Entering the establishment, we noticed that there were some nice tables to sit at, either in the smoking section or the non-smoking section. The place was humming — literally! with strong extractor fans whirring loudly and with the regular music coming through this din only just audibly.
We sat ourselves in the non-smoking section and observed the professional and clean decor, displaying a nice consistent Nando’s theme.
Not too familiar with Nando’s, I asked my daughter to help me out with the menu. “Ach, Paps, it is just chicken!” she said with some irritation at my lack of what everyone knows, particularly her group of young urban professionals. “Yes,” I replied somewhat testily, “I know that as well of course! But what should I go for in particular?”
We decided each to have the half chicken with chips, and I asked for an extra helping of mild perinaise dip. I chose the mildly flavoured option and my daughter the herb-and-lemon chicken.
It was somewhat difficult to make oneself heard over all the noise. The poor girl at the till had even lost her voice, which made ordering all the more difficult. The waiter helping those that had decided not to take away their food but sit down at a table, was rushing around energetically, organising the front of house all by himself.
We got our cool-drinks, and soon these were followed by plates of chicken and chips. It all tasted predictably Nando-nice, the mayonnaise peri-peri combination called perinaise was also pleasant. Some of the contents of the sauce bottles was tried as well and found OK too.
As far as possible my daughter and I discussed some business strategies for her nascent enterprise. A couple had come in and sat themselves at the table next to ours, and their conversation over their lunch could not but enter our ears as well, as shouting was required to be audible. I polished of my plate quite easily while my daughter asked for a doggy bag.
Before we left we had some coffee and a sticky toffee pudding and a chocolate mousse. These came in take–away packaging. We unwrapped our desserts and found the sticky toffee not bad, but the rather cold chocolate mousse with frozen ice-cream underneath a little dull. Just as we were about to call it a day, the noisy extractor fan stopped: suddenly we could hear each other speak.
So what can one say? You know what you’ll get at Nando’s. And especially for a quick take away that might be just what you want.
Speciality Restaurant – Afro Portuguese
Expect to Spend US$12 – US$20
Pomona Shops, Borrowdale Road.