MasterChef SA is the talk of the country, and we have seven more gripping episodes to look forward to. To spice things up a little, we have launched two competitions, the first being a prediction of who will win MasterChef SA in episode 18.
We are also running a weekly lucky draw for the correct prediction of who our readers think will be booted out of the MasterChef SA every week. For the correct prediction of who will leave MasterChef SA in episode 12 (5 June), Burrata has generously offered a restaurant voucher to the value of R400 to the winner. Thys Hattingh, Jade de Waal, and Deena Naidoo are in the Pressure Test in this episode.
The opening of Burrata at the Old Biscuit Mill in March had been eagerly awaited, with its owner Neil Grant coming from 2011 Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant Rust en Vrede (he was the sommelier when he ran the restaurant with chef David Higgs). Burrata is not a pizzeria, and it’s not an Italian restaurant. It is a unique, friendly, and welcoming restaurant which, with its neighbours The Pot Luck Club and The Test Kitchen, makes the Old Biscuit Mill and Woodstock an exciting restaurant destination. The red pizza oven imported from Naples catches one’s eye immediately, unlike any seen locally, with a more modern design. The pizzaiolo pizza makers use peels imported from Italy to stretch the pizza, to create the correct shape and to place it in the oven, and to turn the pizza around once it is in the oven, to ensure that the pizza is equally cooked. Burrata backer Barry Engelbrecht is a pizza aficionado, and has attended pizza-making courses around the world, and he trained the staff in pizza-making.
The red pizza oven creates the decor foundation, and the use of red and black extends into the staff uniforms, Maxwell Williams salt and pepper grinders, material serviettes into which the Forum cutlery is rolled, the sugar bowls, and on the menu and winelist covers. Beautiful Italian Luigi Bormioli glasses made in Parma enhance the special wines served. A special state-of-the-art red hand meat slicer has a place of honour inside the restaurant. The kitchen is open plan, behind glass, and visible to diners. Charming front-of-house hostess is Swiss Isabella Immenkamp, who was a sommelier at Grande Roche previously. She is very attentive, and European in her service delivery. Chef Annemarie Steenkamp comes from Le Quartier Français, where she spent five years. The menu has a collection of delectable pizzas, as well as Chef Annemarie’s creations, including pork belly, roasted rib eye, a selection of pasta dishes, and risotto with caramelised onion. The service and personal attention is exceptional, the best experienced in a very long time. The wine list is comprehensive, reflecting Neil’s passion. Burrata is friendly and welcoming, with reasonable prices. As Chairman of the South African Sommeliers’ Association, Neil has prepared a 50 hour wine appreciation program for the MasterChef South Africa winner on behalf of Nederburg, for its parent company Distell.
Tweet your prediction of which of the 9 remaining finalists will be booted out of MasterChef SA to @WhaleCottage, or e-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Closing time for entries is Tuesday 5 June at 19h30, at the start of episode 12. The winner will be contacted immediately after the show ends. There will be a weekly Restaurant Voucher prize draw per episode for the correct prediction of who will be booted out of MasterChef SA, and voting for the following episode can start as soon as that day’s episode has been aired. Should there be no correct entry received, the prize is rolled over to go to another week.
POSTSCRIPT 5/6: Tonight’s prediction was not too difficult, given that the three Pressure Test finalists were already announced last week. Jade de Waal received the most votes for elimination this evening, and the voters were spot on in mirroring the judges’ decision to send Jade de Waal home. Congratulations to Anita Moser for winning the Burrata voucher.
POSTSCRIPT 19/6: We received this lovely e-mail from Anita Moser, winner of the Burrata voucher: ‘Dear Chris, A belated thanks for the voucher to eat at Burrata. My husband and I enjoyed a delicious meal there last Thursday evening. We were welcomed by Neil at the door. He was expecting us as I had sent him an e-mail earlier in the week requesting a booking and attaching the voucher. We have a mutual friend and it served as a good opening to our conversation. Neil came to explain the menu and offered his assistance in choosing our wine. Leon chose the bruschetta with prosciutto, rocket and grated walnuts while I had the fritto misto with pesto. My deep fried seafood and vegetables were delicious with a lovely dipping sauce and Leon enjoyed his bruschetta as well. Leon had a glass of Howard Booysen Riesling as suggested by Neil with his starter. It was a lovely wine which we normally not would have chosen. I had the deboned lamb neck paired with Cederburg Cabernet Sauvignon and Leon chose the slow cooked short rib with papardelle paired with a Sequilo Red blend which was an exceptionally nice wine. Once again my choice was the tastier option even though we still enjoyed Leon’s short rib very much. We yielded to temptation and shared the chocolate mousse and panna cotta dessert which did not disappoint. We finished off with 2 Americanos and had a lovely meal. Neil chatted to us throughout the meal. He was attentive, but never interfering. He emphasised that we must sit back and relax, which we did, but he unfortunately had to leave unexpectantly after our main course arrived due to a crisis (at home?). We will definitely be back and would like to try the pizza as well. Kind regards, Anita Moser’.
Burrata, Old Biscuit Mill, Albert Road, Woodstock, Cape Town. Tel (021) 447-6505. www.burrata.co.za Twitter: @BurrataSA Tuesday – Saturday, Lunch and Dinner.
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.comTwitter:@WhaleCottage