Making a table booking is usually your first contact with a restaurant. Getting a disinterested waiter is pretty annoying and most certainly can create a bad impression. When we had family from overseas staying with us recently, we wanted to book a table for 11 on a weeknight. No big deal you’d think. We’d happened to be at Hillary’s doing the “touristy thing” earlier that day, so while we were there I tried to book. Not much luck though…
I first tried to book in person. I was told they could fit us in at 6.30pm, but would need the table back for 7.45pm Hmmmm, I REALLY don’t like having a time limit on my meal; so I passed since there seemed to be no alternative. Everyone was pretty disappointed with that though – as they had heard about Hippo Creek’s signature dish “The Hunters Assagi”. We couldn’t think of anywhere else to go for dinner that suited everyone. After a lot of umming and arring, I called Hippo Creek back to see if there were any more options. I must have got a different person on the phone as we were now magically able to get a table. It just had to be outside, which was fine; it was a nice warm evening. I just wish I’d been given that choice in the first place! It would have saved a lot of heartache!!
So we sat on the deck, overlooking the lovely Hillary’s Marina. It was a gorgeous night. Chef and I shared the “Mud Huts” for entrée. They were fab. They are button mushrooms filled with cream cheese, spinach and semi dried tomatoes. They’re then crumbed, deep fried and served with a garlic aioli.
My lovely cousin H, who is vegetarian/gluten free, was surrounded by a meat-fest – poor thing! Most people had the “Hunters Assagi”, I opted for ribs and H had her salad, bless her. I really enjoyed the pork ribs – though they are not at all lady-like. They were tasty, saucy and the serve was mega – and I only got the half rack.
There were a few beef assagais about. Most people were quite restrained with the 350g serve. Chef, practically inhaled his 500g serve, he’s a true blue carnivore. For those who have not experienced the Assagai – it is a African Meat dish, which the meat (Chicken or Beef rump) is in large chunks, served on a vertical metal skewer. At the top of the skewer is your choice of chilli or garlic butter. This melts down the perfectly cooked meat and drips onto the bowl of chips below. Bliss (as long as you don’t have a heart attack!).
Hippo Creek Hillarys is in a beaut location. It’s really great for trying something a little different too. The service was mostly good and they cater well for groups and family’s – as long as you can get a booking **wink**