A year ago I was introduced to the Rare Grill in Kenilworth, after it was named Best Steakhouse in the country in the Wolftrap Steakhouse Championship, as well as Eat Out Best Steakhouse in the Cape in its Everyday Eateries awards, the latter accolade repeated this year. On Saturday evening I spontaneously popped in at the steakhouse, and found its service and steak to be as good as a year ago, and its desserts even better! Continue reading →
It was disappointing to experience yet another restaurant pushing bottled water, when I requested a glass of tap water at Willoughby’s last night, it not being the only restaurant in Cape Town at which I have experienced this practice. Continue reading →
Day Zero’ – the day on which Cape Town will run out of water unless consumption is curbed further – has been extended from March to May 2018. Confusing is that the date of Day Zero varies within May, but a discussion on Kfm highlighted that the water usage in Cape Town increased since the postponement of ‘Day Zero’ to May, which could move ‘Day Zero’ back to April! Tourist arrivals and their water usage in our Summer Season is a grave concern to Capetonians. Continue reading →
Earlier this evening German TV channel 3sat broadcast a flattering 45-minute documentary on Cape Town, entitled ‘Reisen in Ferne Welten: Kapstadt’ (Travel in far worlds: Cape Town). Cape Town is Continue reading →
MasterChef Season 3 is slowly coming to an end, with only three more episodes to go. Last night it was clearly winter when episode 15 was shot in the Cape forests, the focus being foraging. It also meant the end for Mel Sutherland, who was sent home due to an unsatisfactory ‘muscle (sic) ceviche with wild garlic panna cotta and squid ink jelly‘!
On arrival at the MasterChef SA Top 5 were told that they would have to find their own ingredients in nature. Chef Pete Goffe-Wood told them: ‘The first part of this challenge you have to find your own ingredients. And you’re going to do it in the way we’ve been doing it for thousands of years – you’re going to go foraging’. The Top 5 were to go out into nature to gather Continue reading →
The Diners Club Winelist Awards for the Western Cape were held at Shimmy Beach Club yesterday, saluting the restaurants in the province, and the standard of their winelist content and presentation. Bushman’s Kloof won best Winelist in the Western Cape. During the course of this week the Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal awards will also be presented.
A judging panel, led by wine judge Dave Hughes, and consisting of Winnie Bowman, Nikki Dumas, Fiona McDonald, and Christine Rudman, evaluated 208 winelists nationally, and 100 from the ‘Cape‘, a province which has not existed for years! Diners Club threw the Western Cape and Eastern Cape into one ‘Cape’ pot in reporting on the results and in handing out the awards yesterday! A substantial number of Western Cape restaurants did not enter the competition this year, down from 96 entries last year to 80 this year.
Odd was the choice of venue, being the Bar section of Shimmy Beach Club, which did not have enough parking for the attendees, some walking for more than 1 km to get to the venue. We were welcomed with a glass of Pongracz, and the food was very meagre, being macaroni cheese croquettes and sushi! There was not enough seating for everyone, in a room which had some round tables, a few chairs and couches, but had no presence in making this function special for the award winners, compared to the venue used at the Vineyard Hotel last year. It also was not a finalist for the Winelist Awards! Very odd was using Anna Trapido as the MC, not generally known to the local restaurant wine stewards and sommeliers, in being the editor of the 2015 ‘Diners Club Rossouws Continue reading →
Last night I was invited to the first media launch in the country of FitChef, a new service of healthy meals and smoothies delivered into one’s home, as per one’s chosen mealplan. A range of options is offered, including Banting/LCHF, detox and weight loss, vegetarian, and wellness. More than 50000 meal portions and 35000 smoothies are sold around the country monthly.
Developed by founder Wayne Kaminsky, who told us that he was a superfit fitness fanatic sportsman, participating in Ironman and Cape Epic challenges, and needing to find a more healthy eating pattern to lose weight. He was using antibiotics, and could let them go when the benefits of the ‘clean eating’ came to the fore. He moved more and more to healthy foods which he enjoyed cooking, making a batch of portions over weekends, and finding them selling well when he posted photographs of them on Facebook. He started FitChef three years ago, and the Cape region was opened a year ago. Wayne has tremendous energy, and his food preparation skills were impressive, preparing our dinner simultaneously at 10 food stations, at each of which a different dish was prepared. He had prepared some of the dishes, and talked us through each food preparation station, each containing a different set of ingredients for a dish to be made. I noticed that a lot of ingredients came from Woolworths, but Wayne said that they prefer to use Pick ‘n Pay products. I questioned Wayne about his use of some Robertsons products, and he said that it was just for our dinner, and that they use fresh herbs in the factory food preparation. Continue reading →
* Africa now has 100 million Facebook users, still only half of the number of internet users on the continent. The majority of Facebook users access the site via mobile phone. While the growth in Social Media usage in Africa is massive, it is still very costly.
* The Open Book Festival will run at The Fugard Theatre for the second year running, from 17 – 21 September, with authors from 12 countries attending. Local authors will include Wilbur Smith, Zakes Mda, and Zelda la Grange.
* Shock news is the resignation with immediate effect of SA Tourism Chief Marketing Officer Jan Hutton. No reasons are provided, but the suddenness of the resignation is ominous. The industry has expressed its regret about the resignation of this dynamic marketer of our country.
* It’s a bad week for flying in Europe. On Monday a bomb scare at London Luton airport caused the cancellation of all EasyJet Continue reading →
* The United Arab Emirates publication The National praises the culinary climax of the Cape (‘South Africa: cape of good grub‘), with its ‘laughable’ prices of tasting menus and meals at some of our top restaurants in Cape Town and the Winelands, including The Test Kitchen, The Pot Luck Club, Delaire Graff (they mistakenly refer to Indochine as ‘Asiate‘) Tokara, The Tasting Room, Bread & Wine, Pierneef à La Motte, and The Greenhouse!
* South African wines will be available to taste, at no charge, at the Asheville Wine Market in North Carolina. Wines offered are Ken Forrester Petit Chenin Blanc 2013, Sutherland Chardonnay 2010, Indaba Mosaic Red 2013, and Kanonkop Kadette 2011.
* Horst Frehse has been promoted to Executive Director of the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa, with his role as Continue reading →
A fantastic last half of April weather-wise has been a ‘second wind’ for Cape Town’s restaurants, delaying the closure of restaurants which will be inevitable in the long winter lying ahead. Already April has seen six restaurant closures. This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:
* Frères Bistro has opened next door to Col’Cacchio on Hans Strydom Avenue in the city centre.
* Orphanage Cocktail Emporium is opening Orphanage Club upstairs, with 1920’s style music by live performers, later this year.
* Cavalli restaurant is said to open on the stud farm on R44, between Stellenbosch Continue reading →