Casual and contemporary, with a spacious, welcoming interior, alfresco lounge area and excellent children’s play area, Fleisherei Bistro is a great option in Pretoria for families.
The restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch every day, as well as for dinner on Friday and Saturday nights. For breakfast (served until 11am), try the Welsh rarebit: ciabatta topped with grilled mushrooms and bacon, smothered in a welsh rarebit sauce and grilled until it is hot and bubbling. Among other options, there’s also a breakfast burger and breakfast panini, a health breakfast, a range of omelettes, and some sweeter options, like the flapjacks American, which is a stack of three buttery flapjacks topped with a blueberry compote and served with cream or ice cream.
The lunch and dinner menus offer an appealing assortment of meals that includes the usual suspects like burgers, salads and wraps, as well as a selection of prettily presented speciality dishes and a range of grills that includes steak, chops, ribs and an enormous eisbein.
Starters includes a carpaccio of dry-aged beef served with capers, confit tomatoes, jalapeños, parmesan, wild rocket, egg, and truffle mayo. It has a wonderfully smoky flavour and is almost too attractively plated to eat.
For mains, the shredded braised lamb shoulder is comfort food at its very best: tempura potato gnocchi, green beans and tender pieces of lamb in a red wine jus, served with spinach shoots and a garlic and lime purée. It is rich and utterly delicious. The braised pork belly also deserves a mention: a thick slice of roasted meat served with pearl barley, corn, spring onion, butternut purée and sautéed bok choy, finished off with a teriyaki sauce. The combination of flavours is sublime. Fleisherei is also well known for its excellent cuts of meat, served with your choice of side dishes, and its gourmet burgers, which come stacked about half a foot high and include a range of toppings.
Be sure not to overlook the dessert menu. The vanilla crème brûlée is so much more than it sounds, and is served with salted caramel macaroons, espresso foam and chocolate soil. While it is a generous portion, you will not want to share. Even the cake of the day (the likes of chocolate mousse, lemon meringue, red velvet, or caramel cheesecake) is bound to be spectacular, and large enough to share.
If you have tots in tow, there is a kids’ menu featuring very reasonable drinks, meals and treats. The ribs and chips could be a hit with toddlers.
The beverages on offer include fresh juices, cordials, milkshakes and soft drinks, as well as a wide selection of cocktails, liqueurs, beers, ciders and wines, with some available by the glass. The wine list is accessible, featuring 28 wines and ranging in price from R135 for the Pierre Jordan Tranquille to R650 for the most expensive item, the Meerlust Rubicon.
The restaurant cannot be faulted on its service. Waiters are friendly, considerate, efficient and knowledgeable, and respond promptly to requests. They are quick to clear empty plates or offer drinks refills. The head waiter might even entertain one of your little ones while you eat. After our meal, the executive chef, Malebo, popped by to see how we had enjoyed our experience.
Spacious and welcoming, the bistro is decorated in neutral and brown tones. The rougher brick walls give the contemporary interior a somewhat rustic feeling. Tables are large, chairs are comfortable, and the lighting is soft but not too dim. There is an alfresco area, which features lounge furniture rather than dining tables. The crowd is mixed – mostly friends dining together or families sharing a meal. It is fabulously child-friendly, with a great outdoor play area that is completely closed in, so you really can relax and not worry about your child escaping via an unseen exit.
Overall, Fleisherei Bistro offers an excellent dining experience. Perhaps not one of the cheapest places in town to dine, but certainly worth the money.
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