The Hunter Hotels’ property between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay now has three eating options with the addition of the new Zinzi restaurant. There is Hunter’s itself, as well as Tsala – but no-one seems to talk about these much. When we asked the manager at Zinzi, his take on the new restaurant was that it offered an option for the locals, who often found Hunter’s and Tsala to be booked. I found this interesting, not quite convincing – low season too?
Visiting here feels like a destination treat, the property is immaculate with soothing gardens and bush beyond; the restaurant design gives it a game lodge ambience, but a modern, slightly quirky one. It is elegant and tactile, textures of wood and north African furniture, patterned concrete, large sliding doors to the garden. The staff are dressed in updated traditional outfits and very helpful and attentive, though there was some confusion about who had ordered and who not as we sat with our pre-dinner drinks.
The menu reads interestingly. A variety of platters, for one person or to share for up to four, include “mosaic” with north African influences, “pan-African”, “world” and “Zinzi”, the last with a selection of the rest of the menu (made up of ordinary-sounding dishes (ordinary after the Moorish touches of the platters and the tagines) like burgers and grilled fish. Regrettably, the food is very average, much of it lacking basic seasoning. Many items seem replicated in spirit on the platters, negating their individuality. The wine list, too, is short and expensive, plumbing mainly for second labels. But, in mitigation, the prices are pretty fair for the glamorous setting, dinner for one in the R150-R250 range.
Off N2 just before Plett on Knysna side. Breakfast and dinner daily. 044 532 8226