Tag Archives: The Test Kitchen

23 SA Restaurants make it onto the 50BEST Discovery restaurant and bar list, but does it really mean anything?

 

It is the season of Restaurant Awards and accolades, and the newest one is 50 BEST Discovery, launched just two weeks ago by the World’s 50 Best, a credible ranked list of the best restaurants in the world. In total, 27 South African establishments appear on this new list, of which 23 are restaurants, ten in Cape Town, and with some strange inclusions. I had to ask myself what this is all about, reading the motivation for and description of this newest accolade. Continue reading →

Eat Out blah-blah response to the withdrawal of two top restaurants from its Awards reflects panic!

 

It was a rough day for New Media Publishing on Tuesday, when The Test Kitchen announced that it is withdrawing from the Eat Out Awards, just two weeks after Restaurant Mosaic at the Orient had announced the same decision from the Eat Out stage, when Chef Chantel Dartnall collected her 9th-ranked Eat Out statue.   Both restaurants have sounded gracious in stating that their restaurants are stepping back, to allow younger chefs to get onto the Eat Out Top List. Continue reading →

Eat Out Awards 2019 full of drama and surprises, new awards, La Colombe overtakes The Test Kitchen for the first time as new number one restaurant in South Africa!

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 →

Eat Out Awards 2019: a prediction of the Top 10 Restaurants in South Africa!

Each year I attempt a prediction of the Eat Out Top 10 Restaurants in South Africa, from the restaurant guide’s Top 30 nomination short list. Each year it seems to get more difficult to predict which restaurants will make the top of the grade, the new Head Judge Margot Janse pulling many surprise punches in her Top 10 List last year, and even this year in her Top 30 nominations list. On Sunday 17 November the Restaurant industry ‘Oscars’ will be presented to the Top 10 South African Restaurants at GrandWest. Continue reading →

Food blogger in ‘Death Cup’ murder mystery by Irna van Zyl modelled on WhaleTales Blog!

Last week I found a reference to my name in a review written about author Irna van Zyl’s second book, called ‘Death Cup: Murder is on the menu’, a play on words with a mushroom by the same name, naming me as the model for one of the main characters in the book, as the writer of the ‘infamous food blog’. As I had been told this verbally on another occasion too, I had to go to Exclusive Books to buy a copy of the book. There is no mistaking the blog of the ‘food blogger’ as being my WhaleTales Blog! Continue reading →

TripAdvisor announces 2019 Top 10 Travellers’ Choice Awards ‘Best Fine Dining Restaurants’ in South Africa, La Colombe makes a meal of it!

It amuses me how much weight La Colombe places on the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards, clearly because it is the only awards ranking in which it comes first, and in which it beats its arch enemy The Test Kitchen, despite most serious restaurant diners knowing how questionable a TripAdvisor rating, and therefore this Award ranking, is! Continue reading →

Eat Out announces its 2019 Top 30 Restaurant shortlist! Shock exclusions! Liam Tomlin’s Chefs Warehouse & Canteen falls off the list!

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 →

JHP Gourmet Guide announces 2020 top restaurants, but does not release the list until January 2020! Read it here first!

The publishers of the Gourmet Guide 2020 have made it really difficult to write this post, in that it is not revealing its full list of 36 restaurants that received its one, two, or three plate awards on Monday, until January 2020, its website states. One can surmise that it wants the Gourmet Guide 2020 to be bought so that it can generate income. By January these Awards will have long been forgotten! Continue reading →

American Express announces Top 2020 Dining Award winners, with a Johannesburg bias!

It was a multi-Award day on Monday this week, with both American Express (for the Western and Southern Cape), as well as the Gourmet Guide (National) announcing their 2020 Restaurant Award winners. A week earlier American Express had announced its Gauteng, Free State, and KwaZulu-Natal Awards. There were many similarities in the winners, yet some strange winners in the American Express Dining  awards documented in this post. Continue reading →

Little-known hospitality consultancy Hospitality Counsel announces Top 10 Chefs and Restaurants 2019!

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 →