Caffé Rossini–Recommended With Confidence

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The restaurant in today's review.

If you don’t know by now that South Africa’s economy is part of the global southward plummet, then you must either be a recluse, using prescribed or illegal drugs, or both; possibly even all three.

Even the inane ‘buzz-phrase’, “We’re sorry we’re missing the recession because we are too busy making money” is being used by fewer and fewer of those sickening mind-massagers who bounce up and down on stages, telling you that you’re a winner and other emotional propaganda.

However, those who are fortunate enough to have a job and maybe a little left-over cash before the government implements those crippling road tolls in Jo’burg, will be thinking twice about the next business lunch. The smart money has been and will be downgrading from La Maison du Chic to La Maison du Donald, or something in between; the main theme being consistently high standards and value for money.

Well, if you happen to be in the Ruimsig/Florida/Honeydew area, then Caffé Rossini at Eagle’s Landing shopping centre is most definitely worth a try…. And here’s why.

We’ve been going there for more than 5 years, that’s roughly 50 visits without one disappointment! A record not even a hay fever sufferer would sneeze at. So there’s your consistency right there.

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The Rossini "Stravagante" - Chicken strips - done to a turn - with avo, pineapple and lettuce; all lying seductively on a baguette under an enticing layer of sweet chili sauce..

Caffé Rossini is a mid-market franchise, offering meals a few rungs up the ladder from the normal burger outlet – good, honest food without the ‘posh’ or price. It’s the place to go if you and the girls in the office decide to ‘do’ a quick lunch somewhere. It’s also a great place for the family to meet up after the Saturday’s shopping.

There are mercifully no jungle gyms or other recreational apparatus for the kids to play on, so chances are the noise level will be acceptable. This also makes it an ideal place for refined gentlefolk to sit of a sunny afternoon, reading a good book with a companionable cuppa and a slice of scrumptious cake.

As usual, I’ve put the standardising score card up for comparison:

Category # out of 10 Notable Points
Perceived target market * A franchise offering good value for money meals to daytime guests
Date & Time of visit * 13 September 2011 at 11:30am
Welcome/greeting 10 We are always warmly greeted on arrival and departure
Manager visible? 9 If the owner isn’t there, one of the managers or senior staff members is in attendance
Quality of staff 9 In a word: Excellent. Quiet, discreet, attentive and efficient
Ambiance 10 A most agreeable variation. It’s alive on weekends and mealtimes but agreeably calm in between times.
Table appearance 9 Clean, minimal. No clutter.
Menu variety & flexibility 10 A pleasingly varied menu. All reasonable changes to dishes are cheerfully and accurately executed
Cleanliness 9 Dining area is always clean and the displays are faultless.
Service 10 Quick, accurate and efficient – as standard
Promptness 10 Most meals arrive between 7 to 10 minutes. When the place is heaving, allow for a bit longer – but no complaints.
Food – presentation 10 Even the simplest items are well presented with attention even to minor detail.
Ingredient quality 9 All appearances indicate that high quality ingredients are used. Salads are always crisp and fresh
Taste 10 All dishes we’ve eaten here over 5 years have been entirely satisfactory
Delivered as advertised 10 Yes – with the friendliness of the owner and staff added
Worth the spend 10 Yes – and in these tumultuous economic times – Yes again.
Worth going again 10 Yes.
Total Score 145 Out of 150 – Five star excellence for this category!!
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About Freud Fission Chips

Despite the banality of the name, FFC has led an intensely varied life. Grateful for surviving almost three years as a 'troepie' (soldier for non-South African Readers) in the Angolan war, he determined to wring as much out of life as possible. Currently providing Business Analysis services, trading on the stock market and developing web pages to pay the bills, FFC also dabbles in wildlife, landscape and people photography, writing, and far too many interests for his own good. He has also travelled extensively in southern Africa (working on the sound theory that a moving target is more dificult to hit). These peregrinations also include over 1500kms on foot through some of the worlds most spectacular scenery. It hasn't all been plain sailing, beer and skittles, and endless beds of roses... Chief amongst the prerequisites for surviving Africa, with its mind-bending characteristics, is an appropriate sense of humour.... So, for now, he will be recounting the amusing among the annoying, the frustrating wrapped in the funny and extracting the mirth from the melancholy... Oh yes, there might be some alliteration too.
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