Hyde Park is one of those places that I drive past to get to Rosebank. I never really considered to stop there and have a meal. I mean sure, I’ve been to the shopping centre a few times, but to be honest with you, that was only ever to visit the Exclusive Books.
Cue date night, an invite from Southern Sun and two very hungry people, and you get Luce, an Italian/Japanese restaurant located at the Southern Sun Hotel in Hyde Park. Luce can really be considered to be two restaurants, as the Italian and Japanese cuisines they have on offer are not fused together – which is great. I don’t think I could handle a sushi pasta dish. The amuse bouche we were given was the only hint of east meets west. A slightly spicy soup served as a “Macchiato”, with foam in an espresso cup. The accompanying biscuit was a fantastic blend of savoury and sweet. I could have eaten an entire box of them.
Restaurants who serve bread as part of the meal always rate higher in my books, and the focaccia and breadsticks served at Luce made my carbohydrate loving face happy.
The restaurant has the biggest glass windows overlooking Craighall and the tables are spaced far enough apart that you don’t have to scream at each other to have a conversation (although one patron was so accustomed to screaming in cramped restaurants in South Africa, that we heard his entire dinner conversation from 20m away). The soft, warm lighting, white tablecloths and comfy chairs create a great romantic atmosphere.
The service we received was fantastic, the waiter had no idea that we were there to review the restaurant, so I assume he treats all his guests with the same enthusiasm.
On to the food, I ordered the Oxtail Tagliatelle, a generous portion of fresh handmade pasta, topped with a rich oxtail sauce, freshly grated parmesan and a sprinkling of parsley. I managed to get through about half of it, and took the rest home with me to enjoy the next day. My boyfriend ordered the T-Bone steak, a monster 500g piece of meat served with a red pepper sauce and roasted potatoes.
For dessert I had the deep fried ice cream, which was served with an array of fresh fruit. The ice cream and fruit was delicious, but the dish was let down by the stodgy, tough coating on the ice cream. My boyfriend ordered the chocolate souffle. What arrived was more of a chocolate fondant than a souffle, but you could call it a Steve and I wouldn’t care. The rich, melty chocolatey centre of that pudding was everything dreams are made of. I had severe dessert envy and may have eaten half of it.
I found the dishes to be priced a bit high when compared to similar meals I have enjoyed elsewhere in Joburg. The mains cost between R150 and R220 and the desserts averaged around R70. Although, I paid R60 for a Coke at a hotel overseas this week, so I shouldn’t be Ms Judgy Face when it comes to the low cost of eating out in South Africa, relative to the rest of the world..
They do offer a tasting menu at R480 pp, which consists of 6 courses, which may be better value for money.
Overall, I would rate this restaurant 7 out of 10.
If you want to book a table, view the menu or perhaps treat some out of town guests to generous portions of food in a fancy setting you can find more details here: https://www.tsogosun.com/luce-at-hyde-park
Have you ever eaten here? Let me know in the comments below.
Disclaimer: My meal was compliments of Tsogo Sun. All thoughts and views expressed are my own.1