I had the luck to have enjoyed a 16 course Tasting Menu dinner soon after the opening of Gåte Restaurant at Quoin Rock outside Stellenbosch, in November. I was blown away by the creativity of the dining experience, and its experiential nature, with Molecular Gastronomy, something I had not experienced at this international level in my dining experiences locally and internationally. On Tuesday a week ago I returned to Gåte, to try the new dishes on the Tasting Menu, as well as those that have changed in the past three months, while my friend from Paris ate the Tasting Menu for the first time, at her invitation. Continue reading →
The host of the evening will be their Beef Farmer and Butcher Mark Muncer, who will guide guests through a three-course dinner focusing on ‘natural, ethically raised meat’, offered in four venues Continue reading →
Wesgro has announced that it is focusing on Wine and Food Tourism as ‘strategic priority’ in its 2015 – 2019 implementation plan Judy Lain, Wesgro Chief Marketing Officer, has announced. Globally Food Tourism generates $150 billion estimates the World Food Travel Association. As many as 88% of destinations in the world see Food Tourism as an important differentiating factor in defining the image of brands and destinations, and assists in fighting Seasonality and in creating jobs.
At the recent General Assembly of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation it was Continue reading →
Last night’s MasterChef consisted of two parts – a happy team of eight Finalists driven to the home in the Karoo of cookbook writer Syddah Essop, and a nervous looking team of three Finalists who had to cook in the Pressure Test without electricity, which saw Ndumiso Mncwabe leaving the MasterChef SA kitchen.
The team met Syddah Essop, writer of ‘Karoo Kitchen‘, and she shared her knowledge about Karoo Cuisine with the Finalists. Syddah grew up in Beaufort West, in the heart of the Karoo. She traveled from farm to farm in the area with her father, who sought to protect the rights of farmers. In this way she learnt a lot about the Karoo locals and their food. It took her three years to compile ‘Karoo Kitchen’, as a salute to the culture and heritage of the Karoo. The cookbook contains a diversity of local dishes, including standards such as melktert, rusks, Karoo lamb, and even sheep’s head! The cookbook has received acclaim for documenting the Karoo cooking culture and heritage. Syddah prepared a table full of Karoo delights for the Finalists. Continue reading →
Cape Town’s restaurants are feeling the hospitality winter blues, with a large number of restaurants announcing their restaurant specials. The winter has claimed its casualties too, and there could be more in what has been a poor winter for many businesses.
La Mouette has opened at 78 Regent Road in Sea Point. Brio is a new jazz restaurant, in half of the ex-Riboville in town (on the Adderley Street side), while Liquorice and Lime has taken over the other half of Riboville (on the St George’s Mall side). Van Hunks has opened at 1 Union Street, off Kloof Street in Gardens. Cafe Nood has opened in Wilderness Road, Claremont. Ryan’s Kitchen has opened at Rusthof guest house in Franschhoek – the chef Ryan Smith is ex-Mont Rochelle. On Broadway has moved to the New Space Theatre building at 44 Long Street, with a new restaurant where Anytime was. Buena Vista Social Club has moved to the top end of Portswood Road in the Waterfront. The House of Meat has opened in the Pepper Club Hotel, corner Long and Bloem Streets, offering a full braai for R 295, from 3 pm every day. Amazink, ex-Roots, in Khayamandi in Stellenbosch, has opened, with Bertus Basson from Overture an advisor. Spiros has opened in Hout Bay. Mason’s Cafe & Grill has opened in the ex-Cafe Gainsbourg. La Cantina has opened in the Alliance Francaise. The De Leuwen Jagt restaurant on the Seidelberg wine estate outside Paarl has opened The Fabulous Bakery. Gesellig has opened on the corner of Church and Regent Roads in Sea Point, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner. Chez d’Or has opened in Franschhoek, with Richard Carstens as consultant Chef, scheduled to stay until September, but he left on 28/7. It has been confirmed that Carstens will take over the running of Tokara in October, given that Etienne Bonthuys is set to open a new restaurant on Dorp Street in Stellenbosch. Gesellig is a cosy and friendly new eatery in Sea Point. Indochine has opened at the Delaire Graff wine estate in Stellenbosch. The Long Table Restaurant and Cafe has opened at Haskell Vineyards in Stellenbosch. The Wild Peacock Food Emporium has opened in Stellenbosch. Knife Restaurant has opened in the Crystal Towers Hotel & Spa, a sister restaurant to Fork. De Oude Bank Bakkerij has opened in Stellenbosch. Cafe Le Chocolatier has taken over from Cafe Vendome in Place Vendome in Franschhoek. Leaf Restaurant and Bar has opened where Portofino/The Showroom were located. Epicerie Fine is the new name of the L’Ermitage Deli in Franschhoek, and has a new owner. Sommelier Restaurant at the Sante Hotel and Wellness Centre has re-opened. Illyria coffee shop has opened in the Eikestad Mall in Stellenbosch. Babylonstoren is to open a restaurant in October, next door to Backsberg. The Fish Shack has opened at The Paddocks in Milnerton. Reubens at One&Only Cape Town has opened. Luigi’s from Hout Bay is said to be opening where Vista Mare was in The Promenade in Camps Bay. Satay Bar has taken over from Zucca in Kloof Street. Pierneef Ã La Motte has opened at La Motte. Luke Dale-Roberts, ex-chef at La Colombe and making 12th place on the Top 50 Restaurants in the World list earlier this year, will be opening The Test Kitchen at the Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock in November. Sofia’s at Morgenster will open in Somerset West in November. Down South will open on Long Street in October. French Toast has opened at 199 Bree Street, a tapas and wine bar. Babel opens at Babylonstoren next to Backsberg on 14 November. Hemelshuijs has opened at 71 Waterkant Str, serving breakfast and lunch, and dinner on request.
Portofino, which opened where The Showroom was, has closed its doors. The first review of Portofino appeared on this blog. Cafe Gainsbourg on Kloof Street, Anytime on Long Street, Josephine’s Patisserie, Ginja, maze at the One&Only Cape Town, La Table de France in Sea Point, Panarotti’s and Shimmi’s Bar in Hermanus, Miguel’s in Plettenberg Bay, and Bouillabaisse and La Brasserie in Franschhoek have also closed down. Camil Haas, the co-owner of Camil’s in the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel, has left the restaurant, but is doing food and wine pairing evenings in Franschhoek, and has joined Reuben’s, substituting for Reuben Riffel in Franschhoek and at the One&Only. Yum in Vredehoek has closed down. In Camps Bay the Cape Town Fish Market and Terra Mare have closed down. Luke Dale-Roberts is no longer the Executive Chef at La Colombe, but will consult to the restaurant. Tank in the old Cape Quarter is to get a new name. Cafe des Arts has taken over from Topsi’s in Franschhoek. Satay Bar has taken over from Zucca in Kloof Street. shu has closed down on Main Road, Green Point, and it appears that Camil’s has too. Madame Zingara has left Cape Town, to pitch her tent in Johannesburg. Le Quartier FranÃ§ais has clsoed iCi, and has opened The Common Room.
Some restaurants are closing to have a winter break. The Mount Nelson’s Cape Colony re-opens with a new interior and new menu on 1 November. Vaudeville has closed between August and October. Marianna’s in Stanford is re-opening on 14 October. The Salmon Bar in Franschhoek re-opens on 1 November, undergoing renovations in a new location (parts of ex-Bouillabaisse and Pam Golding venue). Massimo’s Pizza Club in Hout Bay has gone into winter hibernation, and is likely to reopen in November, in a new venue across the road from its previous venue in Hout Bay, with the new name Massimo’s. Mario’s, which had to close during the World Cup due to a fire in the kitchen, has re-opened.
The following restaurant specials have been announced (NOTE: This Specials list is updated continuously). WE HAVE STARTED A NEW SPRING/SUMMER SPECIALS LIST
We have seen our list used without acknowledgement on other bloggers’ blogs – please acknowledge Whale Cottage Portfolio Blog as your source:
* The Cru Cafe in the Cape Quarter: buy 1 wine flight, get 1 free, served with snacks, all days of week, lunch and dinner
* Wang Thai: 2 courses including rice R 69, at V&A Waterfront, Constantia, Somerset West, and Lagoon Beach branches, until 30 November
* Andiamo in the old Cape Quarter: R 49 breakfast special (juice, cooked breakfast, cappuccino), until 11h30 daily; 2 pizzas or 2 pastas with 2 glasses of wine R 125; Basil, chilli chicken/salmon salad with bottle of water or colddrink R 59, until 31 October. Tel (021) 421-3687
* Pure at Hout Bay Manor: 3 course dinner for R 200, and R 280 with a glass of wine added
* Vanilla in the Cape Quarter: 1/2 price sushi 12 – 6 pm, 25 % off cocktails
* Pepenero in Mouille Point : sirloin and chips R 79, seafood platter R 129, prawn platter R 99, oysters R 9 each, half-price sushi, spaghetti bolognaise R59
* Sinn’s Restaurant at Wembley Square: lunch (6 options) at R 50. 3-course dinner at R 135.
* Hussar Grill, in Camps Bay and Green Point: 400g beef ribs, 200g rump/sirloin steak, 200g boerewors R99, until stocks last
* Pepper Club on the Beach in Camps Bay: “Nip and Tuck promotion” – Prawn platter R98; Potjies R79,95; Sirloin and Prawn combo R89,50; Seafood platter R139,95; half-price sushi – until end October
* Kuzina in the new Cape Quarter: Meze platter for two plus bottle of wine R 189, Mondays – Fridays 12h00 – 18h00 and Sunday evenings from 18h00. Continuous. Tel (021) 418-8000
* Saul’s Sushi@Vegas, 118 Main Road, Sea Point: “Eat as much as you like” sushi R 120 Mondays and Tuesdays, “two for the price of one” sushi Fridays and Saturdays
* Theo’s on Beach Road, Mouille Point: oysters R 6 each, 1 kg prawns R 99, line fish R79, for lunch and dinner. 300 gram sirloin steak, spatchcock chicken peri peri and 500 gram spare ribs all R 79 for lunch only. Full sushi platter R99, half platter R50. Tel (021) 439-3494.
* 1800 in the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel, Main Road, Green Point: 300g sirloin steak R99. Until end October.
* Myoga at Vineyard Hotel, Newlands: 6 course dinner, with 5 choices per course, for R 150, Mondays – Saturdays, continues throughout summer
* Tank in old Cape Quarter: 2 courses R R140, 3 courses for R 165, both with a glass of wine, until end October. Tel (021) 419-0007
* Beluga, The Foundry, Green Point: 1 kg prawns R99; 50 % off sushi Sundays – Mondays from 12h00 – 19h00. Tel (021) 418-2948.
* The Kove, Victoria Road, Camps Bay: 2-course meal with glass of wine R120; Fish and chips R 79, 400g ribs R75, Oysters R 9, Seafood Platter R129, Rump 250gm R 79, Rump 500gm R 109, 1kg of prawns R 99, Lamb chops R99. Tel (021) 438-0004
* Cafe Sofia in Camps Bay, Green Point, etc: Breakfats specials, Burger R59, Chicken skewers R59.
* 221 Waterfront: two drinks for price of one, Mondays – Fridays, 16h30 – 18h30, two dishes on “Lite” and Sushi sections of menu for the price of one, 3-course dinner for R 135
* Jakes in the Village/on Summerley, in Steenberg and Kenilworth, respectively: 25 % off all dishes, 5 – 7 pm only, Mondays – Saturdays, until end September
* Buitenverwachting in Constantia: 2 courses R 149, 3 courses R 169, 4 courses R 199
* Duchess of Wisbeach, corner Main and Wisbeach Roads, Sea Point – free bottle of wine for a table of four
* Le Restau Paradiso, Kloof Street: Marie’s Menu 3 courses R 110; Capetonian Menu 3 courses R 130; French Classics Menu 3 courses R 150, until December.
* A Tavola in Claremont: 50 % off all pasta dishes on Mondays.
* The Lookout Deck, Hout Bay: 6 prawns free with specific main courses; 6 oysters R 36 (5 – 7 pm only), until end September
* La Mouette, Regent Road, Sea Point: 6 courses for R 175. Express Lunch – 2 courses (with 2 choices each) at R 99. Monday – Saturday dinner, Tuesday – Sunday lunch, until launch of Summer menu at Garden Party on 10 October. Tel (021) 433-0856
* Blonde restaurant, Hatfield Street: “two …blondes are better than one” promotion of 25 % off the bill, until September
* Lagoon Beach, Milnerton – 2 course meal from R 75, “all-you-can-eat” Sunday buffet R 99
* Jardine, Bree Street: 3-course dinner at R 180, Tuesdays – Saturdays
* Berthas in Simonstown: 1 kg mussels, 1 kg Queen prawns or 1 kg mini seafood platter cost R 99 each
* Ricks Cafe Americain, lunch special for R 39, Mondays – Saturdays, until 31 October
* The Square Restaurant, Vineyard Hotel, Newlands: 5-course dinner costs R 165. Tel (021) 657-4500
* Pepperclub Luxury Hotel & Spa: 6 oysters and a glass of bubbly R60, Fridays from 16h00, with jazz
* Aubergine: 2-course lunch R184, 3-course lunch R235, Wednesdays – Fridays
* Balducci’s: All pizzas (except Flaming Prawns) R49, 26-piece Platinum Sushi Plate for R99, Burgers from R55. Monday – Sunday, 12h00 – 18h00.
* Ferrymans, V&A Waterfront: 3-course pairing meal, with wines matching starter and main course, at R200, until September.
* Saul’s Taverna: for every meal ordered from main menu, the second person get’s a free main course from chef’s special menu
* Societi Bistro: “Tour of France” – 3-course French menu R 150, until October
* Chapman’s Peak Hotel, Hout Bay: Moelas Estufadas R35, Escargots R35, Oxtail R99, Hake and squid, chorico R29, Hake Fillet R69, Butternut and feta lasagne R69. Tel (021) 790-1036
* Quay 4: Snoek and chips R59, until October
* Black Marlin: Snoek on braai R55, half crayfish on braai R75, Saturdays and Sundays; 3 course meal plus glass of sherry R125, until October
* Hildebrand: 2 courses R 89, 3 courses R 120, until September
* Chenin Restaurant and Bar: Sirloin steak R60. Tel 021 425-2200
* Leaf Restaurant and Bar : 51 % off sushi from 11h00 – 16h00 and all day Sunday, 18 prawns for R69, 50 % off dimsum. Current
* Gesellig, Regent Road, Sea Point: 2 courses plus soup or dessert = R 90 for dinner; lunch costs R40 for dishes usually costing R65 – R77 12h00 – 14h00
* The Fish Shack Restaurant and Wine Bar, Paddocks, Milnerton: Shack Platter and glass of wine R 90
* Blowfish in Blouberg: Seafood platter R 89, 20-piece sushi platter + glass of wine R99, 500g rump steak R 95, Chicken schnitzel R75, Prawn platter R69, Thai seafood curry R79, Mixed Grill Espetada R95, until October. Tel 021 556-5464
* Ocean Basket: Starter, seafood platter, and bottle of Two Oceans wine for 2 for R 235 (only at Hout Bay, Plumstead, Tygervalley and V&A branches), until 31 October.
* Live Bait, Kalk Bay Harbour: pan-fried paprika calamari R50, until end October, Monday – Thrursday lunch, Sunday – Thursday dinner, tel 021 788-4133
* Bamboo, below Cape Royale Hotel: unlimited prawns at R 95 on Sunday evenings, 10 oysters for price of 8
* Cape Town Fish Market: 2 courses R 59, 3 courses R 69, (snoek patÃ©, 200 g hake and chips, koeksisters) until 17 October
* Cafe Chic: 3 courses R130, half price cocktails Wednesdays, until October. Tel (021) 465-7218
* OYO at V&A Hotel : 500g crayfish special R185. Current
* Krugmann’s Grill, V&A Waterfront: 200g sirloin steak and 4 prawns R 65; chicken or beef burger with chips for lunch only 12h00 – 17h00 R29, both offers until end October
* Spur: rump and sirloin, and beef or chicken schnitzel all R 59,95, until end October
* Dale’s Black Angus Grill, Tableview: Beef Burger, Minute Fillet Steak and Egg, Mussel and Lobster Pot, Zuricher Geschnetzeltes, all R40; Liver R35; Fish & Chips R30; Castle Draft R12, until end October Tel (021) 551-7776
* Allee Bleue, outside Franschhoek: choice of three 250 gram steaks at R 99, including a glass of estate wine, May – September. Tel (021) 874-1021
* Olivello, Klapmuts, outside Stellenbosch: 2-course meal R 99, 3-course meal R 119.
* Le Bon Vivant in Franschhoek: 2-course meal for R 150, 3 courses for R 175, until end October. Tel (021) 876-2717
* Cuvee, Simonsig wine estate, outside Stellenbosch: 2 course lunch or dinner + glass of wine R 170, 3 courses R 200, August – October
* Bosman’s, Grand Roche Hotel, Paarl: 3-course lunch and 2 glassses of wine for R 260, Sundays
* Lanzerac Hotel in Stellenbosch : 3 course lunch R 235
* Le Petite Ferme, Franschhoek: 2 courses R 100, 3 courses R 150, plus carafe of wine, live music, every Friday evening, until end October
* Ryan’s Kitchen at Rusthof, Franschhoek : 5 course meal Taste of Africa R395, with wine added R595. Summer Tel (021) 876-4598.
* Noble Hill, Klapmuts: Farmer’s Lunch costs R 62, Mondays – Fridays
* Restaurant Christophe, Stellenbosch: business lunch – 2 courses R130, 3 courses R 150, Tuesday – Friday, served within one hour, all year
* Allora in Franschhoek: 3 course menu at R89, until end November. Tel (021) 876-4375.
* CafÃ© Nadine, L’Ermitage, Franschhoek – pasta, sald and glass of wine R69. Tel (021) 876-9200
* Waterkloof Restaurant at Waterkloof in Somerset West: Summer special – 2 courses R140, 3 courses R170, and includes a tasting of 5 Waterkloof wines. Tel (021) 858-1491
* L’ermitage, Franschhoek: 2 course meal and glass of wine R85. Until end October. Tel (021) 876-9200
* Season in Hermanus: 2 course meal R 75, bredie of the day R 48, Sunday roast R 65, 3-course Sunday lunch R 110. Tel (028) 316-2854
* Mediterrea in Hermanus: 3 course meal R 195, Monday – Thursday dinners and Sunday lunches
* The Class Room, Hermanus: 5 course gourmet dinner, R 165, Wednesdays – Saturdays, until end October. Tel (028) 316-3582
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com
Copyright: Whale Cottage Portfolio
Three weeks after first visiting Vaudeville, I returned with family. I am a firm believer of the “second-time-round syndrome”, which can make one disappointed when one returns to an hospitality establishment, due to the service and product mix differing each time. Everything was different, except the show, which is still as good as ever.
When we arrived at Vaudeville I was spoken to by the girl at reception as if was a third party. My three guests had already arrived, but were not given a welcome drink. Our waitress Elaine left much to be desired, and the service became progressively worse during the evening. She did not know what “vintage” meant. Our Neil Ellis Shiraz never returned to the table after the first round was poured by a very rough and unpolished barman doing us the “honours”. We were never offered any more wine by the waitress, nor told that it was supposedly finished. Jennifer claimed that I had my back to the table to see the show, and did not see the waiter pour more wine, but no further wine was brought to the table.
A positive surprise is that Dish caterers have listened to feedback from their customers about the food, and the main course choice and dessert had changed since our last visit. The dips, salad and ciabatta are still the starter course. The misleading “sirloin” has been replaced with rolled Karoo lamb with mustard sauce (the portion size had increased, but the sauce and the lamb preparation may not to be to everyone’s taste) and two further main course options were linefish (we were not told what fish it was), and butternut and amaretti ravioli. The dessert changed to a very bitter “bruleed” lemon tart with berries and creme fraiche. The “brulee-isation” of the dessert was not visible and could not be tasted.
The music was incredibly loud, so that we could barely speak to and hear our guests. Then we were badgered 3 times during the evening to sign the credit card slip for the first 50 % deposit, something we did not have to pay last time. I asked them to bring it with the final bill when we leave, but this did not happen. I was mad when disturbed about this during the highlight tango towards the end. By this time the waitress had disappeared completely, and we had to beg another waitress for a bill. Then the credit card machine did not work properly, nor did the stapler to staple all the paperwork together.
But worst of all was the unbearable heat. They claim to have airconditioning in the building, but we were so uncomfortably hot that the loud music and the payment hassles just became a greater issue due to the discomfort. Apparently the aircon blows above the drapes, but the drapes block the cool air from coming through into the theatre. This is an urgent area of improvement.
The GM Jennifer is very nice, but showed a not so nice side when we queried what had happened to the rest of our wine. She did bring 2 extra glasses to the table, but with huge attitude. She fobbed us off when we raised the issue of the extreme heat.
A most disappointed evening at Vaudeville. We have told so many Capetonians about it, and feel even more disappointed as a result. Vaudeville is more ‘dreadville’ than ‘wonderville’ now! Read our original review.
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com