If there’s one thing that you do in 2017, it should be finding your way to Ray’s Kitchen in Salt Rock, Ballito for some contemporary dining. The pizza far exceeds any fast food joint with its fresh, authentic ingredients.
Ray’s Kitchen is located on the Dolphin Coast, a popular holiday destination for those visiting the KwaZulu Natal province. While on holiday, my aunt suggested that we try her old friends restaurant in the Ballito and I’m glad that we did. The owner, Raymond ‘Ray’ Friedman, joined us at our late lunch and told us about his world travels and how a series of entrepreneurial efforts led to opening his own restaurant. Speaking to Ray, who is so down to earth and welcoming, added a personal touch to my first experience of Ray’s Kitchen.
Book, book, book!
Upon arrival we learnt that the dinner service was already fully booked which was a bit disappointing but it said a lot about the great quality, service and ambience at this restaurant. The disappointment didn’t last long because the friendly face that met us at the door also explained that pizza is served between 15:30-17:30. We sat down, ordered some cocktails and had a chat with the owner who explained that they’ve been really busy over the last few months, so book fast to avoid disappointment.
This gem is hidden in a lush estate, with views overlooking a pool deck and natures wonders. The greenery blends in with the wooden flooring and natural lighting. I don’t know about anyone else but I absolutely love eating out at restaurants with killer views. The contemporary decor has neutral hues and classy details, fitting the menu well. The atmosphere is cool and relaxed, with minimalist table settings making it a good escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Reinvention is a thing at Ray’s Kitchen, with regular changes being made to the menu which keeps the regulars happy. On the day I visited this spot, they had specials such as prawn & chorizo and masala mussels which sounded delicious. We ordered a seafood pizza and margherita which I never order because I feel that a plain margherita is boring, this was anything but that. I could taste the freshness of all the seafood and it was cooked to perfection, so much so that I wished that they had added more. I’m a ‘toppings’ kind of girl so I appreciate it when restaurants aren’t shy with the toppings.
Let’s not forget our cocktails
What’s a good meal without a cocktail? The drinks menu is small but good. There were 4 different cocktails to choose from and I opted for a refreshing mojito as it was a scorching hot day spent at the animal farm and so I needed to cool down. The mojito had the right amount of every ingredient and it totally hit the spot.
The next time I travel to KwaZulu Natal I’ll definitely go back to Rays Kitchen to further explore the menu. It’s about a 45 minute drive away from central Durban, making for a quick getaway for locals. The range of pastas and risotto looked like something out of the TV show, Masterchef, so I have to give it a try.
Address: Ray’s Kitchen at Dunkirk – Dunkirk Estate, 1 Salt Rock Road, Salt Rock 4391
Comment below and let me know if you’ve visited any interesting spots this festive season. If you enjoyed this post then click here for another restaurant review.