A BREAK IN THE CAPE
To overcome Winter Blues in SA a little pampering is needed. The Cape is very much geared to summer sunshine, however if you know where to go then a gourmet comfortable visit can be world class …without the crowds.
We started with a few superlative days in the Cape with a suite [same cost as normal room] at Cape Royale. These guys know how to do superlative luxury whilst recognizing that a there is a recession. Personalities and smiles abound. They claim the best steak at the 1800 Grill and my partners was superb. Vegetarians are scarce in the Cape! So my gourmet weekend was heavily devoted to ‘Mushroom Risotto’!
We then travelled to Asara Wine Estate in Stellenbosch, to find a stunning boutique winelands style 5* hotel. Being quiet, the attention was all smiles and ready to meet our every whim. A stunning wine estate setting with early morning birdlife being the alarm clock. The weather meant we spent much cozt time by the fireplace with superb attention from …….
Our first choice was Delaire for dinner, however they are in midst of renovations. The Hotel recommended the restaurant at Jordan Wine Estate. An early disappointment with our seating plan was soon forgotten with the best starter of the decade a crispy duck with a delicious foam and delicate jus. The menu was just stunning and topped off with a soufflé which was the dessert of the decade. My Mushroom Risotto was made from scratch, as Vegies do not like wine, this delayed our main course which sadly meant my partners lamb was somewhat cold. However overall a Michelin Star performance, with a Cab Sav to delight.
Now we were on a gourmet roll! So we asked the Hotel late to book another restaurant and we headed off for Volkskombuis in Dorp Street. From the outside an interesting Afrikaans edifice. Quiet inside but it was 9.30 at this stage. Their signature dish for 35 years in their Chicken Pie. However my partners problem of choice was solved when the had a special that included the chicken pie, a baboetie and a curry lamb taster. The starters were a big let down. Libel concerns enter when we came to our main courses. My partners generous description of the ‘pies’ was that he misread the menu as they did say that they were 35 years old! My ‘Mushroom Risotto’ with white mushrooms was simply inedible.
Prior to a superb breakfast at Asara, it was time to take Rennies. So Saturday was characterized by Superb to Hopeless.
With uncomfortable tummies we set off for Sunday lunch at ‘Food and Wine’ at Moreson wine Estate. We were cheered being 45 minutes late to be greeted by Sunshine…a great name…, [stopped at DELI CAT EESSEN for a quick tea to settle tummies from night before]. Again starters were world class …but mains were ordinary.
There are so many options in the Winelands that you are spoiled for choice, however good homework and advice from the Concierges is necessary.