Earlier this morning I wrote about Restaurant Mosaic at The Orient showing up Eat Out when it was ranked in the Top 200 of the 1000-restaurant La Liste. At the Eat Out Awards two weeks ago, Chef Chantel Dartnall announced her restaurant’s withdrawal from consideration of the Eat Out Awards. This morning Chef Luke Dale Roberts followed suit, announcing the withdrawal of his The Test Kitchen from the Eat Out Awards, using the same motivation as that of Restaurant Mosaic. Is this the end of the road for the Eat Out Awards?! Continue reading →
I cannot remember when an Eat Out Awards event was so exciting in its Top 10 countdown, with so many surprise restaurants on this year’s list, reflecting how more daring the Eat Out judging team has become, no longer playing it safe, which is highly commended. Since Chef Margot Janse took over in heading the Eat Out Awards judging panel in 2018, she has been ruthless in her restaurant recognition, which we already noticed when Eat Out announced its Top 30 nomination shortlist for this year, in some of the top restaurants it excluded! Continue reading →
With rating agencies giving our economy a thumbs down, and our Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni painting a bleak picture of our economy last week, it is no surprise that there are few, if any, restaurant openings planned for the rest of the 2019/2020 summer season.
Exhibit A of Chefs Rikku O’Donnchü and Warwick King opened on Bree Street on Friday. La Chêne opened at Leeu Estates in Franschhoek two weeks ago. Cowboys & Cooks is running late in opening its planned new restaurant in De Waterkant.
Eat Out released its Top 30 shortlist for the 2019 Top 10 Restaurant Awards minutes ago. The biggest shock is that Chef Liam Tomlin’s Chefs Warehouse & Canteen has not been nominated! Just two years ago Eat Out awarded Tomlin the Chef of the Year Award!
When I first wrote that Chef Liam’s restaurant on Bree Street did not belong on the Eat Out Top 20 shortlist, when it was nominated for the first time four of five years ago, not conforming to the criteria for fine dining, Chef Liam denigrated me in Facebook and banned me from his restaurants! It seems that the new judging team at Eat Out has seen the light, and feels the same about it! Continue reading →
It was a Facebook post by Chef Jan-Hendrik van der Westhuizen of South African/French restaurant JAN in Nice that alerted me to the Hospitality Counsel 2019 ranking of our countries top ten Restaurants as well as Chefs, when he thanked them for being included in the Top 10 Chef List. No other restaurant or chef on the two lists appears to have announced the accolades from the Hospitality Counsel, awarded at an event called the 2019 Luxury Tourism Awards! Continue reading →
Winter is on our doorstep, autumn making itself felt already. Traditionally winter commences at Easter, giving the restaurant industry just three weeks to make its last bucks. The only new restaurant that I have heard open is Botanicum Café & Grill in Constantia, previously Bootlegger Café & Grill, now (silently) 50% owned by Bootlegger, as the concept was not working with the Bootlegger name, it being seen as a coffee shop and not a stand-alone restaurant.
I saw an article by Post & Courier recently, randomly as I do not follow this publication, and was attracted to its topic, being the impact of restaurant reviews and their power to close a restaurant down. Being our country’s harshest restaurant reviewer, this got me thinking about why the top chefs in our country, including Giorgio Nava, Bertus Basson, Peter Tempelhoff, Liam Tomlin, and Scott Kirton & Co are so sensitive to constructive criticism by banning (or attempting to) me from their restaurants, yet new (to our country) chef Wunderkind Rikku O’Donnchü of Gåte Restaurant welcomes it so! Continue reading →
It was a surprise announcement to read that Chef Bertus Basson has been exorcised from Spice Route wine estate outside of Paarl, and that Chef Liam Tomlin with Neil and Tina Jewell are taking over this space. It makes for an interesting discussion as to why the top chefs of our country are so determined to open one restaurant after the other, and to ask if they make any money out of it! Continue reading →
The tough conditions for the restaurant industry in Cape Town and the Winelands continue, with few restaurants opening or closing. A surprise is that Bertus Basson @ Spice Route is no longer operating, a killer negative review late last year possibly being the nail in the coffin. Now Basson only has five Stellenbosch restaurants plus all his catering assignments and TV appearances to juggle! Interesting is that Chef Liam Tomlin has opened a ‘contemporary ecological tapas’ restaurant in Barcelona, well-suited to his tapas restaurant offerings!
Restaurant history was made in this country yesterday, when a restaurant ban by Chef Peter Tempelhoff of the newly opened FYN Festaurant, instituted against me two days before the opening of the restaurant just over two weeks ago, was uplifted, in a settlement in which I agreed to make two changes to the Blogpost in which I shared the initial restaurant banning with my Blog readers. The restaurant ban contradicted a welcome to eat at the new restaurant, and a policy of patron non-discrimination, expressed to me by Chef Peter at the Eat Out Awards 2018 just ten days earlier. Continue reading →