Heather Hook Lonehill Waterfront Review
The by-line on the restaurant brochure said “Don’t look at parking lots anymore!” and I was already intrigued. In Johannesburg many local restaurants have great outdoor areas, but you find yourself on the side of a road, or literally looking at parked cars.
Brilliant concept here from owners Michelle da Silva and Charl Potgieter, to create the Lonehill Waterfront area, comprising 4 venues in to one, a spectacular view over Lonehill Lake, and a kiddies play area which is the possibly one of the biggest I have ever seen.
Lucky enough to attend the media launch of the new Lonehill Waterfront venue on Saturday I was blown away with what the team had undertaken. Let’s Meat, a staple restaurant in the centre, has expanded downstairs to join up with the newly opened Antonnio’s Italian Kitchen, and Let’s Brew Craft Beer Bar. Upstairs the shop, Let’s Deli, sells a full range of delicatessen treats from cold meats to cheeses, pastas, biltong and more – and then very cleverly links down to the restaurants again – and both restaurant kitchens use the fresh produce from the deli. It’s all rather ingenious, really.
Co – owner Charl Potgieter says, “It was my vision to establish a great restaurant and entertainment area where you could shop for farm-style meat and ingredients at the Deli, where the kids can play in a fun, safe and exciting environment while the parents have a light meal or a big meal while looking at a beautiful view – not over a parking lot or in a mall.”
And boy did they get it right! Antonnio’s is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the food was a never ending buffet of homemade Italian style treats. We were spoilt with pizza’s fresh from the oven with a variety of toppings, fresh cheeses and olives, homemade pasta’s, jaffel burgers, Mrs. Balls smoked ribs and the rather cool “mighty bites” – tiny little burgers served with potato skins.
I was overjoyed to discover that Let’s Brew stocks my very favorite craft beer, BlackHorse, initially discovered at the original brewery in Magaliesburg, and now in Lonehill for my drinking pleasure. The Ginger Berry flavor was the hit of the day at our table, the ginger beer infused with strawberries was just so refreshing in the heat and yes, we do drink pink drinks, Dave!
As the rugby was on the games were playing on the many screens in the bar, and quite a large crowd had gathered to watch the semi-finals by the time we made our departure. The unique bar stools, repurposed from beer kegs was a cute touch that quite appealed to me.
The only downside to the day for me was the service. Blown away by everything else, but the waitrons were slow and forgetful, plates piled up and one of our party waited 45 minutes for a cup of coffee. Possibly it may have been the fact that about 70 media descended on them at once frazzled the bar a bit, or the newness of the waitering team. That said, I will certainly visit again, and hopefully they have ironed out this kink, as I have a feeling that Lonehill Waterfront and its team are going to be in for a busy festive season, which is good news for any venue.
There are a variety of Let’s Meat and Antonnio’s spread across Johannesburg, Centurion and Pretoria, all run under the same umbrella, so check them out here www.antonnios.cc for more info.
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