietnamese Restaurant
Lucky Moo: Rivonia Village
Slug and Lettuce again
The Codfather
JHB Grill
Taste of Punjab
The Slug and Lettuce
Casa da Galinha
Primi Piatti, Chilli Lane
Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane
Taste of India

Other Restaurant Pages:
Restaurant reviews Morningside
Older Restaurant reviews (for Rivonia and Morningside)
Restaurants in Rivonia

Accommodation in Rivonia

Links to Other Pages:
Home Page – Overview of Shops, Facilities, and Accommodation in Rivonia, Morningside, Morningside Manor, Gallo Manor and surroundings

Other Shopping Centres in the Morningside area:
The Wedge, Morningside
90° on Rivonia
Morning Glen, Kelvin Drive
Morning View, South Road

Shopping Centres in Rivonia:
Rivonia Junction
Mutual Mews
Early Dawn Mall
Rivonia Central

Shopping Centres in Woodmead:
Woodmead Retail Park
Woodmead Value Mart
Woodmead Super Value Centre

Other Places of Interest:
Culture: Books, Movies, etc
Sandspruit Hiking Trail,
Ernest Ullmann Park Recreation Centre,
Montrose Nursery Garden Centre and Gia's Coffee Shop,
Manor Medical Centre,
Morningside Country Club,
Rooms To Let in Morningside

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Around 6000 subscribers, many of them dedicated Sandton Shoppers! e-mail us, or click here.

The Reviews

**** Ocean Basket Chilli Lane: Saturday 29 June 2024

The restaurant was empty when I arrived a little after 1 pm on this chilli day.  More patrons arrived during lunch.

I ordered an Appletiser, which is now R38, and the grilled OB Fish and well-done crispy Chips at R94. At least restaurants seem to have dropped the 99 cents from their prices, something supermarkets still practice.

Waiter Vusile brought my drink rapidly, and the fish just as I was finishing the complementary tiny bread buns with real butter.

The chips were crispy as requested –well done, in both senses!  The fish was tender and tasty, with enough sauce and a slice of lemon.  Detracting a bit, I found at least ten bones in the fish.  Vusile explained that the OB Fish (the cheapest on the menu) was difficult to debone, unlike the more expensive (R114) hake.  I've never had that problem before, so this seems a poor excuse.

Nevertheless, a pleasant lunch at one of the chains Judith and I used to frequent.  It brought back bittersweet memories.

Contact Details for Ocean BasketBack to top

**** Bosco Ristorante Italiano, Sunhill Centre, Sunninghill: Friday 13 January 2023

A single lunch, in memory of past good times.

Bradley brought the Appletiser promptly.

I ordered Linguine Alfredo, but I was probably thinking of tagliatelle. Tagliatelle is slightly wider than fettuccine, but thinner.  Linguine is thicker and narrower than either.  No matter, it still tasted good, very creamy, and was consumed with gusto and extra parmesan.

The restaurant was almost empty between noon and 1pm on a Friday. Staff were attentive: For much of the time they outnumbered the patrons.

Price: R156 before the tip (Appletiser R30, Alfredo R126).

Contact Details for Bosco Ristorante ItalianoBack to top

**** Ocean Basket Rivonia, Rivonia Village, Rivonia: 10 January 2020

Now licensed! We had their Dry White wine and Hot Chocolate, plus Famous Fish and chips and Whitebait with Calamari. The latter I found somewhat dry, however my partner was happy with his fish and chips. Good service from Metilia. This is definitely a family restaurant and worth a visit.

Contact Details for Ocean Basket RivoniaBack to top

***** Saigon Restaurant, Rivonia Junction: 30 November 2019

First venture in many years because of access problems, but worth the climb up the stairs. We ordered Appletiser and Durban Hills Sauvignon Blanc for drinks and shared the Duck Breast and noodles: A useful aspect for people with small appetites! The courtesy was very southeast Asian. Fortune looked after us well. A lovely place to go for a special meal and to enjoy the view. Recommended.

Contact Details for Saigon RestaurantBack to top

***** Taste of India Rivonia, Early Dawn Mall: 9 October 2019

This visit was long overdue. Thabis was a great waiter and she made sure that I kept my handbag away from easy access through the window. Mango Lassi was ordered - this is a great refreshing drink. Tall Horse Sauvignon Blanc was also ordered. We shared a Vegetarian Biryani. This was delicious and lasted for another meal at home.

Good portions, if too much for elderly customers, and excellent service make this a go-to restaurant.

Contact Details for Taste of India RivoniaBack to top

*** Ocean Basket, Rivonia Village: 4 October 2019

Newly opened replacing Pizza Luna, this restaurant was not yet licensed when we went there. Boulevard Cellars opposite helpfully filled the gap. The tables were dusty and the chairs had no cushions on them. Metilia gave good service and the Jupiter Meze platter that we shared was good. Can recommend for the food and hope that management improves.

Contact Details for Ocean BasketBack to top

**** Motherland Coffee Company, Cor 10th Ave & Rivonia Boulevard, Central Rivonia: 14 August 2019

Went there for coffee and a snack between doctors' visits! I had an Americano and their Avo Toast Classic. My partner had a Cappuccino and finished my toast, as I couldn't manage two slices. Avocado was good but too salty. Really busy coffee bar with good access to parking, friendly service by everyone there, but you have to go to the counter to place your order.

Can recommend for a midmorning break!

Contact Details for Motherland Coffee CompanyBack to top

***** Bosco Ristorante Italiano, Sunhill Shopping Centre: 19 July 2019

A return after a long break, still the warm friendly place with good food that we knew. Smanga took our order. Noble Savage Sauvignon Blanc and hot chocolate plus lasagne and Prawns Grigilia. The latter were so good, I had Tiramisu as my appetite was stimulated. Can recommend!

Contact Details for Bosco Ristorante ItalianoBack to top

***** Rivonia News Café, Rivonia Village, Rivonia: 09 July 2019

Out of hospital meal, which was much needed as the hospital food was horrid! Their Avo on Rye is great and was accompanied by a glass of Douglas Green Dry White. Partner had a cup of tea. Thandi's service was great as usual. Another place where everyone makes you feel welcome.

Contact Details for Rivonia News CaféBack to top

*** The Dros Sunninghill, The Square Sunninghill: 20 May 2019

It was difficult ordering here as they did not have everything on the menu. Worth visiting for the view though, I just pity the waiters.

Contact Details for The Dros SunninghillBack to top

**** Doppio Zero, Chilli Lane Shopping Centre, Sunninghill: 5 April 2019

Still somewhat noisy and rather cold as people kept leaving the door open. My partner had hot chocolate and I Robertson Chardonnay. Lasagne and salmon and Avocado on rye filled the gaps.

Victor was a great waiter. Really a place to go on a warm night!

Contact Details for Doppio ZeroBack to top

**** Shawnee Spur Steak Ranch, Chilli on Top Shopping Centre, Sunninghill: 3 January 2019

Our waitress was Precious and she was very good. One disappointment was the lack of Rump steak for the Seniors' menu - listed but not available. I had a pepper burger instead with spinach and my partner had ribs. His drink was Castle Free (it isn't free ??) whilst I had D'Aria Sauvignon Blanc. I received my birthday discount. The view across the valley is one really good reason for going to this restaurant

Contact Details for Shawnee SpurBack to top

**** BBQ Workshop, Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard: 18 July 2018

I enjoy this restaurant for its spicy food and great variety. This time I had Porcupine Ridge Chardonnay and my partner his hot chocolate. To eat, I ordered calamari and he falafel. Unfortunately he did not find them really to his taste. Service here is great and Abraham was on the ball

Contact Details for bbq WorkshopBack to top

*** OTG (Off the Grid) Bar and Kitchen, Cambridge Crossing, Paulshof: 14 June 2018

Drawback - smoky entrance and the non-smoking side is very small. Good range of pub food as well as steaks and a menu that made the wine hard to find! This is the place to go for Quiz nights and other fun events. Assisted by Muzi, who seemed to be involved with too many tables - it was the opening night of the World Cup after all!

Horror - no hot chocolate! So Capuccino was substituted. The Boschendal Boschen Blanc was a good choice as were my garlic snails. The bangers and mash were declared very good and the English mustard was hot. However this produced a stomach-ache afterwards.

Definitely a place for the sporty to go and have a good time.

Contact Details for Off The Grid (OTG) Bar and KitchenBack to top

**** Piza e Vino, Cambridge Crossing,  Paulshof: Thursday 7 June 2018

This is one great place to come to especially with children who can make their own piazzas. It's very good for the grown-ups as well. We came on the night when they have live music, which was a real treat. Here the hot chocolate is to be in awe of - a glass of hot milk is brought accompanied by a small jug of dark hot chocolate, so that you can mix the two to your preferred strength! I chose Flagstone Chardonnay - hey I'm really getting to know new wines these days!

My partner went for Pasta Napoletana and I for Calamari Fritti with a touch of chilli. Both dishes were excellent. Mduduzi's service and the attention of the managers as well make this a restaurant to recommend.

Contact Details for Piza e Vino RestaurantBack to top

**** Doppio Zero, Chilli Lane, Rivonia Road, Sunninghill: 1 June 2018

Prima Piatti has closed so Doppio Zero won us for the evening. Always a friendly restaurant to go to, if a little noisy! I ordered False Bay Chardonnay and my partner went for hot choclate. We then shared the oxtail, which was a really great choice. Rich and meaty and a worthy portion to feed two people!

Bongani gave us excellent service as well.

Contact Details for Doppio ZeroBack to top

**** Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane, Rivonia Road, Sunninghill: 25 May 2018

With easy access, this was an ideal venue for a leisurely dinner. We opted to share the Prawn and Fish combo, which served my desire for prawns and butter. These combos are good and have the useful side of providing for everyone's taste! The Ocean Basket Dry White in a carafe is a good drinkable wine and the hot chocolate went down well. We were feeling a little festive so ended up having a Kataifi and an Irish coffee.

Sharon Mguni was a great waiter and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.

Contact Details for Ocean BasketBack to top

**** Taste of India, Rivonia Boulevard: 30 March 2018

There seemed to be quite a big change from our previous visit some time ago, with new waiters. However, the Mango Lassi was as good as ever and the Tall Horse Sauvignon Blanc as well. We shared a Tandoori meat platter. This restaurant is as good as ever. Service from Bali was good.

Contact Details for Taste of IndiaBack to top

**** BBQ Workshop, Rivonia Village: 18 February 2018

A visit to FNB was why we visited here, as the process at FNB took over an hour! This is becoming a place to visit as it offers good food and excellent service. The one in Kyalami Corner is also very good.

Here I had Vrede and Lust Sauvignon Blanc and my partner had red Grapetiser. To eat we had meats balls and Falafel.

Contact Details for bbq WorkshopBack to top

**** Salsa Mexican Grill, Rivonia Village: 22 December 2017

Brand new and on the corner of Mutual Road and Rivonia Boulevard, Salsa presents a totally new way of eating! Check how hot the food is before ordering so that you don't get a shock! Fortunately I love hot but Rick doesn't. We ordered Appletiser and Darling Cellars Bush Vine Sauvignon Blanc --one I've not had before.  A very pleasant wine and well priced, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

To eat, I had the Fajita Steak, which very good and Rick ordered beef strips and Guacamole. The latter I tried and it was very good as well.

Rick found his dish unpleasantly hot. We were also taken aback at the idea of paying R15 for an empty bowl to put other food into.

This is a restaurant with a vibe, totally non-smoking and Simangaliso was an excellent waiter.  Thoroughly recommend it for a great night out.

Contact Details for Salsa Mexican GrillBack to top

**** Taste of India, Rivonia Boulevard: 3 November 2017

A visit to an old favourite to discover that it is now more formal with uniformed staff! Service is very good with Mani as our attentive waiter - I think there's been a revolution in standards throughout all restaurants!

For drinks we had Mango Lassi and Tall Horse Sauvignon Blanc. I had Chicken Tikka Masala and my partner Chicken Kadhai. Really good food and leftovers did meals on Saturday!

Contact Details for Taste of India.

**** Monkey Bluz, Rivonia Boulevard: 5 October 2017

This has replaced Rocket, which has moved to Hobart Grove and become Rockets! It has followed a growing trend to invest in really heavy chairs! Thobani was our waiter and proved very attentive. The atmosphere is definitely helped by good but not overloud music. However the smoking section leaks somewhat.

We ordered Appletiser and Porcupine Sauvignon Blanc. The latter is one of my favourites. My partner ordered the Blue Basket for one, which was not entirely successful as they did not have boerewors and replaced it with an unpleasant chilli cheesegriller. However the rest was enjoyed.

I ordered Tempura, which was a disaster. I simply could not eat it. After a discussion with the manager, it was replaced with the most heavenly and delicious grilled prawns in lemon butter sauce. I would thoroughly recommend this dish.

For attention to customer needs, they cannot be faulted. Definitely an adult restaurant for that special night out.

Contact Details for Monkey Bluz Restaurant and Cocktail Bar.

**** BBQ Workshop, Rivonia Village: 17 July 2017

A new experience and we shared the chicken Souvlakia! However, if you don't like it with chilli, which my partner didn't, please ask them to omit it! I enjoy chilli so it wasn't a problem. The hot ones were replaced without a problem. Drinks were hot chocolate and Robertson Sauvignon Blanc.

This a child friendly restaurant and Noliva's attention was great.

Contact Details for bbq Workshop.

** Thai Café, Cambridge Crossing, Paulshof: 28 April 2017

We decided to revisit this restaurant after not being there for a year. Sadly, things have changed. Not for the better. We ordered Leopard's Leap white wine and hot chocolate for drinks as it was chilly. Then we both opted for stir fried duck. Alas, this was a sadly bad choice.  The duck was overcooked and tough.  It put me off entirely. My partner replaced his with stir fried cashew chicken, which was pronounced tender, though the "mild" version was somewhat tasteless.

I think my disappointment killed my appetite.

Note: Thai Café has since closed, probably deservedly.

**** Taste of India, Early Dawn Mall, Rivonia Boulevard: 14 April 2017

We decided to visit after a long absence and opted for an early dinner. For drinks we chose Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc and sweet lassi. The former came with lots of ice! To eat, we chose the Tandoori Platter for two, which is excellent value for money. It was also thoroughly enjoyable.

Bali gave us excellent service, making for a great experience. For affordable, wonderfully cooked food, I can think of no better place to go.

Contact Details for Taste of India.

** Pizza Luna, Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard: 31 March 2017

We decided to revisit this restaurant after a long absence. It was a warm evening so we sat out side and discovered that they now have a children's play area. Children were making ample use of this, so parents, it a new venue for you!

We ordered a bottle of Alvi's Drift dry white wine and an Appletiser. Then mulled over the food options. I chose butter cooked calamari and my partner a large Gustosa pizza (the only size available). The latter came with lots of garlic, but not much salami for the price!  Sadly the calamari was disappointing and, despite attempts to attract attention for garlic or anything else, no response was forthcoming. The wine was good but the service was not.  Prices are now on the high side.

Contact Details for Pizza Luna and Luna Deli.

*** Doppio Zero, Chilli Lane Shopping Centre, Sunninghill: 25 February 2017

We intended to go to Primi Piatti, but the lift was out of order, so they lost out.

Our waiter was Enos and the welcome was friendly. As it was Saturday lunchtime, the restaurant was buzzing and busy.  I ordered Durban Savignon Blanc and my partner Appletizer to drink.  For eats, we chose from the Tapas menu. Blue Bay Mussels in white wine and cream sauce and Salmon and Sweet Potato Fishcakes with a ginger and chilli sauce.  The latter was approached with caution!

Crusty bread was served promptly with plenty of butter.  I am puzzled about why restaurants are changing to Lurpak Danish butter.  What have our cows done to have their butter moved off the menu?

The mussels were very good and the sauce creamy. One oddity, which I gave feedback on, was the onion included in it.  The fishcakes, though more sweet potato than fish, also proved a good choice and the sauce proved very edible.

Altogether a great experience! The restaurant is also child friendly.

Contact Details for Doppio Zero.

** Nino's Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard: 3 February 2017

We decided to take time out for a Friday lunch and visit Nino's. After going through the menu extensively, we decided to share the meatball baugette. Drinks were Appletiser and Two Oceans Sauvignon Blanc. Alas, not even Ollie's wonderful service could rescue the meatballs - they were indelibly dry. The onions and green peppers were great and the tomato sauce boiled away. That might explain the dry meatballs.  Nino's service is great and, generally, so is the food. Just avoid the meatball baguette :). 

Contact Details for Nino's.

***** Pizza del Forno, Chilli on Top, Sunninghill: 6th January 2017

This is fairly recently opened restaurant in this centre and has a very reasonably priced menu. There is an outside smoking area for people who don't like tasting their food. They do a very good House Dry White wine, the other drink was Appletiser.  Sandile was our waiter and attentive, brining plenty of ice for both drinks. I chose the Mussels in Creamy Garlic Sauce but asked that the Mozzarella be omitted and my partner chose the Pollo Fantastico.  The Mussels arrived with Foccacia which came in handy for my partner later! They were excellent, though I did remark that I would have liked more garlic. I was told that they tried not to overdo it as some people are not such afficiandos of the Rose!

My partner's Pollo Fantastico, which consisted of chicken breasts, bacon, avocado, roast veggies and a decoration of a tomato sitting on a cucumber, was declared fantastico indeed.  I stole some avocado, which was delicious.  Altogether a great experience with excellent service and worth another visit!

Contact Details for Pizza Del Forno.

***** Luca's Ristorante Italiano, Rivonia Crossing 2, Achter Road, Paulshof: 25 June 2016

A very special night out after a successful trip to Bloemfontein and a good sense of timing, as we went when the rugby was on.  This meant the place was quiet!.  Drinks were hot chocolate, Spritzer and Buiten Blanc.  Sylvester impressed immediately by knowing what a Spritzer was.  Mains were fresh River Trout, Lasagne and a medium Frutti de Mare Pizza.  The latter produced the remark that, "if this is medium, how big is the large?"

The trout came with spinach and was excellent.  The lasagne was pronounced very good.  For once, we made space for dessert and ordered Cheese Cake, a Double Choc Crunch and a Banting Choc Almond Triangle.  All were approved by the person ordering.  My Choc Almond Triangle lasted until Sunday lunch it was such a generous helping and my trout is still going!

Sylvester's service was on the ball.  Great value for money and great place for a special meal!

Contact Details for Luca's Ristorante Italiano.

**** Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane, Rivonia Road, Sunninghill: 12 June 2016

It was a long time returning to this branch and we chose a really cold day to do it.  The inside heater was not the most effective.  Hot chocolate and Van Loveren River Red did a good job of warming us up however –and Sifiso's great service!  I indulged in their Prawn and mussels offering - absolutely the best!  The stir-fried veggies were rather tasteless however.  Rick enjoyed the OB Fish and chips.

.Still a great place to go to and reasonable prices make for good value.

Contact Details for Ocean Basket.

**** Zio G, The Core, Leeukop Road off Kikuyu Road, Sunninghill: 29 April 2016

After going around restaurants in Sunninghill that we hadn't visited, we found Zio G in the Core. This place has changed ownership a lot.  It has also caused noise problems in the past :). However this night, we got excellent service from Lerato plus my favourite wine, Buitenverwachting Buiten Blanc.  Somehow, I need to find smaller portions of Calamari Salad.  Or, in fact, anything else. My partner's chicken breast was consumed with vigour!

This is a very good restaurant with excellent service.

Contact Details for Zio G Craft.

*** Off the Grid, Cambridge Crossing, Paulshof: 26 February 2016

Once again without Tango the trainee Guide Dog, who had had a busy day, we decided to give my partner a night off from cooking, as he has been doing all the cooking and washing up whilst my back recovers from the falls I had early in the month.  This pub does a wide range of beers including a non-alcoholic one.  If you are a lover of single malts, it's worth a visit as their prices are inviting!

So my partner had a real change with a Becks non-alcoholic beer whilst I ordered the Porcupine Ridge Sauvignon Blanc - one of my favourites. His order was simple - Chicken Schnitzel with mushroom sauce and the chips were crispy.  However they were also smothered in some kind of spice.  We were assured there was no MSG.  I do feel that the use of spices on chips is not OK especially when there is no mention of it on the menu.

I ordered the chicken fillet part of the chicken burger with a small salad.  The first time round, it came covered in basting sauce.  Byron quickly got this rectified!  We Banters can be a pain in the life of restaurateurs!

It is a noisy place, as you would expect with a pub.  They have live music on Friday nights at least (didn't ask about over the weekend).  Only other moan - the smoke from the bar tends to drift into the non-smoking area occasionally.

It is definitely a popular venue for after work drinks!

Contact Details for Off The Grid.

**** Calice, Petervale Shopping Centre: 12 February 2016

This is the revamped Senza and it has retained its downstairs function room.  There is an extensive bar and they do a wide range of cocktails.  The menu is expensive including their wines. I think we are going to see steep rises in restaurant prices this year following the budget as well.

We ordered Stone Town Sauvignon Blanc - a new one to me - and Appletizer.  The Sauvignon Blanc was very good.  I asked for grilled Cajun baby calamari with salad and my partner had Spaghetti Carbonara, which had too much pepper and had to be replaced.  Both can be recommended.  Knowledge's service was slightly lax and things did take their time to happen.

Contact Details for Calice.

**** Milhaus Food & Wine Bar, Kyalami on Main Shopping Centre, R55 Kyalami Main Road corner Dytchley Rd: 30 January 2016

Two very hungry people left a seminar in Midrand and stopped off at this shopping centre in search of lunch!  We first tried Rocomama's but the noise and lack of attention drove us out.  Their loss was Milhaus' gain and ours. Again a restaurant with a view back south over Sandton.  It is also a very creative one!

They do a "Flight of Wine" to introduce you to their extensive range of wines for R50!  I should have written my choices down.  They were all excellent white wines.  My partner had a fresh Strawberry juice which smelt wonderful.  He had their hake and chips whilst I had their French Burger.  This had to be sent back as the menu did not indicate that it came smothered in sweet sauces.  The sauceless one was perfectly Bleu and had a good salad with it.

Clever was our very courteous waiter.  This is worth going to again for a special occasion.

Contact Details:, Reservations: 011 466 0128.

**** Shawnee Spur Steak Ranch, Chilli on Top, corner Rivonia and Leeuwkop Roads: 29 January 2016

Complete with Tango, our Guide Dog Puppy in training, we went to this relatively new centre and to the Shawnee Steak Ranch.  We are now really good at explaining what a puppy in training is and why she needs exposure to as many experiences as possible.  She always wears her official uniform and we carry her letter of authority with us as well. She also gives us an opportunity to introduce people who are scared of dogs to a puppy more likely to lick them!

We were greeted in a really friendly manner - this restaurant goes out of its way to make you feel welcome!  It has a view west across the valley.  Thomas was our host and Rebecca was our waiter.  We ordered Appletizer and Misty Kloof Sauvignon Blanc.  The latter was a well-priced and very drinkable wine.  To eat, we chose from the Senior menu as we qualify!  I ordered the Rump Steak with spinach and my partner the Spare Ribs.  The steak was impressively Bleu and the ribs were declared very good.

Altogether a good experience and the restaurant is very family friendly with a great view.

Contact Details for Shawnee Spur.

***** Thai Cafe, Cambridge Crossing, Paulshof: 15 January 2016

Now that we have a Guide Dog Puppy in training, we have a new challenge - explaining to people why she has to come into restaurants with us!  The staff at Thai Cafe were great and the other guests came to talk with us; Tango the pup got lots of attention.

Sarah was a great waiter and organised our Leopard's Leap Merlot and Appletiser speedily, plus some water for Tango!  Leopard's Leap is such a good Merlot and went very well with the Basil Duck stir fry and the Massaman Curry. The Chicken Cashew Nut and noodles was also praised. All in all, a great experience which we will repeat!

Contact Details for Thai Café.

**** Pizza Luna, Rivonia Village: 17 October 2015

After a long time away, we returned and were greeted like old friends!  I decided to indulge in Lambrusco, an Italian sparkling wine that I had not had for many years.  It was beautiful.  Rick chose to have mango juice.  My starter calamari were overcooked and quickly replaced, without batter as well.  This time they were perfect although the side salad was more than I could manage!  Rick's Alfredo was pronounced good.

Again a restaurant with a view, albeit of Rivonia Boulevard.  It is pleasant to dine outside and enjoy our wonderful climate.

Contact Details for Pizza Luna and Luna Deli.

***** Bosco, Sunhill Centre, 24 July 2015

We had not been there for a very long time and it was like visiting old friends!  Not the warmest of nights, but a warm welcome and a laugh over Rick's name not being understood.  Hot chocolate was in order for him and a glass of Simonsvlei Lifestyle Merlot for me.  Food - a return to a good Italian Lasagne to Rick and an excellent Calamari Insalata for me.  Both were excellent.  The olive oil was wonderful.

Good service and a good atmosphere made the evening a pleasure.  I rounded it off with a sugarless Irish Coffee - just felt like the best ending!

Contact Details for Bosco Ristorante Italiano.

**** Vintage India, Autumn Road and Louise Terrace, off 12th Avenue, Rivonia: 27 April 2015

Hiding away, in a little park behind Bamboo, is this restaurant we spotted on our way to Soweto in the morning.  As that trip did not take as long as expected, we decided to investigate!  We slipped through between the wooden fence and the wall on the Autumn Street side and went into what appears to be a converted house.  The space is well filled with tables and unusual chairs which are quite heavy but comfortable.  The service was instantly attentive and we ordered a Tomato Cocktail and a glass of Red House Wine.  Then we went through the extensive menu.

This is laid out differently, in a table with the curry sauces on the left hand side and the choice of vegetable, cheese, meats or fish across the top.  The choices are extensive and priced between R59 and R89 with some dishes somewhat more expensive.  In the end I ordered a Chicken Tikka starter, and my partner Chicken Makhani.

The Chicken Tikka was good and spicy to hot.  It was served with lettuce and a generously juicy slice of lemon.  The Chicken Makhani, which came with Basmati rice, looked, smelt, and was pronounced good.  The red wine is worth drinking - very smooth and pleasant!

Altogether, good food and excellent service with the bonus of being excellent value for money!  We will call again.

Contact Details for Vintage India.

**** Caffe Della Salute, 17 Autumn Road, off Rivonia Road, Rivonia: 31 December 2014

As promised, we went back for lunch, this time on a really perfect day!  The greeting was professional and welcoming.  The restaurant was not particularly busy and we were able to find a table by the window and keep cool.  We ordered an Appletiser and their Protea Sauvingon Blanc.  The latter proved to be a very pleasant wine indeed and was served with plenty of ice.

To eat, I chose the Sailor's Curry, replete with prawns, and my companion the Snob pasta.  Both were excellent and very filling.  Altogether a very enjoyable lunch with excellent service.  Will definitely return!

Caffe Della Salute has, sadly, closed.

** Caffe Della Salute, 17 Autumn Road, off Rivonia Road, Rivonia: 6 September 2014

Feeling peckish and also wanting to find out what had replaced the Spur on Autumn and Rivonia Road, we went to this new restaurant for Saturday lunch.  Although most of the children's play area has gone, a jungle gym still exists.  The rest of the restaurant has been done over and made minimalist.  The colours of grey and white are used to good effect.  The menu is extensive.  I choose the mussels in white wine and garlic sauce whilst my companion choose the basic burger.

He took a risk and chose Bos Mango Tea whilst I stuck to dry white wine by the glass.  The tea was acceptable as was the wine.  Alas the food was not.  The mussels came with white bread, which was replaced on request and their sauce was mostly flour.  The plain burger came with a vicious "secret sauce" which my companion suggested was best kept secret.

However, after much discussion on possible improvements to the food, we were not charged for either dish!  We will go back to see if things have improved.  Service was very good and the owner open to feedback.

Caffe Della Salute has, sadly, closed.

*** The Raj, Rivonia Junction, Rivonia Boulevard: 8 August 2014

A visit after many months of neglecting this restaurant, we booked and climbed the stairs to find that a number of changes had been made in our absence.  The worst was very uncomfortable chairs.  However, the menu looked good and the service was friendly.  We ordered a Mango Lassi and some BR unoaked Chardonnay.  I should have written down the winery's name.  Both drinks were declared very good!

To eat we decided to shared the Chef's Special which was chicken and prawn curry, to be served medium.  Sadly the combination did not cook well together as the prawns were overdone and soggy.  The chicken was fine but the temperature was distinctly mild.  The basmati rice was a good accompaniment.

Overall very good service and a relaxed atmosphere; next time I would try something different.

Contact Details for The Raj Indian Restaurant.

**** Pizza Luna, Shop 10, Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard: 2 August 2014

Newly renovated and expanded, Pizza Luna has an extended menu to match!  The outside area promises and delivers sunny relaxed dining.  With a yearning for seafood, I took a seat in the sun only to discover that there was no calamari.  Rafaele was quick to respond to this disaster and offered prawns as a substitute.  They came as a Godfather pasta, which was extremely good although there was more pasta than I can manage!  Accompanied by dry white wine, of good quality and complimented by follow up desert of Tiramisu, which was a little disappointing as it lacked liqueur.  I can recommend the coffee.  Pure indulgence for a change - I left replete and happy.

Contact Details for Pizza Luna and Luna Deli.

**** Adega, Rivonia Crossing 2, Achter Road, Paulshof: 21 June 2014

It has been some months since we visited Adega in its new premises and the restaurant remains as friendly as we remembered.  On a cold solstice night, we ventured out to eat and found a warm place to do it.  Not only in temperature but also in service.  Freedom certainly made us welcome and made sure that our drinks –hot chocolate and Festa Sauvignon Blanc– arrived promptly.

We chose prawn rissoles for a shared starter and they proved good with a strong touch of chili.  Mains were Fettuccini Chourico and the starter Mussels.  The Chourico pasta was declared very good.  The Mussels were plump and the sauce extremely tasty.  For once I was tempted and fell for the chocolate mousse, which was a perfect ending to a delightful meal.

Altogether a very pleasant evening with attentive but not intrusive service.  Worthwhile going to for special occasions as well –lots of room for parties!

Adega Restaurant Rivonia has since closed.

* 310 Sustainable Eatery, upstairs in Cambridge Crossing, Stonehaven Road off Witkoppen Road, Paulshof, 22 March 2014

The replacement for Adega has stripped down the venue into great views and minimalist decor.  The staff are wonderfully friendly, which they need to be given that many things on the menu are not available.  In the drinks line, we ended up with Appletiser and Buitenverwachting Buiten Blanc.  I ordered a Parfait off the starter menu and my partner ordered the Beef Guinness Pie.  The latter would take 40 minutes to prepare, so we had a wait ahead of us.

There were no suggestions of salads or anything else to cover the wait - a selling opportunity completely missed.  Nor did they suggest serving my meal early.  After the promised forty minutes, the pie was served, with its veggies and really crispy chips as requested.  My Parfait had to be asked for before I was served.  Big failure here which I was perturbed by - and then the problems started.  The Parfait was horribly salty and the chutney that accompanied it was unbearably sweet.  I sent it back and could not face ordering anything else.  I elected to have some of my partner's pie.

We both agreed that the pie was dry - did they cook the Guinness out of it?  It certainly seems so.  I also found it very salty.

I think the "sustainability" here is encased in salt.  Wonderful people out front let down by their people behind the scenes.

Contact Details for 310 Sustainable Eatery. (Not disabled friendly: Stairs only.)

* The Slug and Lettuce, Rivonia Oriental City, Rivonia Boulevard cor Ninth Avenue, Rivonia, February 2014 Back to top

Fond memories of happy Sunday lunches brought us back to the "Slug".  Sadly, it was not to be.

Having procured wine and Appletiser, and ordered oxtail (a rare delicacy) we found that, in the spite of the fact that we were in the non-smoking section at the end of the restaurant furthest from Rivonia Boulevard, smoke was drifting through the restaurant to us from the smokers on Rivonia Boulevard.  When nothing was done about this, we called the manager.  He stoutly maintained that the smokers were "outside", did not need to be screened off from the rest of the restaurant, and that it was perfectly fine for us to breathe their smoke.  We left in high dudgeon.  At least he said we did not need to pay for the drinks –we had not intended to anyway!

*** News Café, Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard cor Ninth Avenue, Rivonia, February 2014 Back to top

We then walked over the road to the News Cafe, which was as welcoming as the Slug had been hostile.  No oxtail, unfortunately, and we had quite an appetite by this time.  We settled for fish and chips.  The fish was good; the chips inevitably had to be sent back to be "well done, crispy" as ordered, and still weren't.  We would nevertheless recommend News Cafe for its friendly service and attention to its customers.

Contact Details for Rivonia News Café.

** Ghazal, The Square Sunninghill, 25 October 2013

I had been there on my own many months ago and was extremely disappointed with this food.  However, my partner suggested we give it another try and booked.  We arrived and were greeted then escorted to our table.  The usual drinks orders were placed and we opted to share their Tandoori Chicken.  To my dismay, the chicken was salty.  The usual beautiful flavours of Tandoori were subsumed.  Upon complaining, I was brought a yogurt drink which also proved to be salty.  We paid and left through clouds of smoke from the smoking area.

Not our best experience and for me not a place to go to again.

Contact Details for Ghazal.

**** Luca's Pizzeria at Rivonia Crossing 2, 13 October 2013

A desire for an outside lunch took us out again on Sunday, this time to Luca's, which we had not visited since it moved from the old Morningside Shopping Centre.  It is a friendly venue, deceptively larger than it looks from the outside.  What was obvious is that it is a well-attended venue with people coming to celebrate anniversary and take advantage of the children's playground (which is supervised), to let their children have a good time as well.

When I saw fresh river trout on the menu, my mind turned away from pizza!  So it was one trout and one Padovana pizza that were chosen, together with Delaire Graaf Rose and Appletizer!  The Delaire Graaf Rose is a lovely pink wine, which went well with the trout.  The trout was good, but a little drier than I really like.  The pizza was declared excellent.  I can also recommend the coffee!

Good service and a pleasant venue to while away a sunny afternoon.

Contact Details for Luca's Ristorante Italiano.

* A Strange Experience - Vasili's at Rivonia Junction, Rivonia Boulevard and Mutual Road, 29 September 2013

The volatile Vasili and his restaurant have moved from the Morningside Wedge to Rivonia Junction.  We visited yesterday and found the squid heads good, however I perhaps foolishly decided to go back today.  The restaurant comes over as far more relaxed and Greek than at the Wedge.  The waiters are great and enthusiastic.  I ordered Lamb Schawarma.  Well they don't do schawarma –no pita! Instead a wrap and, I suspect, fresh fried with LOTS of salt lamb.  Sent it back and had (you guessed) beautiful squid heads with thyme and lemon.

Then I got too confident and ordered Galaktoboureko and coffee.  It is the first time I have EVER had a salty dessert!  It was totally disastrous and any true Greek confectioner should be hunting down the person who has destroyed one of the most exquisite Greek desserts.

The coffee was wonderful as was the service.  Pity about the food.

Vasili's Restaurant has since closed.

*** Adega Rivonia, Rivonia Crossing 2, off Achter Road, Paulshof - 23 August 2013

This restaurant replaces an earlier steak restaurant that closed some time ago.  We had not booked, but this was no barrier to entry and we were greeted by the manageress and assured that a table could be found.  We were seated towards the back and immediately attended to by Kenneth, who gave us menus and the wine list.  Wines are reasonably priced from around R89 for Festa Sauvignon Blanc upwards.  The range is good.  Not having tried Fest Sauvignon Blanc, I decided on that.  It turned out to be a very pleasant experience.  My companion stuck firmly to Appletizer.

He also decided on Spare Ribs, much missed as we haven't really been to meat restaurants very often.  I ordered snails in garlic butter and Prawn Tempura.  The ribs were declared very good but the chips failed the really crispy test.  My snails were excellent and probably protected us from marauding vampires for the next two nights at least!  The prawn tempura batter was a disappointment being rather thick and, I suspect, not made from rice flour.  The prawns themselves were good.

Kenneth gave excellent service and the atmosphere was easy going.  Children are allowed and they were all behaving well.  We would go again and recommend Adega Rivonia to others.

Contact Details for Adega Restaurant Rivonia.

** Pizza Luna, Rivonia Village, 24 June 2013

One of our favourite places, sadly not at their best this time.

Contact Details for Pizza Luna.

***** The Slug and Lettuce, Oriental Square Rivonia, Rivonia Boulevard & 9th Avenue, 9 June 2013

This has become a really friendly and welcoming venue as we discovered when we arrived for Sunday lunch!  The attention of everyone from the manager down was exemplary.  We opted to have the Sunday Roast and the Hake and Chips.  For drinks, a mango juice and Darling Sauvignon Blanc by the glass were chosen.  The Sauvignon Blanc is becoming one of my favourites.

The meat for the roast was beef and pork with roast potatoes, rice too(?), and copious vegetables.  Somehow I have never got my head around two starches unless the second one is Yorkshire pud.  The Hake was utterly sublime and the best I have had for ages.  Really didn't need the chips.

A very clean plate announced a good tasty Sunday Roast, and this was confirmed as well.

For a great experience on a Sunday - highly recommended!

Contact Details for The Slug and Lettuce, Rivonia.

**** Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane Shopping Centre, Sunninghill, 27 April 2013

An urgent need for fish and chips turned our tracks to the nearest Ocean Basket, which, for us, is in Chilli Lane.  We were seated quickly inside as it was quite a cool day and ordered Taramasalata to share.  The wine by the glass options are very good and I opted for the Robertson Sauvignon Blanc, which was very good.  Rick had his usual Appletizer.  The Taramasalata was good and arrived quickly.

Then the fish and chips came - cooked to perfection with the chips being really crispy.  The lemon butter sauce could have been more generous, but that our only complaint!  Prince gave excellent service.

It was good to find that this restaurant had regained its previous good standing, as I had been disappointed the last time I was there.  They have live music on Sunday lunches and are family friendly.

Contact Details for Ocean Basket.

* Browns Restaurant,  Wessels Road, Rivonia: 28th November 2012

Alas, how the mighty have fallen!  A business lunch for 15 people proved a major disappointment.  The service left a lot to be desired - an hour to serve our main course and over 20 minutes to even bring bread to the table.  One person had to leave before his dessert arrived and the waiters had to be reminded to bring dessert.  People were left without drinks.

The food was extremely disappointing - the fancy descriptions on the menu fell far short of reality.  Rice was the only "vegetable".  At R185 a head, this was not good value at all.  I certainly will not visit again.

Contact Details for Browns Restaurant.

*** Taste of India, Rivonia Boulevard, 2nd November 2012

You might think we love curry - only too true because I do!  Standard hot chocolate and a good dry white wine accompanied by their samoosas - vegetable this time - set the evening up for relaxation.  We decided to share a Lamb Korma and a Garlic Nan.  Well there was a slight mess up here - the Nan never arrived and was duly credited back.

However the Lamb Korma was wonderful.  Service needs jacking up a bit.  We can really recommend the food.

Contact Details for Taste of India.

***** Casa da Galina, The Codfather Group of Restaurants, 1st Ave corner Rivonia Road, 19 September 2012

A late night meal after a presentation and discussion at Wits seemed in order as the snacks were very salty there.  Casa Galina is a restaurant in the Codfather group and has a Portuguese flavour.  The service is excellent and waiters have a real sense of humour!  The non-smoking area was nearly deserted and the electricity went on and off initially.  Then the lights came on for the rest of the evening - Eskom or a kitchen fault?  Who's complaining.

We ordered hot chocolate and Spier Savignon Blanc, plus a Prego roll and clams.  Sadly no clams and none were available at Food Lovers today either.  Changed the order to Lullas Calamari.  Gloria, our waitress, organised everything perfectly.  The Prego was excellent, the calamari superb.  Her hearty laugh at our jokes made the evening great and the wine was excellent

Casa da Galinha has since closed.

***** Saigon Vietnamese Restaurant: Rivonia Junction, Rivonia Boulevard off 9th Avenue, Rivonia, 6 July 2012

A return after many years as it is one of our business partner's favourites and we were celebrating a good year of sales!  We sat "outside" with views across Rivonia and indulged ourselves totally.  Our partner ordered his favourite Roast Duck, my partner ordered Chicken Cashew and I ordered the Ginger Prawns.  We also ordered Noodle Bean Sprouts and Steamed Rice. 

Our wine was a Hartfontein Sauvignon Blanc which was totally glorious.

The service is discreet and attentive.  The food is heavenly.  My prawns were the best I have had anywhere, whilst the duck would happily feed two people.  Booking is essential nights and weekends.

We completed a very enjoyable lunch with espressos and grappa.  Highly recommended for business lunches or real celebrations!

Contact Details for Saigon Restaurant.

*** Lucky Moo: Rivonia Village, Rivonia Boulevard off 9th Avenue, Rivonia, 3 March 2012

New Chinese restaurant with a great logo!  We sat outside and ordered chicken spring rolls to share, Appletiser, and Exotic Lemon and ginger tea, plus Oyster Beef Sesame and General Tao's Prawns.  Spring rolls were good as was the tea and oyster beef,  however the prawns were horribly sweet which only kicked in after the chilli when I had consumed most of them.  I pointed the sweetness out to our waiter Bridgette who said she would bring it to management's attention.

They are not licensed as yet, but are working on it.

A very pleasant place to go with truly welcoming staff, just need to sort out the sugar!

No Contact Details: Lucky Moo has since closed.

*** The Slug and Lettuce, Rivonia Boulevard and 9th Avenue, Rivonia, 1 October 2011

A real pub atmosphere abounds here in the evenings and a young crowd is attracted by the no nonsense food.  We had bockwurst and chips and hake and chips.  Both excellent although the bockwurst was a portion larger than I could manage.  White wine by the glass was good and cold.

I would recommend this for a good Friday night out for the under 40s!  Service was good and friendly

Contact Details for The Slug and LettucePrevious review.

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*** The Codfather, corner 1st Ave and Rivonia Road, Rivonia, 28 August 2011

This restaurant is divided into little hideaway places which makes it quite intimate.  I went there for lunch and indulged in the Cajun calamari starter and the Clams which were done Portuguese style.  Both dishes were very good and the seasoning was spot on.  However, the portion of clams would have been plenty so I'll remember for next time!

Their service was good and the Brampton Sauvignon by the glass excellent.  I would recommend it again!

Contact Details for The Codfather. Previous Review.

**** JHB Grill, corner Witkoppen and Achter Roads, Paulshof, 26 August 2011

This restaurant is large and airy.  It was very well patronised on that night as well.  Not surprising as the food was good.  We shared a calamari starter which was excellent and then had beef burgers which were enormous!  Rick had mushroom and I had Madagascar pepper sauce.  The latter could have been hotter but both burgers were good and accompanied by potato wedges and vegetables.

Their service was good and the white wine by the glass more than acceptable.  Their filter coffee was excellent.  I would recommend it, even though it is pricey as it would suit a special occasion!

JHB Grill has since closed.

(no stars) Santi's Ristaurante, The Square Shopping Centre, Naivasha Road, Sunninghill, 26 August 2011

This restaurant is situated on the mezzanine floor of the centre with a balcony looking out over the lower levels.  We had booked a non-smoking table and arrived on time.  This first noticeable thing was the smell of cigarette smoke which infused the whole place.  We asked for a table which was not affected and none was forthcoming.  On speaking to the manager, he informed us that "I only work here".  We turned around and left.

Contact Details for Santi's Ristaurante.

*** Taste of Punjab, Sunhill Shopping Centre corner Corner Tana and Naivasha Roads, Sunninghill, 29 July 2011

This restaurant is quite small and intimate.  On a very cold night, we tried it out as Bosco was fully booked.  They provided excellent samoosas in the new style - pastry triangles filled with vegetables not the thin pastry style but more solid.  However these were good.  We then shared a half Tandoori Chicken which was enlivened by my request for lemon otherwise it would have been very dry.  In London, the north Indian Restaurants did the most beautiful Tandoori Chicken served on an abundant salad with lots of lemon in the 1970s.  Here lemons are cheap and so is salad - why don't we have a similar sublime food?

Their service was good and the white wine by the glass more than acceptable.  I would recommend it, just ask for lemon!

Contact Details for Taste of Punjab.

**** The Slug and Lettuce, corner Rivonia Boulevard and 9th Avenue Rivonia, 31 July 2011

This unusually-named restaurant has taken the space formally used by News Cafe, which has moved into Rivonia Village on the opposite corner.  I went there on a quiet Sunday and found the place very inviting.  The smoking section is firmly closed off and smoke is excluded from the rest of the restaurant by a very noisy air conditioner.  As I was sat beside it, this detracted from the ambience.

Brilliant came to serve me and I opted for the Calamari Tapas and a glass of white wine.  He brought the wine with a huge box of popcorn, which was standard issue to all tables, so this will really work for your children!  The Calamari Tapas was saltier than I would have liked but the Tartare sauce was home-made and great!  This created further interest and I followed up with the Garlic Snails, which were very good.  A good cup of coffee rounded off the experience!

I did feel that the wine was overpriced at R28 a glass as it did not seem to be of a quality equal to this.  Otherwise the service was friendly and I wish them every success.

Contact Details for The Slug and Lettuce, Rivonia.

**** Casa da Galinha, 1st Avenue, Rivonia, 3 June 2011

On a cold Friday afternoon, we meet one of our best suppliers for lunch at the Codfather cluster of restaurants and chose Casa da Galinha.  The place was empty except for an outside table and very cold.  However the staff were great and organised a heater.  They also turned down the music after a number of requests, which meant we could actually have a conversation!

We ordered a bottle of Beyerskloof Pinotage, which arrived at the right temperature and was, as usual, excellent.  The truly cold of us ordered Caldo Verde, the beautiful green Portuguese soup, and were not disappointed.  It was hot and tasty and the bread was good too.  This was followed by calamari with lemon butter sauce (a bit lacking) and spare ribs, which were tasty but a bit dry.  The calamari were good and a good portion size.

We finished off with Tiramisu and Cream Caramel, plus coffee.  All excellent.

Casa da Galinha has since closed.

* Primi Piatti, Chilli Lane Shopping Centre, off Rivonia Road, Sunninghill

Sadly, the worst meal ever.  So let's start with what worked - good hot chocolate on a cold night, good gas fired heater on the west wall, friendly waiters and, lest I forget, a good Sauvignon Blanc.

We chose a table close to the heater as did most of the patrons, because it was a chilly night in Autumn and the place was definitely lacking customers –is this because Chilli Lane is getting a reputation as a crime hotspot?  As a CPF member, I think this may be the case as I attend the meetings every Monday and this centre comes up regularly.

Then we go down to the food.  Lumpy bread with Danish butter; we produce excellent butter here.  Then the chicken livers which were supposed to be flavoured with garlic and chilli.  The only flavour was salt.  This is the hypertension restaurant of the year for its starter!

I asked that my calamari did not have salt added.  Well it did.  Here I was expecting garlic and chilli and all I got was salt, salt, salt!  Even in the replacement dish.

My partner's feedback on his dish (Panacetta with linguine) is a classic: "a combination of the flavours of tomato, bacon, basil and bay leaf so carefully balanced that they exactly failed to please".  I tried his dish and totally agree with him.

Salt is a condiment, NOT a spice.  Equally garlic and chillies are not spices.  This restaurant seriously does not understand food.

Contact Details for Primi Piatti.

**** The Ocean Basket, Chilli Lane Shopping Centre, off Rivonia Road, Sunninghill

Oh Sunday nostalgia with live music from a musician into sixties and seventies songs! This made for a relaxing lunch in a centre that bubbles with life and kids charging around the place.  Service is great and attentive, with perfect timing to ask how your meal is - not when you have your mouth full but when you are pausing between munches!

Indulged in a fish and calamari combo, which had succulent fish and slightly overdone calamari.  The chips were a disaster but was too busy listening to the music to complain.  Chardonnay by the glass is excellent.  Would recommend that they don't put so much salt in their sauces - perhaps liaise with Fourways and Pietermaritzburg on this matter?

Overall, a wonderfully relaxing chill out Sunday lunch - will go again.

Contact Details for Ocean Basket.

*** Taste of India, Early Dawn Centre, cor Rivonia Boulevard and 9th Ave, Rivonia

This restaurant has replaced Global Wrapps and serves a selection of North and South Indian foods plus Bunny Chows!  They have tables outside and do not charge corkage for wine.  They are unlicensed and Halaal.  We decided to try them on the day after Boxing day and arrived early.  We chose an outside table and were greeted by the friendly manager.  We shared their vegetable samoosas - which were not the normal triangles but rather pyramids and somewhat doughy.  For main course, I had the vegetarian Biriyani and Rick the chicken Korma.  The latter came with rice.  Both dishes were excellent.  The service was good and we wish this new venture all the best.

Contact Details for Taste of India.

*****Casa Galinha at the CodFather 1st Avenue, 14th August 2010

This restaurant has been revamped since my last visit some years back.  The service is welcoming and excellent - always a pleasure when I am on my own!  A starter portion of calamari in lemon butter was accompanied by a glass of chardonnay.  The quality of the dish was such that my appetite was perked up!  So I followed it with a Portuguese salad.  This consisted of lettuce, avocado, cucumber and tomatoes.  It was fresh and extremely good with a little black pepper added.

A place to go for a quiet lunch or to take a special friend.  Thoroughly enjoyed my experience and will go again.

On leaving the restaurant, I looked in on the CodFather Foodhall and meet Chris who runs All Bottled Up as part of it.  Here they sell almond trees, herbs and beautiful oils.  A haven of enchantment and full of great ideas for gifts.  All Bottled Up's unique green take is to encourage customers to take their own bottles in for filling with the oils of their choices (all South African, only the Balsamic Vinegar is imported).  The shop's mascot is Carma Chameleon, who insists they pack everything for donations to CLAW (Community Led Animal Welfare) instead of charging.

Casa da Galinha has since closed.

* Larry's in the Euro Centre, 363 Rivonia Boulevard (30 April 2010)

Sadly a restaurant that misses out on business, because the owner does not enable his waiter to offer customers anything!  As the bill was also whipped away, exact descriptions of what we ate are not possible.  My companion ordered the Duck and Cherry pie and requested crispy chips.  I wish he would stop ordering crispy chips or indeed chips at all, as they never are.  The pie was largely air - a pastry crust well above the contents hiding at the bottom of the dish.  It tasted OK but did not justify its price.

I had the fish and chips, which were also OK but not exciting.  The white wine was pleasant.  I would have liked to order coffee, however the opportunity did not arrive and we asked for the bill and left.

Great place to go if you are a close friend of the owner, otherwise disappointing.

(No Contact Details for Larrys: It has since closed.)

** The Codfather Restaurant, 1st Avenue, Rivonia (9 April 2010)

A return to an old favourite following a desire for fish, turned out not to be the evening out intended.  The waiters do not wear name tags, nor did ours bother to give us his name. Their extensive wine list is notable for the items out of stock, so finding a wine was challenging.  We shared the vegetarian spring rolls with plum sauce and then went to select our fish.  I choose the squid complete with tentacles and Rick chose Yellowtail.  We were offered a choice of chips, rice or vegetables.  I went for the vegetables and Rick for well-done, crispy chips.

Our dishes duly arrived.  Rick's chips were far from well-done and he took the dish back.  My squid were very salty, but, as I had failed to request no salt, I did not complain.  Rick's dish returned, but the fish was now cooked beyond edible and the chips no better.  The manager, Charles, eventually arrived and replaced the entire dish with one to order, but then did not check that it was acceptable (the fish was now excellent and the chips almost acceptable).

The Rhebokskloof Chenin Blanc proved to be an excellent choice.  When we asked for the bill, the manager came to our table again to discuss the meal.  I brought up the problem of the very salty squid.  He said that they did not use salt, but it might been the Fish Spice causing the problem.  He went on to ask if we had been asked how we wanted our fish prepared?  We said that we had only been offered chips, rice or vegetables and nothing was said about preparation.  This brought more apologies and a promise to instruct his staff to be aware of what they are supposed to do.  The waiter, Paul, had forgotten to add the starter to our bill, but Charles did so with alacrity when it was pointed out.

The restaurant has been revamped and was very attractive with the candles lit.  The atmosphere was warm and friendly on a cold wet night.  Certainly the manager's attention somewhat saved the evening for us and we now know what to ask for in future!

Contact Details for The Codfather.

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Shopping centres with restaurants in the area: 90° on Rivonia, The Wedge, Morningside, Morning Glen.  Also see Restaurant reviews for Greater Morningside and Restaurant Reviews for the rest of Sandton. For older reviews see Restaurant reviews for Rivonia and Morningside.

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