The Sweet Service Award goes to the Twelve Apostles Hotel in Camps Bay, for the fantastic service in allowing me to write in their Café Grill last Sunday when the fibre internet was not working in our section of Camps Bay. As I was writing about the Eat Out Awards event, and already had not been able to Instagram from GrandWest, as the WiFi was hopelessly overloaded and not working at all, it was a very long evening, finishing off writing at the hotel at 3h00, it being fortunate that the Continue reading →
On Monday I was hosted for lunch by the Twelve Apostles Hotel, invited to try its new Sushi Menu, which was launched at the beginning of this month. With Chef Sarawut Sukkowplong, previously with Nobu at the One & Only at the helm, I knew that it would be a good experience. Continue reading →
While I am very conscious of my weight, and focused on maintaining or even reducing it further, I have not become a Vegan or Vegetarian eater, although my eating pattern largely excludes meat and bread. It was therefore interesting to receive an invitation from the hotel’s Food & Beverage Manager Hilton Ruch, to try the new Vegan High Tea last Friday. Continue reading →
The Sweet Service Award goes to the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa and its Food & Beverage Manager Hilton Ruch, who assisted me in getting a table inside the Café Grill, when the staff had said that only outside tables were available. He also personally made two dry cappuccinos for me, and then offered to find a slice of chocolate cake, which offer I did not decline! When I requested the bill, the staff said that it had been taken care of! I have been impressed in the past with Hilton walking the hotel’s restaurant and bar floors, checking on all the facilities it offers. Continue reading →
Twelve Apostle’s Hotel PR consultancy Five Star PR invited a number of writers to try the new Winter Menu yesterday, on a sunny winter’s day, with Lion’s Head in the background. I was impressed with how the level of the cuisine at Azure restaurant has improved since my last visit. Continue reading →
* Exhibition space for Cape Wine 2015 is practically sold out, says Wines of South Africa (WOSA) CEO Siobhan Thompson. The largest wine expo in the southern hemisphere, it will be held from 15 – 17 September. A conference will run alongside the Expo, and speakers include Leeu Collection owner Analjit Singh, WOSA Chairman Michael Jordaan of Bartinney, and Western Cape Minister of Economic Opportunities Alan Winde. (received via media release from De Kock Communications)
* The Table Bay Hotel offers its guests special foraging tours in Cape Town, seeking wild sorrel, num nums, nasturtiums, and sweet peas on Table Mountain, as well as seaweed from the sea in Mouille Point, and dune spinach near the Radisson Blu hotel, ingredients which are transformed into a meal for the foraging guests at Camissa Brasserie. A foraging tour, cooking with the chef and a three-course meal with wine cots R5800 for four and R7000 Continue reading →
On Sunday the Sunday Times had a lengthy article, entitled ‘Food Soldiers’, about the blood, sweat, and tears that go into the preparation of ‘fine food’ and the running of good restaurants. The article concluded with a denigration of ‘frikkin’ bloggers‘ by newly renamed Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel Chef Rudi Liebenberg, quite out of character of someone who comes across as gentle and kind.
I Tweeted the last paragraph of the article, and posted it on Facebook, and an interesting discussion arose on the latter forum, threatening to become a ‘Chefs versus Bloggers’ fight. Veteran Chef Billy Gallagher fully supported Chef Rudi, writing ‘I believe you write good stuff Chris and I follow your blog which is always interesting to say the least, having spent 40 years in the hotel business. It was hotel chefs that laid the foundation. The South African chefs Association created the platform for today’s South African chefs and this 40 years ago was a hotel chefs initiative. Many of the top 10 restaurants are on wine estates which adds a wonderful backdrop to these very talented chefs. Let’s give Rudi his opinion right or wrong‘. Twelve Apostles Executive Director Horst Frehse also wrote in support of Chef Rudi. Susanna Tecklenburg of Oude Wellington wrote ‘I eat, sleep, sitting on the loo social media between cooking and running my restaurant. It sure brings in business and you meet new people all the time and guests appreciated when you comment on their posts. Read all the blogs and specially yours Chris Von Ulmenstein and value your opinion. Thanks for all your input and info all the time. With my busy lifestyle you ‘frikkin’ bloggers help us to be in touch what’s going on out there!’. Chef Anton Bekker of Taste Restaurant was critical of the effect of MasterChef SA on diners: ‘Social media keep my restaurant afloat! I do have problem when people watch masterchef and then think they know everything. Lol. Or when a food writer comments that the hollandaise needed some more cream. … haha’. Sarie Kos Food Editor Herman Lensing was the first to react to the Facebook post, stating that all diners have the right to express an opinion, and that chefs should cook for their customers and not for critics. Amanda Brinkmann was very vocal about the subject, saying that due to the politics in food writing, she believes in and supports ‘citizen journalism‘. Deon Schutte clearly wrote from a chef’s perspective: ‘I think that Continue reading →
* A new (yellow) frame for Table Mountain has been erected at Bloubergstrand, to showcase Cape Town’s icon for tourists and locals wishing to get a perfect picture, and to tie in with Cape Town hosting the World Design Capital 2014.
* In what many see as surprise news, Facebook will buy WhatsApp for $19 billion. WhatsApp has 450 million users, growing by 1 million a day. It is attractive to Facebook in reaching a younger audience and to improve its mobile communication reach.
* Constantia Fresh Fine Wine and Food Festival will be held this weekend. On Saturday 22/2 wines from Constantia can be tasted as can be canapés prepared by Chefs Brad Ball from Steenberg’s Bistro Sixteen82, Bertus Basson from Overture, Edgar Osojnik from Buitenverwachting, and Peter Tempelhoff from The McGrath Collection, all available at Buitenverwachting, from 15h00 – 20h00. The cost is R400 and tickets can be booked via Webtickets. Tomorrow a themed tasting will be held by Jörg Pfützner, from 18h00 – 19h30, at R990 per person. The Annual Constantia Fresh Dinner will be held tomorrow at Klein Constantia, and will be cooked by Chef Bertus Basson. Cost is R990.
* The Cape Winemakers Guild has put together an amazing auction lot for the AfrAsia Bank Cape Wine Auction, which will be held at Delaire Graff on 15 March. The lot includes Continue reading →
* Malaysian journalist David Bowden visited Cape Town late last year, when our mountains were snow capped, and he enthused about the city, documenting his journey as ‘Cape capers’. He was accommodated at the Twelve Apostles hotel, and was shown Hout Bay, Chapman’s Peak, Klein Constantia, Steenberg, Boulders’ Beach, and Bo-Kaap.
* Meryl Streep has waxed lyrical about her time in South Africa, both in Cape Town whilst shooting ‘The Giver‘ and on holiday with her family in an unnamed game reserve, in an interview on the Ellen Degeneres Show, which has 3 – 4 million viewers. A ‘highlight’ for her was being in South Africa when Nelson Mandela passed away, and experiencing the happiness and grief all in one.
* The MyCiTi Bus route expands to include Hout Bay (with Hangberg and Imizamo Continue reading →
* Cape Town will see the opening of a new chefs school in February, the Sense of Taste Culinary Arts Cooking School being set up by chefs Peter Ayub and Angie Boyd. They plan to become the leading cookery school in Africa in the next five years, and want to prepare their students for the hard-working, non-glamorous, non-MasterChef SA side of being a chef.
* SAA has increased its business class and economy class fares to the UK and Germany by between 2 – 10%.
* ‘Ordinary Love’, the U2 song for the movie ‘Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom‘ has received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Song, the only nomination for the movie. It won a Golden Globe for the same category earlier this week. The movie cost $35 million to produce, and is South Africa’s highest grossing movie at R20 million to date.
* Brenaissance has opened a new Wine Deck for wine tasting in its plum orchard Continue reading →