Eat Out has announced the names of its six ‘celebrated chefs’ cooking at its 2014 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards Gala Dinner on 16 November at new (for Eat Out) venue Thunder City. It has also revealed that five judges will select the Top 10 Restaurants for 2015.
In the past the chef selection for the Gala Dinner has been a sure predictor of Eat Out Top 10 restaurant selection, but when this became too obvious, Eat Out selected a mix of chefs who made the Top 10 Restaurant list, with some that did not. We have predicted the Eat Out Top 20 Restaurant shortlist for this year. The ‘decorated chefs’ cooking the dinner are:
* Neil Jewell of Bread & Wine (a weird Top 20 Restaurant finalist last year), which will definitely not make Top 10.
* David Higgs of five hundred (last year’s Chef of the Year and the restaurant came second on the Top 10 list), which will definitely make Top 10 – can Eat Out editor Abigail Donnelly let go of her ‘darling’ Luke Dale-Roberts, and give the top spot to Continue reading →
When Opulent Living‘s Barbara Lenhard and Florian Gast organise an event, you know it will be beyond perfect, the German precision being evident from the minute one enters the venue. Outperforming its ‘Chefs who Share – the ART of Giving‘ Gala Dinner and Auction of last year, which raised R1,2 million then, R 2,5 million was raised at ‘Chefs who Share‘ on Thursday evening from the 250 tickets sold at R3000 each for the Gala Dinner, and the smart auctioneering of art works and other auction lots.
Arriving at the not-often-used Darling Street entrance to the City Hall, the Mercedes-Benz (the company was a sponsor) CLS Coupé was outside the steps, and photographs taken of the VIPs attending. Halfway up the steps were the tables to register one’s attendance, with tall vases of beauty created with vegetables, all of which plus the vegetables used for the table decor going to a soup kitchen the following day. Outside the Hall itself, waiters greeted us with glasses of Graham Beck MCC, and one could admire the artwork hung in the passages, which was auctioned later in the evening. A continuous stream of canapés was offered, and the waiters linked to the creators of these served them, which helped in that they knew what they were serving. Little name cards, with the description of the dishes and the chef’s name, made the identification for Tweeting easy. Those served by Chefs Jackie Cameron, Rudi Liebenberg with Michelle Theron, Darren Badenhorst, Malika van Reenen, and Christiaan Campbell attracted particular attention. It was in the passage that we could chat and congratulate Barbara, who looked beautiful and glamorous in her Gavin Rajah dress. Continue reading →
* The Ultimate Braai Master Season 3 is being filmed, with the announcement that two changes are taking place: the series of 15 episodes will be broadcast on e.tv for the first time, from 11 September onwards, and a third judge, Chef Petrus Mudetlela returning to South Africa from London, has been added. Fifteen braai teams are vying for the prize package of R500000 in cash, a Renault Duster 4 x 4, two Big Green Eggs, and a holiday tour of India.
* The impact of the European High Court’s decision on Wednesday to allow private individuals living in Europe to have outdated and inaccurate personal data removed from Google searches on request is unclear, potentially leading to the ‘whitewashing’ of profile information.
* The USA has overtaken France as the country with the highest wine consumption, at 29 million hectolitre, closely followed by France, Italy, and Spain. Worldwide consumption declined by roughly 1% between 2012 and 2013, with consumption in the European countries and China declining too. By contrast, consumption in South Africa, Argentina, and Brazil increased in the past year. Despite the decline in volume, the value sold increased slightly to reach €26 billion, with 71% being still wine in bottles and 17% sparkling wine.
* Regarded by many as the best chef in the world, Ferran Adrià closed down his number 1 World’s 50 Best Restaurants elBulli in Continue reading →
A workshop held above Truth coffee shop about ten days ago, at which One Up Agency’s Alex Harrington-Griffin and Cape Town Magazine Managing Director Marcus Zandhuis spoke, focused on the concept of Partnership and Collaboration Marketing, and used Robertsons’ recent #SkyDine collaboration with kulula.com as one example of such marketing.
The Robertsons #SkyDine promotion is an interesting if not bizarre example of Partnership Marketing. Chatting to the brand’s Social Media Manager at The Ultimate Braai Master Cape finals on Saturday, he explained that Liquorice, the company he works for, only handled the Social Media aspects of the campaign. Durban-based ad agency The Hardy Boys, handling the Robertsons’ account, conceptualised the campaign. A planeful of bloggers and food journalists from Cape Town (and Johannesburg) was invited by marcusbrewster, the campaign PR agency, to a surprise flight to Johannesburg, and on the return flight to Cape Town, Reuben Robertsons Riffelintroduced the surprise 3-course meal which he had designed, and which was prepared by airline catering company Foodirections. Utilising plane crockery and an airline catering company, food plating and presentation was disappointing. We recognised Continue reading →
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 →
* La Motte is hosting a talk on ‘Shiraz and all its facets‘ with a tasting on Thursday at 18h30 – 20h45. (received via newsletter from La Motte)
*Justin Bonello is launching his new book ‘Roads Less Travelled‘ in conjunction with his The Ultimate Braai Master judges Bertus Basson and Marthinus Ferreira in November. Unsurprisingly the book sizzles with the stories and experiences of the TV reality show, and the journey on the backroads of our country in testing the best of our country’s braaiers.
It’s that time of the year again, and this week Eat Out will announce its shortlisted Top 20 Restaurants for the Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant Awards 2014. The judges have been furiously eating their way around the country, and top restaurants are licking their lips in the hope of cracking the Top 20 list, from which the Eat Out Top 10 Restaurants will be announced at the gala dinner in the V&A Waterfront on 10 November.
The Sweet Service Award goes to Four & Twenty Café, and its co-owner Marijke Duminy, for preparing a special portion of their home-made mayonnaise for me on Heritage Day. I am a huge fan of their home-made mustard and mayonnaise, but there was no mayonnaise in their product fridge, having always been available when I have stopped there in the past. Marijke made up a portion of the mayonnaise, despite it not being on her do list. Continue reading →
Season 2 of the popular Pick ‘n Pay ‘The Ultimate Braai Master’ will sizzle on TV screens on SABC3 this evening, just in time for National Braai Day on Tuesday. The new theme for the series is ‘The Roads Less Travelled‘, and would appear to be a travelogue about the beauty of our country and its wild life too. ‘The Ultimate Braai Master’ judges Bertus Basson from Overture and Marthinus Ferreira from DW Eleven-13 feature in Season 2 again.
In tonight’s episode the action kicks off at Hluhluwe Game Reserve, after the Braai Master teams survived gruelling auditions with 250 of the 4000 applicants around the country. The top fifteen teams travel to the Hilltop Resort in the Hluhluwe Nature Reserve, the first of 13 off-the-beaten-track locations. After a sumptuous welcome dinner prepared by the judges (and Eat Out Top 10 Restaurant chefs!) Bertus and Marthinus, the teams cross tongs in their bid to secure a place in the competition, with a prize Continue reading →