24 September 2017, Monday
First of all, even though the day is almost over, I’d like to wish my fellow South Africans a happy Heritage Day! I had a lovely lie in this morning (until 11:30!) after which I got ready to meet one of my Besties, who’d come to Pretoria from Johannesburg for the day, at Menlyn Maine. I absolutely adore everything about Menlyn Maine so whenever I’m meeting friends for lunch, it’s usually the first spot I suggest.
Upon arrival I drove past a new restaurant called The Common Room and it was love at first brief glance. When I met up with Amy in the parking arcade, we both said that we wanted to check this new place out. From a purely aesthetic point of view, I was head over heels. The Common Room’s decor is very inviting with its rustic, industrial style and luxurious accents.
As we sat down at one of the cocktail tables under a huge umbrella, the music changed from The Red Hot Chilli Peppers’ Dani California to The Rolling Stones’ Brown Sugar– I knew we’d picked the right place. If you’re like me and you like a place that has a distinct vibe and good atmosphere, then you’ll definitely enjoy this restaurant. It had a good selection of gin to Amy’s delight and lots of Mediterranean style dishes to my delight. One of the chefs was even nice enough to explain some of the ingredients that we didn’t understand and gave us a sample of papadum to try before ordering. Originally we were having a laugh while going back and forth trying to figure out its correct pronunciation. But all the while all I could think about was how much the sound of ‘papadum’ reminded me of the song called Red Wedding that Coldplay had written for the cast of Game of Thrones to perform during their Red Nose Day sketch. If you don’t know what I’m talking about you can watch the video here. After spending an embarrassing amount of time deliberating what we should order, I chose the Tikka Chicken Pizza, which had chicken, yoghurt raita, coriander, pineapple and papadum on it, while Amy got the Chicken Breast with flat bread, tzatziki and salad. The food was delicious and the yogurt raita turned out to be quite similar to tzatziki, which isn’t something I’ve ever thought about putting on a pizza. The contrasting textures of the yoghurt raita and the papadum really complimented each other and is quite an innovative combination in my humble opinion. The chicken was a bit spicy, however I pretty much have to keep a tissue handy whenever just entering a Nando’s, so if your tolerance for spicy food is higher than mine- which is very likely- you’ll find it quite enjoyable.
All in all, I had an absolutely lovely day with one of my oldest friends, who I am incredibly grateful to still have in my life. Amy and I can’t wait to go back to The Common Room during the weekend or at night to see what the vibe is like then.
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