I was recently invited by the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice! Melrose Arch to come and try their lunch menu. I was very excited as I had heard fantastic things about their food…and you know I love my food. The only day I was available was a Sunday lunch, so myself, my husband Garith and friends Marco & Candy, with their 7 month old Kenzie, went off to enjoy lunch.
The Food & Wine
As the restaurant was expecting us, they had put together a menu for us to try, of what they thought was their best and most popular dishes.
We enjoyed two Starters:
Duck carpaccio with mango slithers and a wasabi & vanilla dressing topped with coconut shavings. I am normally not a duck fan and certainly not a carpaccio fan, however, I did give it a try and ate two pieces. I can say, the flavour combination was incredible and we were blown away by how the duck stood its own and was definitely the hero of the dish. If you enjoy a carpaccio, then you must try the duck…it is so different and delicious!
Mushroom cloud with a blue cheese crème, topped with biltong and accompanied by a balsamic reduction. If I was vegetarian, I would not have been disappointed to receive this starter. The mushrooms were cooked and seasoned perfectly and when paired with the blue cheese crème and biltong…produced an amazing explosion of flavour and texture in your mouth. I would never have thought to pair mushrooms and blue cheese but it works flawlessly.
Now for Mains:
Off their new addition to the menu, which concentrates on offering African style cuisine – Oxtail accompanied by homemade steamed bread, Chakalaka, spinach and samp with beans. I will start by saying that the oxtail and sides were delicious. It is a true South African inspired dish, that was beautifully presented and extremely flavourful. For me the hero side was the steamed bread, it was so yummy and soft…and soaked up the oxtail sauce gorgeously! The only downside, which is not really food related at all, was the shape of the bowl that the oxtail was served in, it made it difficult to eat the oxtail.
The finale, Dessert:
This course was by far my favourite (surprise surprise) and I was blown away by the presentation – it was beautiful! The mini tasting plate, consisted of a homemade brownie, tiramisu and baked cheesecake. The chocolate brownie, was decadent and rich. The crunchy texture of the hazelnuts really complemented the soft brownie. If you are a chocolate lover, then this is the perfect dessert for you. Moving onto the tiramisu (TheGodfather on the menu), it was by far my favourite of the three, which I was surprised by as I am not normally a fan of tiramisu. However, this is not your regular tiramisu, rather a more delicious and flavourful version. The brandy and coffee infused mascarpone, pairs perfectly with the biscuit, which is soft and buttery. The Godfather, melts in your mouth! Lastly, the baked cheesecake, which was my husband’s favourite. It was creamy and delicious with a delicate flavour. It was paired with fresh strawberries that worked well with the subtle flavour. I must say, the cheesecake was the perfect amount of richness, that is, it was just rich enough 🙂
The Service & Décor
I was very impressed with the service, our waiter was attentive to our drink needs, as well as clearing the table timeously. He was also very accommodating with regards to us having a pram and little Kenzie with us.
I love the decor, it is chic and modern. The black, white and silver colour theme is stylish and contemporary, and goes perfectly with the style of cuisine. I also really liked the mismatched chairs that are still luxurious.
Overall I cannot fault the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice! restaurant on anything. The food and service was incredible! My only regret is not having space to try one of their famous milkshakes. So I will have to go back to their dedicated milkshake and enjoy one of the many flavour options.
22 Whiteley Road, Melrose Arch Precinct, Johannesburg
+27 (0) 11 218 4000
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