Monday, 25 August 2014

Eating Out In Durban

I promise this is my last post about our weekend in Durban in July - procrastinating always gets the better of me and this should have been posted a month or more ago. We didn't have much success in eating out whilst we were in Durban. Our breakfasts at the hotel were the best meals we had, although I do have an issue with the whole halaal policy that the Tsogo Sun Hotels have. Don't get me wrong I respect other religions and their belief systems, but what I don't get is how a hotel can have a policy when 98% of their guests are non halaal. The breakfasts are part of the accommodation package and the spread on offer is amazing - Full English; Continental; Fruits; Cereals; Kippers; Haddock you name it they have it. Even potatoes and macaroni and cheese, but lets be honest, who eats macaroni and cheese or potatoes for breakfast. Everything is well laid out and organised, except for the eggs. There are two chefs making eggs and omelettes, but no organisation. One thing South Africans cannot do is queue in an orderly fashion - no matter the colour; creed or culture. We are a nation that cannot wait our turn and queuing for eggs at a hotel is no different. Then when you finally get to the front of the queue and order your omelette, your choice of fillings are cheese; chicken and chili - why - because it is a halaal hotel and you cannot have bacon or ham in your omelette that you queued half an hour for. Look around the dining room and you see very few if any people who could possibly only eat halaal food. If they had a Hostess organising the queue for the eggs and a separate grill for non halaal patrons to have ham or bacon in their omelettes then the breakfasts would be perfect.  

Our breakfast carried us right through the day and other than ice creams from the little shop tucked away at the back of the hotel, we never had anything else to eat and were not hungry. On the Friday night we walked to Ushaka Village to have early supper and ended up watching a juggling act. The man was really good - I can't remember his name, but anyway his acts were very good and he was so funny - a comedian at his best. After his show, we went to Piatto for supper and all chose the wrong food - Pasta - it was too rich and had too much tomato.

The view from the restaurant deck is just too beautiful.

I even took a sneak photo of a Rickshaw - don't ever let them see you taking a photo because they force you to pay them anything from R10.00 to R20.00 - certainly not worth it.

On Saturday night we were going to go back to Piatto, Mark wanted a steak and when we were there the night before, the steaks looked good. We got side tracked and went up the ramp above the Cargo Hold Restaurant and Ushaka Marine World.  We were looking down on Ushaka Marine World and looking at the sharks - it was stunning and we decided to have dinner at one of the restaurants, which will remain nameless for obvious reasons.

It was a buffet and before you are seated you are told to go look at the food. This should have rung alarm bells, but I was so busy trying to see what was happening with my camera that I did not pay attention or even look at the food. My camera batteries had gone flat, but I did not realise that, because I had only put the fully charged batteries in my camera just before we went out and I was stressing over my camera and next thing we were collecting our food. I had three mouth fulls of food and just could not eat the food on my plate. I have never eaten such disgusting food in my life. The longer we sat there the more uncomfortable we were feeling and we were not even there for 30 minutes. We just felt out of place and uncomfortable. The waitresses looked like they were ushers at a funeral - quiet subdued almost scared. It was unbelievable - our waitress collected my full plate without even a raised eyebrow that my food was hardly touched. The waitress looked scared and scurried off with my plate. We thought we would try the dessert and get something for our R129.00. Even the ice cream that came out of a softserve machine tasted disgusting and looked nothing like softserve ice cream. We won't even mention what the other desserts looked like. The R129.00 was supposed to include coldrinks, but we were charged an extra R40.00 each as a service fee for the waitress to bring the coldrinks. There was a sign up at the pay point stating that no refunds will be given, please look at the food before being seated. We missed that when we walked in. We just paid and left and were not planning on questioning anyone about the disgusting food. I sent a complaint to the head office, but my complaint was neither acknowledged nor responded to. Eating out that weekend definitely fell under The Bad and The Ugly of Durban. I don't even think the beggars would have eaten that food it was so bad.

Next time we will know to rather eat at the hotel's restaurant.

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