Amazing food, great service and an amazing ambiance. Since opening in August, reviews of Marble restaurant have been pouring in and many of the reviews I’ve read have only been positive. So in late December, I got my chance to review Marble.
Marble is located in Rosebank, Johannesburg – about 5 minutes from Rosebank Mall. Parking is on the street or wherever you can find parking, which can be a bit frustrating if you’ve never been in the area before. And then finding the restaurant does require having a vague idea of knowing where you are going. Or maybe I just missed all the signs.
After finally finding the correct floor on the correct side of the Trumpet on Keyes building, we were welcomed by hosts to Marble. And then proceeded to our table, where the rest of our companions were.
Once the drinks were taken, we ordered our food from our friendly waiter. Starters were the Blackened Octopus and the Overnight Coal Roasted Soup.
When eating octopus it’s important to remember that it is a chewy food and needs to be well-tenderised. The octopus on my plate was beyond chewy. At one point I just gave up. My jaw was getting sore from chewing on the same piece before swallowing. On the parts I could eat, the salsa added spiciness and a bit of bitterness, while the chorizo added saltiness. I can understand what the dish was supposed to be and it would’ve been delicious if the octopus was a bit more tender.
The other starter was the Overnight Coal Roasted Soup – the soup of the day, which was a tomato soup. This was lovely and delicate but nothing amazing. It was, at the end of the day, a warm tomato soup.
On to the mains, which arrived 15 minutes after we were done with the starter. The first was the pork belly that is grilled and served with smoked peppers, Asian slaw and cherries. I love pork belly. It’s a delicious meat that is always tender. However, the pork belly from Marble was tender for the first bite and the rest was chewy. It was odd how the first part of the pork belly was fine and the rest was chewy. It was not an enjoyable experience. However, if the pork belly was tender it would’ve been delicious as the accompaniments added crunchiness and hint of sweetness from the cherries. But the pork crackling (or rind) was delicious and I did finish that first.
Another main was the rib-eye, which was cooked perfectly to the requested medium-rare. The chipotle sauce was spicy and the pickle added a little bitter taste and crunch. But it wasn’t anything mind-blowing. Just a normal rib-eye with some accompaniments.
Lastly, dessert was the ice cream sandwiches because how can say say “No” to ice cream sandwiches. And we were full from the last 2 courses. Out of the 3 options, the almond meringue with halva ice cream was selected. The meringue was delicious and cracked perfectly and the ice cream was sweet.
While it seems to be hit or miss with Marble’s dishes, the presentation of the dish was always attractive and inviting.
In terms of service, I was left wanting. In many cases, our waiter had to be tracked down to order another bottle of wine, or water, or to ask for the table to be cleaned. But when the waiter was serving us, he was friendly and pleasant.
For a hyped-up restaurant, Marble did leave me feeling a bit cheated. Previous patrons had gushed about how amazing the food was and how great the view. While I agree that the view is fantastic, the food was average for me. And my companions agreed. I don’t think I’d come to the restaurant again, but I will go the bar area and have a few drinks. That was a fun experience and the view adds to the experience.
It should also be noted that the restaurant and bar interior design was attractive. The high ceilings added space to the room. I can understand why the interior design cost a pretty penny. It added light and warmth to the area.
To summarise, the food at Marble is quite average but the ambiance and the view definitely make it an experience. Based on the above, I’ve given Marble 2.5 cupcakes:
No rating (read: why have you even bothered to open)
Poor (read: shit)
Average (read: meh)
Good (read: above mediocrity)
Very Good (read: fling your money at them. It’s worth it)
Extraordinary (read: if you have to make a sacrifice to be here, do it)