By Hendrik Martin on Friday, December 23 2016, 15:57
It's the holidays, and I have set up a number of entertainments for the children. I'll get into that in a later post. I also said to them that they can have turns opting for an entertainment on a particular day. Something they've been on about is Panarotti's, which has a Monday special where kids can eat for free.
So it's Monday, and off we go to Panarotti's in Rosebank at the Zone. This is more or less what it looked like at about noon (the picture is from Panarotti's website, which I am borrowing):
Our lunch ended with the kids making a pact never to "do" Panarotti's again. I voluntarily opted into the pact at that moment as well. So what went wrong? Well, look again at the picture above: how many patrons do you count...?
I ordered a large Panarotti's special; the kids each ordered an Alfredo. The Alfredo's were fettucini covered in grey mush, and did not seem to impress the kids. My pizza was topped with mushrooms, olives and pineapple, among other things. What struck me was that there were no pork products on the menu: the meat was either beef (including macon), or chicken. Why no lamb? So I had macon, instead of salami or ham. Likewise the kids had no ham in their Alfredo's.
So my pizza was tasty enough; but really completely un-Italian. How can I describe it? It's like having sushi prepared by an Italian chef; or pizza by a Chinese chef. Or by an otherwise competent cook who has never actually tasted a REAL pizza before. So there was no tomato base, no mozzarella, otherwise quite an interesting effort.
By this time the restaurant was attracting patrons, most of which were Muslim. And so I realised that this was a strictly halaal restaurant. And I have absolutely no problem with that - because I fully understand the Muslim health regulations and am completely comfortable with them. And I can add that Muslim food is one of my favourites, especially if done by a real Muslim chef who knows what he is about. (There are really so many Mediterranean dishes that will knock your socks off.)
Still, there's no excuse for running an Italian restaurant, if the food isn't going to be Italian.
Next up: the kids opt for Mexican food, as prepared by Chiapas, also at the Zone.