As a group of doctors working at Helderberg Hospital, the saying “We work hard and we play even harder”, is very appt. When I started searching for venues to host our Year-End function, one place came to mind that would embody luxury, sensational cuisine, breath-taking architecture and views, as well as amazing service: Waterkloof; the complete antitheses of what doctors, who work within the government sector, are used to.
When I approached Micky, Restaurant Manager of Waterkloof, regarding our Year-End function, he never hesitated for one second. I couldn’t believe our luck! One of my favourite wine farms was going to host our Year-End function! I must have had the staff at Waterkloof going insane with all my e-mails, but they were very professional in their correspondence and always on time.
The whole hospital was a buzz of excitement a week preceding the function. Doctors who were “still thinking about it”, RSVP’ed as soon as they heard about Waterkloof’s reputation. Of course, our initial estimate of guests went from 60 to 74 with a few days to spare. Waterkloof never hesitated and adopted an attitude of “The more, The Merrier”. Of course, the doctors decided that they needed to dance – a week before the function... I called Micky in a panic thinking I’ll have to work hard to sell this new addition to the evening’s agenda. Micky, once again, surprised me by saying it won’t be a problem and that there is a lot of space for the doctors to “get their groove on”.
On the day of the function, as I drove op the winding road leading to the magnificent structure that is the Waterkloof cellar, I didn’t know what to expect; I knew it would be perfection, professionalism and artistic wonder, but as I walked through the glass-sliding doors into the main dining area, I was in awe. Every person was greeted with a glass of Rose. The staff, being super professional, always at their posts and ready to attend to the guests; one never saw them, but one knew of their presence.
The food... Where do I start with the food?! May I be so blunt as to start off by saying it was AMAZING (what a cliché, but I can’t go about it any other way). We had superb canapé’s that just “kept on coming”. Just as we thought we couldn’t possibly top the canapé’s, we were treated to a glorious main meal – doctors at the Helderberg complex are still talking about the succulent beef fillet prepared to perfection, artfully accompanied by pumpkin pure and apple and beautifully pared with their own Elevation “393” 2001 wine. This was followed by a pallet cleanser which prepared us for the decadent desert of Jivara and Peppermint. It was a sensation for the taste buds! Artfully crafted sweets were served following the desert that gave one the impression that the culinary experience just wouldn’t stop, not if Watrekloof had any say in it. The chef and his team were something to behold in the kitchen, but their product spoke louder than words - an amazing team with loads of passion, artful talent and skill.
As the night draw to a close, one had the sense that something amazing just happened. We had a function that would go down in Helderberg Hospital’s history books as one of the most amazing culinary experiences many of us have had. The hospitality that Waterkloof showed us was unprecedented. The professionalism of the Micky and his staff speaks of a well-oiled machine.
With this, I would like to thank Waterkloof, Micky and his staff, as well as the chef and his team for a night we doctors at Helderberg Hospital will never forget. We will all definitely frequent the restaurant not just to indulge in the chef’s new creative insight, but also to experience Waterkloof wines and hospitality.
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