Tag Archives: artworks

‘Chefs who Share’: Art on a plate and on auction too, all for a good cause!

Grande Provence Galaxy of Textures Whale CottageLast year I had the good fortune to attend ‘Chefs who Share’, organised by Barbara Lenhard and Florian Gast of Opulent Living and assisted by Belmond Mount Nelson Chef Rudi Liebenberg, a fantastic dinner held in the City Hall, which raised money for the MAD (Make a Difference) Charity and Laureus Sport for Good Foundation. All proceeds went to the charities, as the chefs, sommeliers, and suppliers all donated their time and produce without charge. This year ‘Chefs who Share’ goes one step bigger, with an international chef being added to each team of two local chefs.

The food served is outstanding, each set of tables being looked after by two top local chefs and the international chef, as well as a local sommelier.  Yesterday I was honoured with being the first to taste the dessert which Chef Darren Badenhorst from Grande Provence will serve at the decadent dinner on 11 September.  Chef Darren is partnering with Chef Franck Dangereux of The Food Barn (with Chef Anton Schmaus from Germany), and they spent a long four hours on Friday to plan the menu for their section of tables.  While Chef Darren has not revealed what the other dishes will be on the menu, Chef Darren made me his ‘Galaxy of Textures’, which meets the theme of chocolate for all desserts to be made for the dinner, coming in especially from his Continue reading →

Cape Town Art Fair Sweet and SA Vodka Festival Sour Service Awards!

Cape Town Art Fair Colourful painting 1 Whale Cottage PortfolioThe Sweet Service Award goes to the Cape Town Art Fair and its impressive inaugural mega multi-gallery art exhibition at The Lookout in the V&A Waterfront last weekend, with hundreds of artworks, about 40 galleries, and more than a hundred artists’ works on show.  The excellent food by four chefs, offered by Culinary Art by Opulent Living, the Graham Beck MCCs, and excellent organisation impressed.

SA Vodka Festival 1002958_653207881360110_1228639401_nThe Sour Service Award goes to the SA Vodka Festival, an inaugural vodka tasting festival which was organised by Monyetla Communications and Events, based in Johannesburg and ‘…a young vibrant and fast growing 100% black owned event management‘ company, says its Facebook page with 31 likes! The Festival was cancelled at short notice on Continue reading →

Haas Collective in Bo-Kaap refreshing, friendly and creative coffee and design destination

After reading about the Haas Coffee Collective on Twitter, and being impressed with how quickly it has created awareness in the two weeks that it has been open, I went to have a cappuccino yesterday.  It is a most interesting collective of coffee roastery and coffee shop (Haas Coffee Collective), as well as the Haas Design Collective, with the Haas Communication Collective ad agency upstairs, all trading under the Haas brand.  Each Haas business is to interconnect and benefit from the other.

The first wow was when the young black-hatted young man behind the counter welcomed me by name as I entered, being Kent Fourie, who was at school with my son, and moved from Ellerman House to start working at Haas.   He told me a little about Haas, and introduced me to Francois Irvine, an artist and interior designer, a partner in the Haas Collective.  Francois is in charge of the Haas Design Collective specifically.   Glynn Venter, previously a creative director at FCB Draft, is the other co-owner.   From the name, I imagined it to have a Dutch owner (perhaps thinking of chef Camil Haas of Franschhoek).   Glynn laughed when I asked him about the origin of the name, and he coyly told me that Haas is the name of his favourite soft toy bunny, which he acquired about four years ago at the Old Biscuit Mill, and which accompanies him everywhere he goes, wearing a seatbelt when driving with Glynn in the car, and having a personality all of his own.   A felt bunny is on top of an interesting wall-mounted corner unit containing the crockery that they had specially made for the coffee shop, with a fly or an ant printed on each saucer, which causes great amusement as customers try to get rid of the realistic looking insects!   I loved the bunny-shaped biscotti that was served with the cappuccino (R18).

The Haas Design Collective, with partner Vanessa Berlein, has been open for a year already, and is Francois’ collection of artworks by a variety of artists that he sells.   A few steps down is the new Haas Coffee Collective, which was created when the previous tenant vacated the space.  It has lovely weathered-looking beams, and the counter was especially designed by Francois and made from lovely wood, matching the wooden floor.   The coffee roasting machine from Germany stands in this space, as do two wooden tables and chairs.   One can sit outside at white tables and chairs too, or in the cutest nook off the Design Collective.

The 100 % arabica coffees that the Haas Coffee Collective sells and uses come from Robertson, from ‘Strictly Coffee’, owned by Rensche and Hanno Schwartz.  The company has been operating for about five years.   Rensche used to work at Distell, and was a client of Glynn’s when he worked at the ad agency.

For their opening PR function, the coffee varieties that are sold by the Haas Coffee Collective were paired with food.    For example, Java coffee was matched with brownies; coffee from Guatemala was served with canapes containing citrus.   The coffee that has caused a stir on Twitter is Kopi Luwak, which is specially ‘processed’ by the Indonesian Luwak civet, and comes at an extreme cost of R730 for 250g, and R80 per cup, making it the most expensive coffee in the world.   Next most expensive is the Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee, which costs R400 for 250g, or R60 per cup.  There are eight coffees in the Haas Coffee Collective, at around R 50 – R 60 per 250g, each with a very quirky name and a different origin, and each is described as if it were a wine:

*   Return of a War Hero is a Brazilian roast, with a kola nut scent and fruit flavours

*   The Three Sisters is a blend

*   The Famous Jailbird is an Ethiopian roast, “peach and plum are the dominant fruit notes, with hints of mango”

*   The Mysterious Gentleman is a roast from Guatemala, with floral notes, a hint of chocolate, caramel and fudge

*   The Boxing Club is a Colombian coffee, with “deep red wine tones and of nuts”

*   Monday Morning Lift Club is a blend

*   The Swimming Club is decaffeinated coffee

*   The Newly Weds is a Costa Rican roast, a “coffee’s coffee”, and is ‘smooth, rich and subtly fruity’.

After only being open for two weeks, the Haas Collective is expanding to a downstairs space across the road, which will serve as an art gallery for larger works of art.  Glynn and Francois are deciding what else to add, either a design studio, or a hot desk, which will allow business persons to use space as an office away from their office, with wifi, much like Café Neo in Mouille Point.

The Haas Communication Collective has only been open for  a few days, and has signed up its first clients already.  The upstairs space offers two rooms, one having a large lounge attached to it, which will be the meeting space with clients, and will allow them to experience the creative working space in which their ad agency will be creating their campaigns.  The Haas Communication Collective has been appointed to handle the communication of the Whisky Live Festival, and will incorporate the Haas Coffee Collective.    A coffee and brandy pairing event is planned too.  On 25 May an exciting new coffee-related project will be launched, involving “one of the world’s most well-known artists”, Glynn said.

One can have something to snack whilst at Haas, with a small selection of treats offered.  Smoked Gypsy ham on ciabatta costs R35, while ciabatta with cheese and vegetables costs R30.  Wonderful looking muffins and croissants are also for sale.   Iced coffee is available, but does not contain ice cream.  Haas has an iced coffee maker, and one of the interesting ingredients added to ice slush is condensed milk!

The Haas Collective is brimming with ideas, and will be a space to watch as it expands its very new empire.  Commendable is its Loyalty Card, with one free coffee for every nine bought.   The coffee is good too!

POSTSCRIPT 28/5: Haas Coffee has announced the launch of its new Tretchikoffie – such a clever idea!  It also matches the TretchiCushions on its furniture.

POSTSCRIPT 15/10:  Haas Collective has moved to 19 Buitenkant Street.

Haas Coffee Collective, Haas Design Collective and Haas Communication Collective,  67 Rose Street, Bo-Kaap, Cape Town.  Tel (021) 422-2239.   www.haascollective.com.   Twitter: @HaasCoffee  Monday – Friday 7h00 – 18h00, or until the last patrons have left,  and Saturday – Sunday 8h00 – early afternoon, or until the last patrons have left (how refreshing!).

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio:  www.whalecottage.com    Twitter: @WhaleCottage