Tag Archives: date night

Nik Rabinowitz’s What the EFF at the Baxter Theatre My Life 12 MAR 2015

Saturday evening was a rare date night for Chantelle and myself, and having left the kids with Oupa and Ouma for the evening, we jetted off to Cape Town for the evening, pointing our nose towards my old alma mater, the University of Cape Town – lower campus and the Baxter Theatre Centre to be more specific.

IMG_20150307_185953 the baxter theatre building interior

The plan for the evening was to arrive with plenty of time on our hands in order to enjoy supper at a nearby, particularly nice ribs and steak place that Chantelle had spotted on the Internet, followed by some tummy guffaws courtesy of the usually hilarious Nik Rabinowitz.

Our car safely parked, we headed down through the Baxter, marvelled at how beautiful the building is, took a selfie, and then exited the main doors – now on Rondebosch Main Street and ready to march on towards our dinner venue!

IMG_20150307_185945 craig and chantelle lotter taking a selfie in the baxter theatre

However, after a good ten minutes or so of walking, we realized via GPS that we had in fact marched down the road in completely the wrong direction, forcing us to now hastily turn around and march the other way – which needless to say put a rather serious crimp on our carefully planned time management for the night!

But things were about to get worse. We reached the ribs place only to find that the Internet had seemingly lied to us – this was no nice sit down restaurant, oh no. Heck, it had plastic red and white checkered table cloths and a fast food ordering station for goodness sake!

Luckily, the section of Main Road that we now found ourselves on doesn’t exactly suffer from a shortage of eating establishments, even if most seem geared towards the student crowd, and of particular interest to the two of us was the swanky sounding The Hussar Grill – perfect for a date night meal for two!

Sadly though, it was small, cramped and rather full. So full that we were turned away. Sigh.

So with time now very short, a snap decision was made, and we found ourselves seated down outside Cocoa Wah Wah, where the food wasn’t particularly bad and service in the end was pretty snappy. (We both had burgers in order to speed things up.)

Thus, with the food part of the evening now done and dusted, it was on to the main event for the evening!

From the Baxter website:

“It’s hard to live in South Africa for more than five minutes without looking around in wide-eyed bewilderment, and asking: What the EFF?.

Whether it’s hippies rubbing their chords together to produce solar energy, militants marching into parliament in Pep Store overalls and Italian shoes, or taxi drivers who manage to simultaneously cut you off and flip you the bird while paging through the newspaper and counting their money… at some point in every day, you will say: What the EFF?.

Fortunately, Nik Rabinowitz is here to answer that question. Or maybe not answer it, so much as shake it a bit, and see what falls out.

From the leafy green ganglands of Constantia, to the imaginary book storage lockers of Limpopo, Rabinowitz casts his eye far and wide, and muses: What the EFF?.

And if politics isn’t your cup of tea, there’s plenty of other ridiculousness that’ll have you shaking your head, and clutching your sides.

This show is 100% vegan and eco-friendly, and made up of 10% recycled material and 15% up cycled jokes. No punch lines were tested on animals. Bring your own canvas bag.

nik rabinowitz what the eff show

Right.

Neither Chantelle nor I had in fact ever been to a show at the Baxter Theater, and now that I have I most certainly will go there again. What a lovely venue! Anyway, back to the matter at hand.

The opening act was a young African comedian by the name of… well actually I don’t really remember his name so that’s a bit of a pity. Still, his racially charged comedy was humorous and his skill with the guitar excellent, making for a good start to the evening.

That then led into our favourite Xhosa-speaking Jewish comedian Nik Rabinowitz taking to the stage, a man I last saw in action a good six years ago!

Sadly for me this time around though, I just didn’t find the majority of his comedy and social commentary very funny – in fact, apart from the occasional chuckle here and there, the show was more than just a little bit on the boring and unfunny side for the two of us – so much so that Chantelle even managed to doze off for a bit! (Seriously, if you doze off at a comedy show then you know something isn’t quite right!)

Despite it’s good premise, the show is a bit lazy and loose, not really tying all the elements together very well and lacking in… well a punch lines to be fair. Yes, of course Nik’s accents and characters are all brilliant as usual, but unless they’re saying something witty or funny, well then that alone only takes you so far I’m afraid.

Honestly, we were glad when the show was over and we could spill out into the cool evening air. Neither of us had enjoyed it, in fact, so much so that we both kind of felt that we had just wasted a whole lot of money which could have been far better spent on the evening – like at The Hussar Grill for example! ;)

Anyway, to cap off what in the end had a bit of a disappointing date night out, we arrived back at our car, only to find that some idiot had parked their SUV right up against the driver’s side of our Hyundai Accent.

So it was some jean pant gymnastics for me to enter through the passenger’s side and make it across to the driver’s seat then – honestly, Chantelle should have left a lipstick message for the uncouth lout!

And that was that – other than the long drive home of course…

(Oh, and seeing as this was now the second strike out in terms of seeing comedy at a theater (Robert Fridjhon’s Wild also let us down a bit), we think we might take a little break from this genre for a while…)

Related Link: http://www.baxter.co.za/shows/what-the-eff/

Gibson’s for Date Night in the Waterfront (2014-05-10) Photo Gallery 19 JAN 2015

So my quest to play catch up in finally getting around to posting all of my phone camera photos up to the blog continues… Last year Chantelle and I did something uncharacteristic for my birthday by heading out for a very rare date night on the evening before the main event. We really wanted to try out this fantastic burger joint everyone had been recently raving about, namely Gibson’s Gourmet Burgers & Ribs, tucked away somewhere in the V&A Waterfront.

With the kids safely tucked in at Oupa and Ouma’s house, Chantelle and I headed south across the Boerewors Line, and not only successfully located the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, but actually managed to find parking as well (We hadn’t been there for a very, very long time, so I count that as something worthy of noting)! Then the hunt for Gibson’s was on, and after a long, enjoyable and sightseeing jaunt around the area, we realized that the restaurant is in fact a small little shopfront tucked in the food court in the actual Waterfront mall itself!

Initially a bit disappointed with the size of the restaurant then, our tune quickly changed when once seated, one quickly realized how cleverly the setup has been done – you pretty much feel that you’re inside a proper eatery, despite the fact that the mall walkway is literally right there in front of you!

Anyway, in terms of the food, we were definitely NOT let down. An awesome selection of burgers made the final choice difficult, but the end result that was put down in front of us were two of the best, freshest burgers that we had ever tasted.

In other words, a definite ‘recommend’!

By that stage it was pretty dark, and so we capped off an enjoyable evening together by taking a ride in the big ferris wheel that dominates the waterfront these days – the aptly named Cape Wheel. Neither Chantelle nor I had ever taken a ride on it before and so we were understandably excited stepping into the designated pod after slapping down our money on the counter (which was a little too much in my opinion, but hey, tourist fees – comes with the territory I suppose).

The ride is over pretty quick, and I have to say, we probably robbed ourselves of some of the views by doing it at night, but nevertheless, it was an enjoyable 10 to 15 minute sightseeing ride, and as always, the lights of Cape Town certainly didn’t disappoint!

IMG_20140510_222539

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Cappuccino’s in the Mall My Life 20 DEC 2014

Thursday evening was an unusual event in that due to work commitments on Friday for both Chantelle and myself, Jessica and Emily (both currently on holiday) needed to sleep over at Oupa and Ouma’s house, meaning that for the first time in quite a while, Chantelle and I were able to eat out by ourselves for a change. Seeing as I was in Gordon’s Bay and she was coming home from Bellville, we opted to use Somerset Mall as the arranged meeting point.

Earlier in the week Chantelle had spotted that the venerable Music Moods had shut its doors and in its place, directly across from Spur in the mall, had opened a new restaurant named Cappuccino’s. Some further digging resulting in her learning that Cappuccino’s is in fact a franchise from up country, and more importantly, it is open relatively late, meaning that the fact that we would only be getting there around 21:00 was in fact no problem at all.

In other words, Chantelle was really keen to give them a whirl.

So, with impeccable timing, the two of us arrived in a relatively short space of one another, and got to the business of enjoying a meal together.

First things first, I have to say that I love the decor of the place. Well spaced out tables, mirrors on the walls and lots of light coloured materials makes for a particularly spacious and modern feel, something which both Chantelle and I loved – a lot more open and welcoming than say the often stodgy and much darker Spur or Panarottis restaurants already operating in the mall.

Our waiter was a particularly eager lady, but very inexperienced and not yet very familiar with the menu (which makes sense seeing as the place is so new). The menu itself is worryingly large in terms of choice, think Spur I guess, with the menu design borrowing a lot of design elements from say Mugg & Bean. In fact Cappuccino’s positions itself as a Cafe and Pizzeria, which I guess gives it licence to have as large as possible offering available, but as Chantelle always points out, the problem with large menus is that the food can then seldom be fresh, nor can every single dish on the menu ever be perfected.

Anyway, we skipped starters and went straight for mains, with Chantelle ordering their beef ribs and myself going for a gorgonzola sirloin steak. Veggies and chips were the sides, and I have to say, the chips were pretty rubbish. If you’ve ever waited long enough for McDonalds chips to go cold then you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about – thin, stodgy and not particularly nice. However, apart from the chips, the rest of the food was really, really good, the vegetables and steak in particular something to write home about.

All the usual suspects in terms of mainstream beer and ciders are available as expected and with mains done and our table cleared for us, we finished off with a filter coffee for me, an Americano coffee, and slice of flour-free chocolate cake for Chantelle.

Again, I thought the coffee was particularly good, as did Chantelle, though she wasn’t quite that impressed with the cake. Which is fair, because as a cake baker herself, your cake has to be pretty damn good to impress Chantelle!

(I didn’t think it was that bad, but I got what Chantelle said that flourless cake certainly had more flour than what she had expected).

Prices are inline with what you would expect to pay at a franchise family restaurant, and overall we both quite enjoyed our meal together there.

That said, I’m not sure I would eat a main meal there again though. Certainly their wood-fired pizzas seem to be very tantalising (a nice big, proper pizza oven hulks at the back), but for me I think it better makes for a particularly nice spot for a cup of coffee and something light or sweet to peck on.

Anyway, all that said, overall Cappuccino’s is certainly not a horrible restaurant to be added into Somerset Mall’s eating establishment mix, and certainly the added competition should be good for some lifting of standards from the other incumbents! :)

cappuccinos cafe and pizzeria

Related Link: http://www.cappuccinos.co.za/

Date Night… An Opinion My Reviews 04 MAY 2010

It was pretty enjoyable.

I went to see Date Night with Chantelle the other night, and despite not being entirely what I expected (I expected a bit of a pointless movie with loads of laughs right the way through), I ended up quite enjoying it – this movie with a main, well built storyline focussing on the problems facing long term married couples with kids which then kind of gets mixed up with this completely improbable and mixed up scenario which is so action-packed and dripping with comedy that you just can’t help but enjoy it!

A shirt. Are you allergic to them then?

The movie tells the tale married with kids couple Phil and Claire Foster (Steve Carell and Tina Fey) who are in a bit of a rut in terms of their marriage but who still make the effort to go on “date nights” in order to keep their relationship alive.

On one particular evening though, Phil decides to try and go that extra mile and so they hit one of Manhattan’s most popular and hippest seafood restaurants at the moment to see if they’ll be lucky and get a table for dinner. But as could have been expected, the place is jam packed and the chances of them getting a cancellation is looking pretty slim – until Phil decides to hijack a reservation of a couple who obviously has decided not to show.

The dinner is fantastic, but the consequences of having hijacked that reservation is not – two armed thugs appear and take them for a walk, asking about a very specific little flashdrive – and under the complete impression that the Forsters are now the Triplehorns. What follows on from here is a madcap chase and adventure in which Phil and Claire need to stay one step ahead of the gun-toting thugs and attempt to catch up to the real Triplehorns in order to clear up this whole mess – though the only problem is that this little story is a lot more higher connected than anyone could possible imagine!

Both Tina Fey and Steve Carell are absolutely fantastic in this movie. They manage to capture that real world feel of a married couple and both have that wonderfully sharp and sarcastic wit that really works well off one another is an absolute barrel of laughs to see on screen. And as a comedy duo they just absolutely work (see the pole dancing sequence if you don’t believe me! :P). Outside of that we get great little performances from Ray Liotta of all people, Mark Wahlberg who appears allergic to shirts and William Fichtner of Prison Break fame.

In a nutshell, while not the necessary brainless and hilarious comedy I expected, Date Night is a fantastic fun movie that should be seen by married couples and fans of Steve Carell’s brand of humour. The chemistry between the lead actors is fantastic and there is actually quite a sweet story driving this madcap laugh a minute story, making Date Night well worth shelling your hard earned bucks out on!

Running Scared. For pretty much the whole movie actually!

Related Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Date_Night

Thursday night out and a special delivery! My Life 14 SEP 2007

I had a rather nice evening last night. Squeezed in an embarrassing gym session after work (embarrassing because I couldnt make it through the super circuit for the first time ever – man I’ve become unfit. Need to get back into squash ASAP!), followed by me wolfing down a quick supper of fried eggs and chicken steaklets before rushing off to pick up a special delivery from Chantelle at her parents place.

Surprise, surprise, she caught me out. There awaiting me with a bottle of wine, box of chocolates and even a delivery note, was my very babe herself (and here I thought it might have been something edible. Well, I guess she is kinda edible).

From there we dashed off to grab my stuff from the flat quickly and then headed off to Tygervalley, to meet up with the rest of the family for our pre-booked Rush Hour 3 evening. Luckily the cinema wasnt full, so I could organise a ticket for Chantelle in a seat next to our booked ones. After the entertaining movie, pops, mom, ryan, Chantelle and I headed off for some coffee and muffins, spending about an hour there chatting away and generally making a nuisance of ourselves (Eventually mom and Chantelle had to hush us quiet – we were being so loud that we were attracting stares. Apparently. I think they just wanted to be part of the conversation XD). –

After all that was said and done, Chantelle and I headed back home, safe in the knowledge that the bottle of wine and Lindt chocolates were awaiting our return – which explains why I only got around 3 hours of sleep last night! :)

See, told you it was a pleasant evening.