I could not think it possible that the Eat Out Awards 2018 could be so refreshingly different, but it appears that new Head Judge Margot Janse has created a fresh new look at the restaurant judging criteria. Many of our top old-guard chefs took a severe beating at the Awards last night! Continue reading →
I hadn’t seen Anél Potgieter for a while, and met with her on Monday at SeaBreeze Fish & Shell, my new favorite restaurant in Bree Street, on an atypical winter’s day, at 28C. She shared details of her fun new TV program ‘Bak of Brou’. Continue reading →
At the 2016 Eat Out Awards, held yesterday in the Arena of GrandWest over a Gala Lunch prepared by some of our country’s top chefs, some winners were predictable, and others were a surprise. It was a slick event with a Garden theme, which led many to predict that La Colombe would be the Restaurant of the Year, given its Forest menu theme. Sadly it was not, The Test Kitchen (controversially) named Restaurant of the Year for the fifth time! Nine out of the Top 10 restaurants are from Cape Town and the Winelands (Cape Town 3, Franschhoek 3, Somerset West 2, Stellenbosch 1, and Gauteng 1) Continue reading →
It could have been a disaster, changing the venue from the Mistico Equestrian Centre outside Paarl to the SunEvents Centre at GrandWest two days prior to the 17th Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards 2015 today. It turned out to be the best Friday the 13th disaster for New Media Publishing, organizers of the Eat Out Awards, described by many as the best Eat Out Awards ever! Continue reading →
The Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant Awards event is a highlight on the restaurant calendar, held for the 17th year, and at Thunder City for the first time last night. The results surprised, with one heavyweight chef sliding right off the Top 10 list, while a new restaurant made Top 10. Two restaurants which did not make the Top 20 Restaurant shortlist in 2013 flew back into Top 10 last night. Stellenbosch remains the Gourmet Capital of South Africa (4 Top 10 restaurants), followed by 3 in Johannesburg, and 1 each in Cape Town, Franschhoek, and Hermanus. While the award recipients were acceptable, the food was a disaster.
Thunder City is not an ideal venue for a function of this magnitude (800 guests, but advertised as 1000 initially), being difficult to find – the petrol station one block away from the turn-off had no clue where Thunder City is, and there were no signs off Borcherds Quarry Road, other than some posters held by men, only visible in the last minute. I followed a taxi, there being no further signage to Thunder City. We were collected from the VIP parking by a Mercedes-Benz shuttle van, and I arrived just as the event started, Chef Pete Goffe-Wood doing a tribute to Chef Bruce Robertson, who passed away two weeks ago. The lighting was poor for Continue reading →
Yesterday The Cape Leopard Trust’s celebrated its 10th anniversary with a Charity Auction lunch at Leopard’s Leap, a perfect synergy between the good work done by the Trust, and the winery’s focus on leopards. We were treated to a fine feast prepared by three chefs, and all left happy that R519000 was raised for The Cape Leopard Trust.
Barbara Lenhard and Florian Gast of Opulent Living are an amazing powerhouse couple in organising events, in addition to publishing their Opulent Living magazine. They managed to attract 180 guests, at R1500 per head, to attend the Charity Lunch on a picture perfect day in Franschhoek. Outside Marco Cianfanelli’s sculpture of a leopard welcomed arriving guests. We were offered a glass of Leopard’s Leap Culinaria Brut MCC on arrival, and were shown to our seats, where we were lucky to have great company, including Darryl from The Light House in Paarl, and Dr Tracey and Brett Garner. Elana Afrika-Bredenkamp of the Expresso Show and her husband Ian Bredenkamp of Kfm and Cape Talk were the MCs, keeping a steady pace for the proceedings throughout the afternoon, interviewing chefs, the performers, and sponsors, which included Mercedes-Benz, FNB, and cennergi.
The outgoing CEO of the Cape Leopard Trust, and its founder, Dr Quinton Martins, became very emotional when he spoke, close to tears in seeing so Continue reading →
* The South African Wine Tasting Championships 2014 will be held at the Hilton Hotel on 2 August. Each participant will taste 50 wines, whereafter they must identify 10 wines tasted blind, out of the 50. The 50 highest scoring participants will participate at the World Championships at Champagne Bollinger in October. (received via media release from Jean-Vincent Ridon)
* The International Air Transportation Association (IATA) has warned that the new Immigration Regulations could affect the profitability of airlines serving South Africa, in that they ‘might stop people travelling‘, even if they were ‘well intentioned‘.
* London is the most visited city in the world for the third time in four years, according to the MasterCard Global Destinations Cities Index. The survey estimates that the city will receive 18,7 million visitors this year, beating Bangkok, which was ranked first last year. Paris, Singapore, and Dubai also fall into the Top 5 visitor cities list. Continue reading →
* Distell has handed over a whale disentanglement kit to the NSRI in Hermanus, funded by monies raised at the Whale Festival.
* Fewer flights leaving the UK are delayed.
* Cape Town has a new ambassador in Katie Holmes, Tweeting from Table Mountain with a photograph yesterday: ‘Beautiful day in Cape Town’.
* The SA Brandy Foundation has recognised the contribution of a number of its product drinkers, and has inducted them into the Brandy Guild of SA: Elana Afrika-Bredenkamp, Warren Haefele, Schalk Burger, Wini Bowman, Peter Pitsiladi, Mike Meyers, and Amaro Fernandes. (received via Manley Communications)
* Carlos Santana will be performing at the Grand Arena in Cape Town on 25, 26 and 27 February, his first Cape Town appearance ever.
* About 41000 visitors from around the world attended the World Travel Market (WTM) in London earlier this week.