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“Great food, incompetent front of house staff, average venue”

The Stellenbosch Wine Bar and Bistro
Ranked #1 of 134 Restaurants in Windhoek
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $8 - $16
Cuisines: International
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Breakfast, Delivery, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Description: A lovely venue, a fine selection of private cellar wines and exclusive rights to serve the premium meat produce of Namibia!
Reviewed June 17, 2013 via mobile

We decided to try this relatively new addition to the Windhoek dining scene to see how it compares. Mixed results...
We made a booking the day before, but strangely the staff member did not ask for any contact details, only when prompted realised this is necessary.
The next evening the real frustration started. The location and directions here on TripAdvisor seems incorrect, since it took us to a deserted intersection about 10min drive from the actual restaurant. I then called the restaurant to ask directions, and not one staff member seemed able to help. When asking for the manager we were told "sorry he is busy". Eventually another person offered to help, so instead of directions I told him where we are and to give us the closest intersection to the restaurant, since at least this I could look up on my Garmin GPS. And yes we had several maps of Windhoek, a GPS and an iPhone to help us get there... Anyway, this staff member said "Drive to Jan Jonker road and then look out for the Bougainvillas complex." When asked if it's a shopping complex or a housing complex he just said "yes", sigh...
So we drove, and by luck spotted the "complex" BEFORE Jan Jonker road. Now really, who in their right mind gives a road to look out for AFTER the destination? Where's the common sense?
So we arrived, and then had further frustration when they told us we do not have a booking... Then a manager arrived and said oh wait we do have a booking and showed us to a table.
The table itself was poorly set, incomplete and wobbling. Only after I pointed this out to our waitress did she correct it. Water and wine was served, strangely we were given ice to put into our wine without asking for it, and this in a "Wine Bar".
And now the worst aspect, the acoustics... The place was busy, sure, but it has TERRIBLE acoustics. Hard surfaces everywhere, floor to ceiling, so you end up sitting there staring at each other because conversation is impossible unless you like to shout. It's so bad you cannot here the person right next to you, yet somehow you can hear word for word what the person 10m away from you in the far corner is saying. They really have to attend to this. We asked to move to a quieter table but were told this was not possible. So we sat and stared and waited for our food.
At least the food was VERY good. The Lambs tongue started was fantastic, Pork belly a little fatty but very good, and my fish was excellent, succulent and tasty. Clearly the chef knows what he is doing.
During the meal a manager did ask us if we are enjoying our meal, and we told him the food is good, but since conversation was impossible due to the noise, I did not feel up to explaining our frustrations to him at length.
The service itself during the meal was poor, inconsistent, wine glasses were either left empty of overfilled, water not topped up, plates cleared without waiting for all diners to finish eating.
Overall this was disappointing. For the image they portray and the prices they charge they fall far short in too many areas. The food is great, but the rest, oh dear...

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    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
2  Thank KarmaTraveller28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael S, General Manager at The Stellenbosch Wine Bar and Bistro, responded to this reviewResponded June 25, 2013

Good Day KarmaTraveller28

Thank you very much for taking the time to post a review about our establishment.

While it pleases me to see that you enjoyed your meal so tremendously much; it is with great disappointment that I also read that you encountered such frustration both in terms of locating The Stellenbosch Wine Bar and Bistro but also in terms of our general service and ambience.

We do most certainly recognise that locating a restaurant in an unfamiliar town can be frustrating and for this reason we have made maps available on both our website and facebook page as well as listing our physical street address on TripAdvisor, Twitter and foursquare. I do apologise that this was not conveyed through to you nor could our staff efficiently assist you and that you subsequently continued to struggle to locate The Stellenbosch Wine Bar and Bistro

While we do emphasise the delivery of a tasty meal we do also pride ourselves in providing friendly and efficient service in an enjoyable and comfortable setting. While your meal seems to have been enjoyable; 1 out of 3 is simply not good for one of our guests and for this I do whole-heartedly apologise.

I would again like to thank you for both your positive comments and constructive criticism of the different facets of your evening spent with us; as this is the best way for us to learn and improve on the final product delivered to you.

I can assure you that we have already implemented corrective measures and look forward to you hopefully visiting us again soon so that we may deliver to you the true Stellenbosch Wine Bar and Bistro experience.

Feel free to contact me should you wish to make a reservation or discuss your dinning experience further.

Kind Regards

Michael Smith
Manager

Email: michael@thestellenboschwinebar.com
Cell: +264(0)81 668 4572
Tel: +264(0)61 309 141
Fax: +264(0)61 309 142

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (695)
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448 - 452 of 695 reviews

Reviewed June 13, 2013

We took friends from UK for a dinner and we were really pleased to have chosen this place.exhaustive wine selection , excellent dessert selection, being strict vegetarian we had limited choice in food.

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Thank Valmiksoni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

We heard a lot about this new (I don't think it is that new, we just have not been around for a while...) Restaurant in Windhoek and am glad we gave it a try. We celebrated a special birthday and everyone at the table enjoyed the evening. The atmosphere is lovely and the decor is in the typical wine farm style.

Be careful which table you select, as they sometimes use what looks like 'outside furniture' inside, which can get a little uncomfortable when enjoying a late night.

Jesika our waitress was superb! She had a genuine smile throughout, was friendly, attentive and made sure our glasses were always topped up. You seldom find a good waiter in Windhoek; well done!

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Thank nemrac9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

Stellenbosch is one of the best restaurants in Windhoek with excellent service and food that never is disappointing!

Thank Elecia D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2013

Great spot for lunch or dinner. Sit inside or outside - the setting is beautiful. Excellent food and great S. African wines.

Thank Pivo_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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