London


Yesterday I had the goosebump experience of being introduced to the new-in-the-making Gåte at Quoin Rock restaurant at the Quoin Rock winery outside Stellenbosch, which is destined to become a superlative Fine Dining dinner experience, probably the best this country has ever seen!  (more…)

The Sweet Service Award goes to Emirates, for its flight from London to Dubai, on Sunday 1 July. At the check-in I was told to reduce 5 kg of weight of my suitcase, luckily having bought a hand-luggage suitcase into which I could transfer items of that weight, and having to check it in too, to avoid paying extra. My son had left my check-in too late, so I was allocated a poor seat. I asked the check-in lady if she could find me a window seat, but she told me that the fight was full, and that all such seats were taken already. She said that she would continue to try to find me a window sat, and that I should ask again at the boarding gate desk. Lo and behold, there it was, in the second row from the front, in the company of a (more…)

In celebration of dancing for the past 18 months, I am launching my first book ‘SwitchBitch: My Journey of Transformation from Sour to Sweet!’ next Sunday 25 March at Cape Town’s best loved dance party at La Parada Constantia Nek, with music created by DJ René and his team.  (more…)

Yesterday Leeu Collection announced that it has acquired a new property, its first in London. The current office block 55 Newman Street is to be turned into an 100-bedroom luxury hotel, planned to open its doors in 2019.  (more…)

In an exciting ceremony live streamed from Melbourne at midday, Eleven Madison Park was named as the best World’s 50 Best Restaurant, an accolade it last achieved seven years ago. A number of exciting restaurant rankings are reflected in the 2017 World’s 50 Best Restaurant list. I have been fortunate to eat at some of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants in New York, London, and in France, in the past ten months. Our reviews of some of these follow below. (more…)

On 5 April Chef Heston Blumenthal will receive the Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award at the World’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards in Melbourne, it was announced last week. Chef Heston owns The Fat Duck in Bray, which was at the top of the World’s 50 Best Restaurant list in 2005, and Dinner by Heston Blumenthal at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park in London, the 45th World’s Best Restaurant, which I visited for lunch last July. (more…)

The Sweet Service Award goes to SAA, and its crew on the flight from London to Johannesburg on 27 February. It was a very empty flight, and the staff was extremely friendly in looking after us. Nothing was too much trouble. The only thing that did not work was the cellphone charger, the hostess telling us honestly that it does not work throughout the plane! It was a concern for tourism that the plane was only one quarter full

 

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Today I depart on a two-week eating tour of France, continuing my World’s 50 Best Restaurant journey I began in New York and London in July last year. There is no more exciting start to my culinary trip than dinner at JAN restaurant in Nice on Wednesday, given that it has just been awarded the 2017 Michelin one-star rating. In February 2016 owner Jan-Hendrik van Der Westhuizen did our country proud, in becoming the first South African chef to own a Michelin-star restaurant.  (more…)

imageA.A. Gill passed away in London on Saturday, by far the best known and revered restaurant critic in the world. His passing leaves a huge gap, in that Gill was not only a critical critic, but he was a wordsmith of note. I am sad that I did not read him more regularly,but am trying to catch up. (more…)

cuvee-clive-graham-beckGraham Beck flagship MCC Cuvée Clive 2009 has been named best South African sparkling wine at the 2016 Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships held in London earlier this week, at an event attended by a hundred top sparkling wine and champagne producers from around the world. (more…)

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