I have for some time been hearing good things about a new retail complex in Harare’s Chisipite suburb. So, I was pleased to be able to go there for the first time to have lunch at the venue’s own restaurant — Deli-cious — a cousin of the eatery of the same name at Sam Levy’s Village in Borrowdale.
restaurant review with Epicurean
The retail complex is Chisi Walk — a stone’s throw from the Chisipite shopping centre along Shortheath Road. It was once the home of Mike and Lesley O’Riordan and later became a guest house, but has now transformed into a colourful and buzzy shopping centre with a dozen or so shops, run by the O’Riordans and proving very popular, if the crowd there when we visited is anything to go by. I know that the previous Saturday the complex had hosted a late-night shopping experience and this was attended by several hundred shoppers.
Deli Walk, as it is popularly known, is owned and operated by the same team as Deli in Sam Levy Village, which has gained a strong following over the years and is one of the best things about Sam Levy’s Village. The new venue at Chisi Walk is set in the very attractive garden, alongside the swimming pool, although there is covered seating for rainy days. It’s a venue for a breakfast or lunch, as well as all-day social gatherings.
The menu features a range of substantial salads at $10 to $12, including Smoky Jo, chicken Caesar, Thai leaf, roasted butternut and herbed couscous. A children’s section offers, from $2 to $9, chicken nuggets, burgers, breakfast, pancakes, riblettes, waffles and flapjacks. There are wraps at $10 to $12, burgers from $11 to $13, toasted sandwiches from $6 to $10 and breakfasts (served until 11.30am) from $4 to $12. A selection of bakery goodies is on offer, but guests should check with the waiter for the day’s selection. Beverages include both hot and cold.
When we dined on a very hot Friday lunchtime, my guest went for the roasted butternut salad, a delightful plateful of goodness that included butternut, pecan nuts, rocket, lettuce, feat cheese and caramalised onions. I had the smoked salmon wrap, and it was extremely tasty, with lettuce, cucumber, avocado and cream cheese around the focus salmon. Both were very satisfying and portion sizes were good. We ended with coffee rather than anything from the confectionery section, and the mix of great venue and good food — as well as super service — made for a lovely luncheon.
While there, we were able to chat with Mike O’Riordan, who still runs Kasakadiki guest house on the site and has added over a dozen retail outlets, including venues offerings ceramics, textiles, lingerie, furniture, cosmetics, beads, glassware, reflexology, hairdressing, piercing and jewellery. Sharon’s Jewels has moved there from it’s former site known as One67, at 167 Enterprise Road, which is now closed. There’s a wedding planner on site and newest is the Danai Wines shop, run by Albert Nhau as his first retail outlet.
I am amazed that in these very troubling times, there is business for all these operations, and I suppose they would all say that business could, in fact, be better. But good luck to them and perhaps, as we in Zimbabwe always say, “next year will be better”. The parking space is plentiful and Mike is hoping to add more ventures to the selection of shops in coming months. It’s very suburban and relaxing and I know it’s popular with folk from all over the city, not just in neighbouring Chisipite.
There’s a children’s playground and although I did not get around to asking if the pool could be used, I should think children’s party groups would be allowed to make use of it under supervision.
Deli Walk is a delightful restaurant and opens from 8am to 4:30pm from Monday to Friday and from 8am to 1pm on Saturday. Like the shopping complex, it is closed on Sunday. There are plans to open earlier each day — probably from 7:30am — in response to requests from parents of students at nearby schools such as Chisipite junior and senior, who find this a good spot for a post-dropoff coffee. It’s at 15 Shortheath Road and more information or reservations can be made by calling 0773 199 646.