As winter is here, and the nights are wonderfully crispy, I thought that a good spot to try out would be Kalimambo in the Kamagelo Centre. A decent curry would go down well, washed with a robust glass of red or a fruity white – what better way to spend an evening with friends. So off we went to the new, silver service offering in Hoedspruit – the full name Kalimambo Pub, Indian Restaurant and Grill – ‘fine dining section’. The name would suggest trying to be a little of something to many, BUT we were there ONLY for the curry – so let’s leave that thought pattern aside. Curry it was!
It was well appointed, but we did ask for the heater to be turned off and the lights dimmed – that gave it a little more ambience. Sadly, the serviettes are paper – I thought that fabric serviettes for silver service was more the norm. Added to that, in my excitement of the moment, a serviette caught alight, and I suppose I nearly burnt the place down, bit that was averted and the fire extinguished by a very attentive waitron.
The waitrons were very attentive from the start, which is always a good thing. The starters were presented on time – we did not have to wait long. The wine selection was sufficient, and we ended up choosing a delightful Chenin Blanc which complemented the dishes well. We started with spring rolls and samosas. Crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside. Full of taste and just the right amount of chilli – they were soon consumed by the merry band of culinary aficionados.
This we followed with a variety of main courses of beef bunny chow, butter chicken, vegetable korma, paneer palak, aloo gobi, and dahl makhni. This was accompanied by some garlic and plain naan bread. Some condiments were supplied but the feeling was that we could have had more.
All the meals were delightful and were more than enough. We even ended taking some home with us. The beef was tender and tasty, the bunny chow was more than a meal on its own! The butter chicken was served ‘mild’ as requested and was a delicious dish. Fragrant and tasty, juicy and ‘mild’, it was a perfect dish.
The remaining dishes were shared amongst the friends, and we all had our favourites – but all in all the vegetables in the korma were firm, tasty, with layers of flavours. The paneer was an instant favourite (as were the others!) – for a dish that can be tasteless, this one was very tasty, and the paneer was firm. A good choice. The aloo gobi was my personal favourite, once again fresh and superbly tasty, with a great sauce. The dahl was the favourite of all the dishes, tender lentils, spicy and delicious. Happily, there were plenty options for vegetarians and vegans on the menu – a pleasant change in Hoedspruit.
Deserts were rice pudding and ice cream. These could not be faulted, the rice pudding, which I had was scrumptious. The ice cream was good too.
What a good fine dining experience – somewhat of a surprise, but a pleasant one at that! Reasonably priced, good clean surrounds (my favourite – crisp white tablecloths) and pleasant ambience.
I think this is a must visit when in Hoedspruit. Well done to management and staff on a fantastic evening out.