The rest of the morning we visited friends, fussed over the dog who did the 5km run, had an al fresco lunch overlooking the sea, went to sea-food shops and harbours, then a long drive home, quick change and on to dinner at a house on the slopes of Helderberg Mountain.
Here — and the reason for my digression — I had the most awesome fillet steak I’m ever likely to enjoy! It may perhaps be matched one fine day, but I can’t see how — tender only just begins to describe it!
They were cooked on a braai and though I chose from the well-done side of the platter, the steak knife was redundant; you could have slipped through it with the side of your fork! My friend who’s travelled the world said she’d never had better, not in London, New York or anywhere in America or Europe — not anywhere! It puts lie to that oft appended declaration on the bottom of many a steak-house menu — not responsible for well-done steaks — a real cop-out for using just average or poorly matured meat!
The closer-to-home wilds are quite different from the silent towering rocky majesty of the Jonkershoek and Groot Drakenstein mountains I hiked near Stellenbosch, and probably under-appreciated! Nestling in the east of Harare, not that far from the city centre, in fact, we have our very own Mukuvisi Woodlands; and tucked in there, is a very pleasant Coffee Shop where you can enjoy light meals or tea or coffee accompanied by a cake or muffin. The light meals include pies, toasted sandwiches, samoosas, burgers, steak rolls and the like.
For something more substantial, there is the beef or chicken stir-fry with rice, or if you visit at lunch time there is a daily special, which on this day was T-bone and chips. Or you may prefer a tuna or Greek salad. They also have a kids menu with mini pies, chicken nuggets or wings with chips and a small breakfast menu.
My fellow diner was already well ensconced and enjoying a cappuccino when I arrived so I joined her with the home-made and pleasantly tart lemon juice… there was extra sugar on hand if desired. For the main, I gave the T-bone a go, and my companion tried a chicken burger.
Our waitress didn’t ask how I liked my steak but it came well-done anyway, tasty, and just a little too cooked, as was the chicken burger, but we had good chips accompanied by a small salad and all was well presented and enjoyable; friends on the next table tucked into a generous stir-fry.
There was a small dessert choice that came from the tea and coffee menu; chocolate cake was on offer plus an assortment of muffins, so we had the cake and my companion complemented hers with a bowl of ice-cream — I was obliged to help polish that off — but what can one do?!
Expect to Spend US$6 to US$16 per head
Mukuvisi Woodlands, Corner Glenara Avenue/Hillside Rd, near Msasa.