I had not heard of the Mercado San Miguel Food Market in Madrid until the Hotel receptionist Davide told me about it, he not knowing of my interest in food. Compared to the TimeOut Market in Lisbon, the Madrid market is smaller, has less seating, but its food is more beautifully presented. Continue reading →
Tag Archives: Mozzarella Bar
Restaurant Review: Carne Bistro on Kloof Street a piccolo mix of Mozzarella Bar, Caffe Milano, and Carne!
Serendipity led me to Carne Bistro on Kloof Street last night, bumping into the Friedman family, which was eating there while I was heading to Manna Epicure next door. An invitation to join their table led me to experience the new Carne Bistro, which opened in September. The space was previously Caffe Milano, which was a favourite for their Eggs Benedict, and for the excellent service from its previous manager Charlene, who now works at the main Carne on Keerom Street.
I had not been back to the original Carne restaurant, after the exposé on this Blog about owner Giorgio Nava’s misleading claims about his beef, lamb and game being organic and coming from his Karoo farm. Nava saw the light, and removed the claims from his menus and website a year later. The restaurant (with 95 Keerom) has never made the Eat Out Top 20 Restaurant shortlist since then, despite being one of two favourite chefs (with Chef Luke Dale-Roberts) of Eat Out editor Abigail Donnelly! Nava wins a more recently created Eat Out Best of Award every year, alternating between Best Italian for 95 Keerom, and Best Steakhouse for Carne. This yearshould be a 95 Keerom year!
Some interior changes were made to the restaurant, but not really visible nor obvious. Wall shelving has been removed, and the wooden buttermilk vessels which were used as decor at the Mozzarella Bar Continue reading →
Cape Town and Winelands restaurant and chef changes continue!
An unusually high number of new restaurants has opened or will do so in the next month or two. There have never been so many chefs leaving their employers to start their own restaurants, or to join other employers! This list of restaurant openings and closings and restaurant staff movements is updated continuously, as we receive new information:
* Borage Bistro has opened in Portside, with Chef Frank Marks, previously of The Fat Duck, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, La Colombe, The Test Kitchen, and The Pot Luck Club
* Chef Chris Erasmus has opened his own restaurant Foliage in Franschhoek, having previously been at Pierneef à La Motte.
* Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.
* The Butcher Shop & Grill has opened next to Sotano in Mouille Point.
* Michael Townsend (La Parada, Lucky Fish, Harbour House emporium) is opening a steak restaurant in Muizenberg in November.
* Neil Grant and his business partner Barry Engelbrecht (of Burrata) are opening a new restaurant Bocca on the corner of Bree Continue reading →
Restaurant Review: Chalk & Cork dirty, average food, with abusive Chalk & Cheek!
I was bombarded with a barrage of Tweets when the new owners of Mozzarella Bar on Kloof Street first opened in July, having bought the business from ‘Mr Charm’ Giorgio Nava. Nava must have sold the owners Amy and Marc Botes a good dose of rudeness and cheek too, which is what I experienced when I popped in at the now renamed Chalk & Cork, waiting for my car to be washed at the Engen garage nearby, earlier this week. I enjoyed going to the Mozzarella Bar, with its charming Italian manager Simone, previoulsy.
I photographed the counter as one enters (there is no signage at the entrance, but only on the low wall of the outside seating, visible to all passing on Kloof Street (the patrons that is, and not the branding)! The waitress could not tell me why the restaurant is named Chalk & Cork, other than to say that they have a lot of wine on the winelist! She could not explain the ‘Chalk‘ part. There is a cork collection building up on both sides of the front door. The downstairs entrance doesn’t appear to have changed much, although there is more equipment against the back wall behind the counter compared to the Mozzarella Bar. The Pizza oven is still there, as is the drinks fridge. They are no longer selling Mozzarella, which will be available at Piazza Italia, up the road on Park Road. Upstairs they can seat 30 patrons. On a rainy day they have next to no business, the upstairs seating not being visible nor known. Continue reading →
High Chef turnover in Cape and Winelands restaurants, new restaurant openings continue!
For the first time in many years Cape Town has seen barely any restaurant closures this winter. There have never been so many chefs leaving their employers to start their own restaurants, or to join other employers! An unusually high number of new restaurants have opened or will do so in the next month or two.
This list of restaurant openings and closings, restaurant staff movements, and winter holiday closures, is updated continuously, as we receive new information:
* Chef Chris Erasmus has opened his own restaurant Foliage in Franschhoek, having previously been at Pierneef à La Motte.
* Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen has opened Street Food below the neighbouring hotel, offering Deluxe coffee, pastries, and Asian-inspired lunch take-outs. Operates from 7h00 – 15h00 Monday – Friday.
* Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.
* The Butcher Shop & Grill is opening next to Sotano in Mouille Point.
* Michael Townsend (La Parada, Lucky Fish, Harbour House emporium) is Continue reading →
Justin Bonello passionate and patriotic Cooked in Africa Films food TV producer! Ultimate Braai Master Season 3 on the grill!
Yesterday I was invited to attend the judging of the Cape Finals of Season 3 of Ultimate Braai Master held in the parking area of The Lookout at the V&A Waterfront. Not only was it a good way to catch up with a number of chefs who judged the Cape Finals, but it was also an opportunity to meet Cooked in Africa Films producer Justin Bonello.
Justin chatted to blogger Thuli Gogela of Mzansi Style Cuisine Blog (she appeared in the Bloggers episode of season 2 of MasterChef SA) and I as the judging came to an end at the Finals. One sensed his overriding passion for food, which has grown into TV production, with 21 productions to date, including two previous Ultimate Braai Master seasons, two seasons of Charly’s Cake Angels, as well as ‘Seasons at Terroir‘, which was launched last week and focuses on Chef Michael Broughton, and his restaurant Terroir at Kleine Zalze. Justin denied that Terroir not making the Top 20 Eat Out restaurant list last November was a blow to their production, saying that Chef Michael’s food is beyond Top 10 competitions, clearly a fan of the chef’s food. He is fascinated by the revolution of growing one’s own vegetables and herbs, and proudly showed me a photograph of his vegetable garden at home, out Hout Bay way, which will become the subject of a TV series ‘Green Time’ at the end of 2015, with seven pilot projects of vegetable gardening at schools being developed. Continue reading →
Chaotic Cape Town lacks infrastructure for Festive frenzy in Camps Bay!
Yesterday was the most chaotic day I have seen in Camps Bay in 20 years of living in the suburb. We know that New Year’s Day is busy, and is a stay-away zone, due to the thousands of Cape Town residents who come from other areas and take ownership of the beach in the suburb, without the City of Cape Town sending any reinforcements to secure the suburb. What was experienced in Camps Bay yesterday may be the deathknell for tourism in Camps Bay and Cape Town.
We warn our guests to stay away from the Camps Bay beach on 26 December and 1 January, but nothing could have prepared us for yesterday. One should have known that chaos was coming, when all the restaurants on the street level of the whole beachfront strip, with the exception of health food franchise Kauai, were closed for business! When I was advising my guests about alternatives of things to do and places to eat, I had to admit to them that most restaurants in Cape Town are closed on New Year’s Day, despite the city teeming with tourists! I drove down Kloof Street, and was pleasantly surprised that about half the restaurants on this popular restaurant street were open for business, a few proudly Tweeting that they would be open until about 22h00 last night, which is a whole lot better than last year, when only the franchise restaurants were operating. Manna Epicure, Da Vinci’s, Arnold’s on Kloof, Vovo Telo, Hudson on Kloof, Knead, Mozzarella Bar, and newly opened The Black Sheep are some of the restaurants that were operating, and should be commended for feeding the many tourists in Cape Town. The restaurants in the city centre were all closed.
In Camps Bay I needed Bay Response at my guest house, but they had to cut short their service when they were called to assist Pick ‘n Pay Camps Bay, of which the front door was being broken down by unruly beachgoers! We heard sirens throughout the day, especially early afternoon, when there was a near-drowning on Camps Bay beach, despite lifeguard services offered. The beach is just too full, and often inexperienced bathers and unsafe rip tides can lead to loss of life.
I had driven to town for a quick coffee break in the early afternoon, and it took 15 minutes to travel 250 meters from Hussar Grill Continue reading →
Restaurant Review: Emily’s lost without Chef Peter Veldsman, has sold its soul to Coca Cola!
Emily’s restaurant is 21 years old, and has recently opened at its third home on Kloof Street, having spent ten years each in Woodstock and in the V&A Waterfront. The restaurant has lost all of its previous charm, and its main attraction (Chef Peter Veldsman) is nowhere to be seen. It has sold its soul to Coca Cola, its branding seen throughout the restaurant, not befitting an establishment of the stature of Chef Peter and his partner Chef Johan Odendaal.
Chef Peter once was the most high profile food editor of Sarie magazine, and was known and loved by all, the doyen of food writers in his heyday. He has written eleven cookery books, and has contributed to many others too. He has won numerous food awards. He started the Culinary Arts Institute of Africa Restaurant School at the same time as opening Emily’s restaurant in Woodstock in 1994, long before the suburb became trendy, and it was extremely popular for a decade. I remember its quirky decor, inside an attractive building, and being particularly popular amongst Afrikaans Capetonians, it being their first real Afrikaans restaurant. Chef Johan ran the cookery school, and his students were the servers.
Surprisingly Emily’s moved to the V&A Waterfront, badly Continue reading →
Kloof Street: Cape Town’s renowned restaurant road, constantly changing!
In September last year we wrote about Kloof Street, and suggested that it be renamed FoodHood, when the ‘Name your Hood’ campaign made its short-lived appearance. Kloof Street has 38 restaurants, making it one of the most densely populated restaurant streets. In the past year seven restaurants closed down on Kloof Street, including Opal Lounge, Chez Chez, Mason’s, and St Elmo’s, with some new restaurants opening. Frommers’ travel guide calls it “The Dining Mile”.
The restaurant list ranges from inexpensive food on the run (McDonalds, Nando’s, Scooters) to fine Milanese pastries (Caffe Milano), homely baking and cooking (Manna Epicure and Tamboers Winkel), the Eat Out Top 20 Restaurant finalist fine dining Planet Restaurant at the Mount Nelson Hotel, and numerous other restaurants. The street venues offer food served over long hours, meaning that one will always find something to eat on Kloof Street, even late at night.
We have listed the restaurants on Kloof Street, starting from the bottom of Kloof Street, and working up towards Table Mountain:
* Gourmetboerie – said to open in October, where Despaco and short-lived Sabrina’s used to be. 8 Kloof Street.
* McDonalds – Monday – Sunday, open 24 hours a day.
* Best of Asia – 7 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 423-1177. Monday – Saturday 11h30 – 22h00, Sunday 11h30 – 21h00.
* Frankie Fenner Meat Merchants: Deluxe coffee, Jason’s croissants and breads. Fresh and cured meats, eggs, chicken, duck, lamb, beef, pork. Metal Lane, 8 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 424-7204. Monday – Friday 7h30 – 17h30, Saturday 9h00 – 13h00.
* Bardelli’s – Italian cuisine, with pizzas. 18 Kloof Str. Tel (021 423-1502. Monday – Thursday 18h00 – 22h00, Friday and Saturday 18h00 – 23h00, Sunday 12h00 – 22h30
* Vida e Caffe – good coffees, few snacks. 34 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 426-0627. Monday – Sunday
* Mozzarella Bar – salads, sandwiches and other dishes all contain … mozzarella, plus Puglia Cheese mozzarella to buy. R10 LavAzza cappuccino excellent value. Some Caffe Milano (sister restaurant) pastries to buy. Giorgio Nava-owned. 51 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-5822. Monday – Saturday 7h00 – 19h00.
* Nando’s – chicken, chicken, chicken! – 42 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 426-0240. Monday – Sunday
* Knead – artisan bakery sells breads and some pastries, sit-down menu serves sandwiches, pizzas, egg dishes. Lifestyle on Kloof, 50 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 671-7915. Monday 7h00 – 18h00, Tuesday – Saturday 7h00 – 23h00, Sunday 7h30 – 18h00.
* Hudson’s Burger Joint – burgers highly regarded. 69A Kloof Str. Tel (021) 426-5974. Monday – Sunday 12h00 – 23h00
* Mitico Pizzeria e Spaghetteria – 71 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-2267. Monday – Saturday 11h00 – 22h00.
* Ocean Basket – Part of a seafood franchise, good value. 75 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-0322.
* Café Sofia Meze & Tapas – Breakfast and Lunch, part of a franchise. 60 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 426-0801.
* Arnold’s on Kloof – Well known for (early) breakfasts, but also large lunch and dinner menu, cocktails, salads, burgers, pasta and sandwiches. 60 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 424-4344. Monday – Friday 6h45 – late. Saturday & Sunday 8h00 – late.
* Planet Green Salad Bar – 103 Kloof Street. Monday – Friday 10h00 – 18h00, Saturday 10h00 – 14h00.
* Myög – frozen yoghurt with wide range of toppings (photograph), 103 Kloof Street. Monday – Saturday 10h00 – 22h00, Sunday 12h00 – 22h00.
* Planet Restaurant at Mount Nelson Hotel – fine dining, on Top 20 Eat Out list. Tel (021) 483-1000. Monday – Saturday dinner.
* Van Hunk’s – South African cuisine, comfortable dining. Corner Kloof and Upper Union Str. Tel (021) 422-5422. Monday – Sunday 11h30 – 22h00.
* Royo Kloof Asian Restaurant – 115 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-1888. Monday – Sunday 11h00 – 15h00, 17h30 – 22h00.
* Tokyo Restaurant & Sushi Bar – 115 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 424-5108. Monday 17h00 – 22h00, Tuesday – Saturday 11h00 – 23h00, Sunday 12h00 – 23h00.
* Saigon – Vietnamese and some Japanese food. corner Kloof/Camp Str. Tel (021) 424-7676. Monday – Sunday 12h00 – 14h30, 18h00 – 22h30.
* Scooters – pizzas, mainly take-away and delivery. Corner Kloof and Union Str. Tel (021) 422-5995. Daily until 20h00.
* Asoka – light meals. 68 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-0909.
* The Slug & Lettuce – Bistro, English style pub, tapas, beers, wines by the glass. 64 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 422-5325. Monday – Sunday 11h00 – 2h00.
* DaVinci’s – pizzas. Corner Kloof/Camp Str. Tel (021) 424-7504. Daily 11h30 – 23h00.
* Saints on Kloof – burgers and beer! 84 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 424-0030. Monday – Sunday 9h00 – 23h00.
* Toni’s on Kloof Mocambique Portuguese Cuisine – 88 Kloof Str. tel (021) 423-7617. Daily 12h00 – 15h00, 18h00 until late.
* Shelley’s Gourmet Deli –Bistro, health and light meals served. 90 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 424-2740. Monday – Wednesday 8h00 – 16h00, Thursday – Saturday 8h00 – 22h00, Sunday 8h00 – 15h00.
* Melissa’s – Deli, part of a chain. Breakfast and lunch buffet, cakes, coffee. Monday – Sunday. Tel (021) 424-5540. Monday – Friday 7h00 – 19h00. Saturday 8h00 – 19h00. Sunday 8h00 – 18h00.
* Cocoa Oola Café and Pizzeria – Part of the Cocoa group, with other branches in Rondebosch Cocoa Wah-Wah), Observatory (Cocoa Chaa-Chi) and on Foreshore (Cocoa Expresso). Large menu, with pizzas, sandwiches, wraps, breakfast, tramezzinis, burgers, pasta, craft beers, and cocktails served in quirky spacious turquoise and lime green interior. Wireless internet. TV screens. Corner Kloof and De Lorentz Str. Tel (021) 422-3638. Monday – Saturday 7h00 – 23h00, Sunday 8h00 – 20h00.
* Tamboers Winkel – farm style kitchen in the city, rotisserie chicken forms foundation for many dishes, increasingly adding sweet treats (cupcakes, macaroons, etc). Also sell charcuterie, free range eggs, Manna Epicure breads, and other deli items (photograph). 3 De Lorentz Str. Tel (021) 424-0521. Tuesday – Friday 9h00 – 20h00, Saturday and Sunday 9h00 – 16h00.
* Jackal & Hide – ‘Continental cuisine’, bar. 108 Kloof Street. Tel (021) 424-1020. Monday – Saturday 15h00 – 24h00.
* Café Paradiso – Part of the Madame Zingara group, beautiful view onto Table Mountain, seating inside and outside, inexpensive comfort food. 110 Kloof Str. Monday – Saturday 8h00 – 22h00, Sunday 8h00 – 14h30. Tel (021) 423-8653
* Manna Epicure – Good breads, cakes and sweet treats, deli. Attractive white cottagey interior. 151 Kloof Str. Tel (021) Tuesday – Sunday 8h00 – 17h00.
* Caffe Milano – Milanese pastries, salads, few cooked foods, excellent breakfast (all day on weekends), fabulous Eggs Benedict. Giorgio Nava-owned. 153 Kloof Str. Tuesday – Sunday, 7h00 until 17h00. Tel (021) 426-5566 (photograph).
* Bombay Bicycle Club – wacky-looking inside and outside bohemian decor, also owned by Madame Zingara group. Comfort food, inexpensive. Kloof Str. Tel (021) 423-6805. Monday – Saturday
* Bacini’s Ristorante & Pizzeria – Italian style restaurant. 177 Kloof Str. Tel (021) 423-6668. Monday – Sunday 12h00 – 23h00.
* Liquorice & Lime – Coffee shop, Breakfasts and light meals. 162 Kloof Str. Tel (021) Monday – Friday 7h00 – 17h00, Saturday & Sunday, 7h00 – 17h00.
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage
Looking back: 2011 the worst year ever?
2011: what a year it’s been for the world, South Africa, and Whale Cottage – unpredictable, up and down, and a year in which one had to rethink every way in which one has run one’s business and life. Most would say that it’s been one of the worst years ever! But despite the tough times, there has been a lot to be grateful for as well. I have summarised some of the high and low lights of the year:
1. The knock which tourism took, especially from May – August, in being one of the worst winters ever experienced, had an effect on all sectors of the economy. Restaurants frantically offered specials to gain cashflow, guest houses went back to dropping rates as they do in winter, and few took rate increases in summer, unlike their hotel colleagues, who suffered poor occupancy too. More hotels and restaurants closed down than ever seen before. The recession in the UK hit South African tourism and wine sales badly, previously our major source market. From 50 % of our business in the summer months in Camps Bay, the UK business will be no more than 5 % this summer. High airfares and the crippling UK airport taxes have not helped. The tourism situation was so bad that we wrote an Open Letter to national Minister of Tourism Marthinus van Schalkwyk, as Cape Town Tourism and Cape Town Routes Unlimited were not aware of how bad things were in the Cape, and therefore did nothing to market the region and to help the tourism industry. Cape Town Tourism spent all its energy on Twitter, not yet the medium of communication of our average tourist, and on wasteful promotions, and therefore we did not renew our 20 year membership. The welcome increase in German tourists has not made up this shortfall, but we have been delighted to welcome many more South African guests. The World Cup has become a swearword, the reality of its lack of a tourism benefit becoming clear. A blessing from Santa has been a much improved festive season, with no snow-bound tourists or strong south-easter wind, as happened last year.
2. Events are hugely beneficial for business, and the Argus Cycle Tour, J&B Met, and Cape Town International Jazz Festival attracted out of town guests. The U2 and Coldplay concerts helped fill beds and delighted Cape Town audiences. A fantastic outcome of Coldplay’s performance is that the music video for ‘Paradise’ was filmed in our city, the Boland and the Karoo – no better part of the world could have been chosen for this song!
3. Cape Town has had an exceptional year, the darling of the world, winning the World Design Capital 2014 bid, Table Mountain being named one of New7Wonders of Nature (amid some controversy and as yet subject to verification), named top destination in TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Destination (for what it was worth!), and featuring strongly in the new James Bond book ‘Carte Blanche’. Our city hotels, especially the Cape Grace and Steenberg Hotel, featured on international top hotel lists. Good news was the sale of the V&A Waterfront to a local company, which is investing in the upgrade of and addition to the country’s most popular tourist destination.
4. Despite the doom and gloom, there were more restaurant openings, and chef and restaurant staff changes this year than in many years: The Pot Luck Club, Hemelhuijs, Dash, Casparus, Dear Me Foodworld, The Franschhoek Kitchen, Il Cappero, Café Benedict, The Kitchen at Maison, Sotano by Caveau, Knife, De Oude Bank Bakkerij, Ryan’s Kitchen, Caffe Milano, Mozzarella Bar, Cassis Salon de Thé, Power & the Glory, Haas Coffee, Johan’s @ Longridge, Skinny Legs & All, KOS Coffee & Cuisine, Café Dijon @ Zorgvliet, Le Coq, Act and Play Bar at the Baxter, Sunbird Bistro, Societi Brasserie, Jason’s, Bird Café with new owners, Maria’s after a long renovation closure, Toro Wine & Aperitif Bar, Valora, Café Le Chocolatier, Haute Cabriere Cellar Restaurant after a renovation and chef change, Art’s Café, Spice Route, Mitico, Knead on Kloof, Chez Chez, La Bella, 5 Rooms, Terbodore Coffee Bar, Wale Rose Lifestyle, The Black Pearl, Bistro on Rose, Slainte, Babel Tea House, Rhapsody’s, Café Extrablatt, Harvest, McDonalds in the V&A, The Mussel Bar, The Franschhoek Food Emporium, Makaron, F.east, Bean There Fair Trade, Sabrina’s, Harbour House in the V&A, MCC Franschhoek, Clarke Bar & Dining Room, Roberto’s, French Toast, Saboroso, Mezepoli, Rocca in the Cape Quarter, and Roca in Franschhoek opening their doors, and new suppliers Frankie Fenner Meat Merchants and The Creamery opening too.
5. Sadly, the recession was noticeable as it hit restaurants, and it was some of the newer restaurants that were badly hit, including What’s On Eatery, The Olive Shack, Bella Lucia, Blonde, Jardine, Caveau at the Mill, Nando’s in Camps Bay, The Sandbar, The Bistro, Restaurant Christophe, Doppio Zero in Green Point and Clarement, shu, Oiishi Delicious Caffe, Hermanos, The Kitchen Bar, Wildwoods, The Green Dolphin, De Huguenot restaurant, Wildflour, Depasco, Kuzina, and 221 Waterfront.
6. The eating highlight of the year was the tribute dinner to the closing of El Bulli, one of the world’s best restaurants, by Tokara, Chef Richard Carstens excelling in serving a 13-course meal to a packed restaurant on 30 July, earning him and his team a standing ovation. This meal alone should have made Chef Richard South Africa’s top chef in the Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant Awards, but sole judge Abigail Donnelly proved that she was incapable of handling this new role and responsibility, not only in excluding Chef Richard from her Top 10 list, but also in awarding the new Boschendal Style Award to her client Makaron.
7. Franschhoek evolved as THE wine region, Boekenhoutskloof being recognised as South Africa’s top winery by the Platter Guide, and La Motte the top wine estate in South Africa by the Great Wine Capitals Global Network. In the latter competition, Tokara was selected as top wine estate restaurant in the country. The sale of the Franschhoek Graham Beck farm was announced, and the operation closes mid-year in 2012. The winemaking will take place at Steenberg and at Graham Beck in Robertson, while a Graham Beck tasting bar Gorgeous will open at Steenberg in February.
8. Hermanus was in the tourism marketing spotlight, when miraculously both the committee of the Hermanus Tourism Bureau resigned, and the Cape Whale Coast Destination Marketing Organisation was disbanded by the Overstrand Mayor. We had written about the self-interest which had been served by the previous leaders of these two bodies in ‘Lermanus’! A welcome product for Hermanus is the recently created Hermanus Wine Route, marketing of which will be in the capable hands of Carolyn Martin of Creation.
9. The Consumer Protection Act was introduced in April, and has shown benefits in product deficiencies and returns. Little effect has been seen for the tourism industry. The Tourism Grading Council of South Africa tried to change its accommodation assessment standards, which caused a huge outcry. Despite changing back to what they had before, many accommodation establishments lost faith in the organisation, and have not renewed their accreditation.
10. The wedding of Prince Albert II and Princess Charlène in July put South Africa in the world spotlight, not only due to the televised broadcast of the wedding, but also as they celebrated their wedding with a second reception, at The Oyster Box in Umhlanga, now the country’s best known hotel.
11. This year proved that the ‘social’ in Social Media is a misnomer in many respects, but it is the marketing platform which cannot be excluded. We celebrated the 10th anniversary of our WhaleTales newsletter, the 3rd year of blogging, and our 1000 th blogpost this year. We are grateful to our Facebook friends and likers, Twitter followers, and blog and newsletter readers for their support.
It is hard to predict 2012, and we will go with the flow. 2011 has made us tougher and even more thick-skinned, we have learnt to change with changed tourism times. We look forward to a stable world economy, politics, as well as weather in 2012!
POSTSCRIPT 2/1: The most read posts on our blog in 2011 were the restaurant winter specials, the Festive Season packages, the marriage of Prince Albert and Princess Charléne, the review of Casparus, the restaurant summer specials, the review of Gaaitjie in Paternoster, the death in Cape Town of the President of Ferrero Rocher, the listing of restaurant openings and closures, the Consumer Protection Act, and Table Mountain making the New7Wonders of Nature.
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage