I was on the lookout for something tasty and filling to wolf down and when I came across Norwood newbie, Fireside Bistro … and I sure am glad I found it!
Not called Fireside for nothing, the fire is lit as early as 9am so that it reaches the right cooking temperature for lunch and dinner, getting as high as 50 degrees behind the grill! But chef and owner Terence Klaff hardly breaks a sweat as he and his cooks take centre stage while guests tuck into their substantial meals.
Fireside’s dècor is simple, with a wooden theme and strongly-flavoured South African art, which adds another dimension to the look and feel. The bistro inhabits the space of a one-time pizza parlour and, despite knocking down all the walls and putting in new structures, Klaff has kept the pizza ovens which add a note of cosiness to the already warm ambience … they also have a functional value as vegetables, chicken, snails and fish are cooked in them.
I know you’re curious about what’s to eat at this place so I won’t keep you waiting any longer! Soups and starters to whet the appetite include Saldanha Bay mussels in cream with garlic and white wine, boerewors with cumin and chilli flakes and peri-peri chicken livers, which my partner left me a morsel of before devouring … delicious!
By and large the mains are meaty, to fit in with Klaff’s braai theme, with chicken and fish thrown in for a bit of variety. I went for the Springbok steak which proved to be a delicious choice with its balsamic glaze, and Greek salad accompaniment.
My partner ordered the deboned chicken, which was served with a generous helping of roast potatoes. His groans of appreciation and lack of conversation said it all!
If you’re wondering what the chef himself recommends, it’s his favourite dish: the Rump Chimichurri with dried herbs and rainbow peppercorns. The lamb Sunday lamb spit special also comes highly recommended!
“Each menu item is a full meal, there are no sauces and extras needed. In the theme of firewood cooking, it is a casual vibe with a complete meal,” he says.
Chances are, after a meal at Fireside, you won’t have room for dessert … but if you do, keep in mind that, while sweets are few, Klaff says he is working on that and has a few surprises in mind. Sounds exciting!
Open for lunch and dinner, prices range from about R50 to R150 and seats are hard to come by. At only nine months old, Fireside has its liquor licence and growing the business to bring in more tables is definitely on the cards.
So go on, give Fireside a try … what are you waiting for?