By Norma Tsopo
Appearances can be deceptive. Orange Grove Restaurant is set in the humble aboard of a two-star motel.
The layout, furnishings and soft background music however create a relaxing ambience for a memorable fine dining experience.
If anything, the setting is perfectly set to exceed your banqueting.
Our expectations started to be exceeded by the waitresses’ eager to please affectionate conduct, the very moment we walked in for lunch.
The ala carte menu appeared short for a hotel restaurant but this is not at all due to a lack of depth by the chefs but limited ingredients in the current economic climate.
“We wouldn’t want to disappoint our guests by giving excuses on why we are unable to serve dishes they would have picked,” a waitress explained.
Settling for local and western food, the restaurant has not chosen to specialise in any ethnic cuisine due to the rather reserved nature of Zimbabweans in experimenting with food.
They can prepare food to the taste of diners though, which is the key factor across ethnic cuisines.
We were also not down to some experiments and settled for the never disappointing delicacy of pork chops and fish fillet and chips. This was served in impressive turnaround time and gorgeously garnished and presented on a wooden platter.
The portions were very generous too. Much more than we had expected.
The texture and taste of the food matched the exquisite presentation. It was a show of professional proficiency and should clearly place pressure on the motel’s management to improve the infrastructure to match its human capital.
By the end of the meal we were planning our next visit.
On a clear sky we would have had our lunch either by the pool or in the beautiful garden – a relaxing scenery and a favoured wedding venue in the resort town.
The restaurant however only serves English breakfast starting at 7 am and a cut-off time of 9:30 am.
Although it prides itself in offering ala carte service the restaurant can serve more than 500 people during conferences, parties and weddings offering well prepared buffet meals.
Indeed, appearances can be deceptive—the setting may be conservative, but the food is fantastic.
This place is perfect for everyone from individuals, couples and groups who appreciate a laid back leisurely atmosphere.
We will certainly be going back there soon!