In Afrikaans there is an expression: Ek het ‘n gly in die plek. It is human nature to remember a slight and when it is from a restaurant/hotel/winefarm there is a good chance that you will keep the grudge alive.
A few years ago, we went to the Robertson Slow Festival. First on our agenda was a safari dinner with Lord’s Winery. The traffic was slightly worse than expected so we called ahead to see if we would still make it in time. The lady on the other end assured us that they would wait for us before they headed off to the next stop.
We were pissed.
I am not the kind of person to throw a, ‘don’t you know who I think I am?’ tantrum but that day in the car, I did. Luckily we were in the Cruiser because I surely would have rolled a lighter vehicle with my pissed-offness. I had every intention of giving them the worst review that I could come up with.
When we got to the winey I decided to be more adult than I was feeling at that time and only give the organisers dirty looks when they weren’t looking. The building is quite pretty, we thought in spite of ourselves. The wine was served straight out of the barrel which we found quite charming in spite of ourselves. We found the biltong and blue cheese soup absolutely divine in spite of ourselves.
At that point they didn’t need to give us a bottle of MCC, and I really don’t want to come across as one of those bloggers whose opinion can be bought with a freebie, but it was nice that they did.
The evening was phenomenal. I can’t really remember what we ate that night but the perfect harmony between flavours still linger. The pairing of the wine was almost too good, everything blended together seamlessly into one amazing feeling of happiness.
The next evening we visited another wine farm where we experienced a very different kind of rocky night. Just like the main meal at Lord’s, I can’t for the life of me remember all the details other than a feeling of unease, that the food was uninspired and that the wine must have been paired by a beer drinker. They consistently succeeded in confirming our first impressions… that they sucked. So much so that I’m not going to bother with a more imaginative insult.
So now I only hold a grudge when the food is horrible. It’s the mature thing to do.