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“style over substance?”
Review of Craft Trattoria - CLOSED

Craft Trattoria
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Durban
Level Contributor
56 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“style over substance?”
Reviewed 25 February 2013

I have been wanting to eating at Craft since it opened, but hadn't gotten round to it. Eventually I twisted my boyfriends arm and we did a saturday lunch late in January. The restaurant was quiet which gave it a very relaxing vibe, with great views over the ocean. Our waiter was great, bringing a big bowl of ice with my glass of wine without me asking. To eat we shared the Caesar Salad and Roast Baby Chicken. The salad, which was a 'deconstructed' version, was very tasty if a little mean on the chicken. The roast chicken however was a little dry and bland. They had a beautiful wood fire burning, and I kept hoping to see my chicken in there, but I think it was cooked in a regular oven. Unfortunately the flavours didn't compare at all to the salad.

2 weeks later I visited again with my bookclub for a mid-week dinner. We arrived early, straight after work to enjoy their happy hour (half price cocktails). We all ordered Dirty Martinis, which were not nearly 'dirty' enough and we couldn't taste the difference between the gin and vodka versions.
By the time we were ready to order, I was ready for a culinary treat. I perused the menu, not sure whether to go for the pizza or pasta option. I was quite interested in the Gordon Ramsay's Mac & Cheese - described as elbow pasta, peas, wild mushrooms, crunchy herb crumbs & crayfish tail (R95). I make a mean mac & cheese and I have been disappointed by restaurant pasta in the past, so I conferred with the manager, explaining that I'm looking for something impressive, and if he didn't think that this is it, let me know and I will order something else. He insisted that I was making the right choice.
Unfortunately the dish that arrived was quite disappointing. Firstly, was expecting a baked pasta, this was just mixed and plated. There were no herb crumbs. When I pointed this out to our waitress she returned with a bowl of croutons. The sauce itself wasn't even sticking to the pasta, what usually happens when the pasta is rinsed after cooking. There were no peas to be seen, and crayfish tail was in fact a langostine. The taste of the actual dish had a very strong blue cheese flavour that overwhelmed everything else.
When our waitress asked if we were happy with our meals, I said no, but nothing further was done. Neither of the 2 managers on duty came to ask us how our meal was.
I was disappointed in the inconsistency of the menu and the fact that the busier the restaurant got, the less we saw of the managers.
Cool decor is great, but restaurants need to deliver a whole lot more to stand a chance in Durban.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank noodle12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

36 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    11
    7
    4
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    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
60 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Italian with an edge”
Reviewed 10 January 2013 via mobile

Went for an evening meal. They have a quirky yet relaxed design. This is a more secluded residential area so slightly lacking the crowd factor needed for such an establishment. There's 2 waiters serving the restaurant so service is slowish but efficient. The menu is succinct, it includes an array of pizzas; pastas; meats and fish. As with other casual restaurants I'd suggest ordering an assortment to share. Food was of good quality and great ingredients. Great place for a meal out with friends:) do try the cannoli dessert.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MadamBK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Johannesburg, South Africa
Level Contributor
91 reviews
30 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Only if you like 3 hour meals”
Reviewed 3 January 2013 via mobile

Other than the decor, which I quite like, the restaurant reminds me of a bunch of amateurs trying to run a professional outfit.

The drinks took ages to arrive and in dribs and drabs and I could have become a pastry chef by the time the focaccia bread arrived

Our waitress reminded me of the Loch Ness monster- rarely if ever seen.

The main meals ( pizza, pasta and line fish )were ok but just not worth the overall wait.

Helpful?
Thank shaunb2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
21 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Vibey restaurant with very good food!”
Reviewed 30 December 2012 via mobile

Very nice restaurant with great food. Not the same as all the other Italian restaurants which makes a refreshing change. Definitely worth a visit.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank CandiceMoore1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Durban, South Africa
Level Contributor
48 reviews
17 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Always great- you HAVE to have the Rocky Road”
Reviewed 20 December 2012

The food here is exceptional. The Rocky Road dessert is truly sublime. Service has always been good. Lots of fun. really recommend.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
Thank tarryns495
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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