A few months ago, I happened to win a “romantic getaway” to Windfall Wine Farm in Robertson. Because of school and work obligations we had to postpone and thankfully Bianca has been very understanding and helpful.
Finally on the 16th of June, we packed our bags and off we went; direction Robertson. We decided to take the N2, a road less travelled. Also we wanted to see for ourselves what the dams looked like. In hindsight maybe not the greatest idea, as though the shorter route, we ended up on more gravel roads than we might have planned. Thankfully our trusted VW Tiguan stood up to the challenge and got us to our destination and back, gravel roads and all.
After a few hours on the road, we arrived at the Windfall Guest Cottages, the doors unlocked, lights left on, reminded us of a time gone by where people, didn’t feel the need to lock their doors. There are 5 self-catering cottages with everything one would need on your getaway. Even DSTV and the cellphone reception was no problem.
The cottages are fitted with a fully equipped kitchen, comfortable beds, private bathrooms and outdoor braai areas. There is a play area for kids which includes a jungle gym, as well as a swimming pool and a dam. The Boma which includes a braai facility is perfect for a large group braai. The views of the valley are probably best seen from the Boma, just majestic rolling hills and mountains as far as the eye can see.
We unpacked our car and then headed to Town to do a little exploring. Once done, we headed back and started on dinner. Meanwhile we made a friend, Oom Jacko’s dog Cody. From afar he looks like a lioness quite scary but up close he is too cute and supper friendly. As I wasn’t feeling good we ended up calling it an early night.
Next morning we had our wine tasting at the Main house, about 1km from the guest cottages. We were met by Annette, her boys and her trusty companion Avian(hope I spelt it correctly).
We started with the:
Has strawberry and pomegranate notes on the palate with sweet-melon nuances that linger into a long finish. (from the website)
Surprises with honey, yellow peach and citrus on the nose. Hints of an earthiness infused with yellow fruit embody this wine which follows through into a creamy smooth finish. (from the website)
Boasts flinty and mineral characteristics on the front palate with a crisp lingering finish of tropical notes. (from the website)
Is a medium bodied wine which has floral notes
with hints of Fynbos on the nose which follows through onto the palate. (from the website)
Is a medium bodied wine which boasts white pepper, red berries, baked fruit, and red plums. With a beautifully balanced and full finish. (from the website)
Another vintage performance by the Randgold team has delivered the Kibali gold mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo on time and against expectations.
To mark the event, Rob Alexander and the folks at the Windfall boutique winery have made this bold blend of Cabernet Sauvignon / Tinta Amarella / Shiraz – a truly unique wine for a unique occasion.
A single bottle of this bold red was created to celebrate the commissioning of the Kibali gold mine in the DRC on budget and ahead of schedule; a feat few thought was possible. The mine was developed and is being operated by Randgold.
The proceeds from the sale of that bottle, which fetched R22 000, went to the Nos Vies en Partage Foundation, a charity fund established by Randgold to advance social upliftment projects in sub-Saharan Africa.
A significant portion of the proceeds of all sales of the new wine will also go to the Nos Vies en Partage Foundation. To mark the event, Rob Alexander and the folks at the Windfall boutique winery have made this bold blend of Shiraz, Mourvèdre, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Grenache – a truly unique wine for a unique occasion. (from the website)
Is handpicked from selected Chenin Blanc which grows on the cool Western facing mountain slopes in the Retreat valley – west of Robertson. Only first-run juice was used and slowly fermented to produce a base wine with nuances of green apple, citrus and green pea undertones. (from the website)
By far my favourite was the Kabali and surprisingly The Hunter, best pot stilled brandy I have sampled thus far.
Annette, urged us to visit the Boma before we leave and certainly we weren’t disappointed. We could see ourselves on a lazy Summer’s afternoon with our friends and family enjoying a braai and waiting for the Sun to set or even getting up before the crack of dawn and waiting for the Sun to raise over the distant hills.
Sadly we had to cut our stay short and left shortly after the tasting and our visit to the Boma, but be assured we going back with friends and family as this is really a gem of a destination and the wines are superb to boot.
We’ve reached the halfway mark in the Chef & the Vine Series presented by Chef Reuben Riffel’s restaurant Reuben’s at the One & Only Hotel Cape Town.
Monthly Reuben’s Head Chef pairs with a different wine farm to present an elegant evening of culinary delights and the wine farm best. It a chance for the Restaurant to go ‘off book’ and serves something a little more experimental and often these dishes makes it onto the Reuben’s Main menu.
The latter part of the year sees the following wine farm presenting their wines and if you’ve not yet attended one, do yourself a favour and book your seat.
The Nederburg Cuvee Brut was the perfect drink to start off the evening, accompanied by various canapé’s. Certainly the perfect catalyst for a conversation starter.
After all, meeting new people, enjoying good food and wine is what these events are all about.
The eclectic artwork, Persian rugs, antique furniture, coupled with an industrial feel in its décor creates a warm sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere. The eye-catching long bar, displaying various coffees and wines is visually pleasing. Such great attention to detail.
We were treated to a 3 course tapas menu accompanied by Nederburg’ s signature Winemasters Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.
Bruschetta with a selection of toppings
NEDERBURG Cuvee Brut
For your perfect personal pairing with Starters & Main Courses
NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS CHARDONNAY
NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS CABERNET SAUVIGNON
NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS SHIRAZ
Selection of homemade breads
Soup – Sweetcorn & Ginger Soup
Fish – Marlin Skewers with Asian Sauce
Tzatziki – Cauliflower & Beetroot Tzatziki
Chicken – Seared BBQ Chicken
Pork – Pulled pork with Pomegranate and Coleslaw
Veg – Veggie Skewers
Mushroom – Parmesan Mushrooms
Polenta – Polenta fingers with slow cooked Tomato and Onion sauce
Trio of dark chocolate and Sweet Potato Truffles
NEDERBURG THE WINEMASTERS Noble Late Harvest
This was not going to be your usual food and wine pairing. Each guest received a “Perfect Pairing” docket which we were able to use to pair our favourite food, wine, fabric, scent and ceramic! Pairing in this manner, encapsulates all the senses.
First Course was Sweetcorn and Ginger Soup, Marlin Skewers with Asian Sauce and Cauliflower and Beetroot Tzatziki. The sweet corn and ginger soup was by far my favourite part of this course, Aromatic, Velvety and seasoned perfectly, it’s absolutely beautiful!
Second Course was Seared Barbeque Chicken, Pulled Pork with Pomegranate and Coleslaw, Veggie Skewers, Parmesan Mushrooms, Polenta Fingers and Slow Cooked Tomato and Onion Sauce. The winner for me has got to be the pulled pork. Soft, juicy and tender! What makes this dish stand out is just how interesting and flavoursome it is.
Dessert came in two servings; first a zesty Lime Tartlet followed by a Trio of decadent dark chocolate and sweet potato truffles. Both paired with the Wine masters Noble Late Harvest. A guilty pleasure that leaves your taste buds wanting more.
All beautifully prepared Dishes. It’s clear that Haas has a taste for the exceptional and their passion shows in their food.
A few weeks ago, with scarves, parkas and umbrellas in hand we braved the winter chill and headed to Dash Restaurant at the sophisticated Queen Victoria Hotel in the V&A Waterfront. Dash Restaurant and Bar named after Queen Victoria’s favourite pet, Dash, the Cavalier King Charles spaniel, certainly didn’t disappoint.
The door man, with his friendly demeanour, he led us to Dash where we were welcomed by our lovely waitress. We were offered the choice of enjoying a drink at the bar, with its cosy fireplace before dinner or going straight to our table. We opted for the table, as after all we were there to experience the 4 course Winter Menu.
We each received a complimentary glass of Champagne and they even included a non-alcoholic drink for our daughter, very thoughtful and appreciated. The restaurant is decorated with truly opulent and though provoking art work and I especially loved the artwork opposite me. Throughout the evening I found myself constantly being drawn to it. Truly remarkable!
We ordered a bottle of wine and waiting in anticipation for the culinary journey to begin.
Milk tart Panna Cotta, Koeksister crumble, Malva cake, Brandy ice-cream
Our journey begun with a an amuse bouche a scrumptious salmon bite-sized hors d’œuvre.
Having had Pumpkin Soup the previous night, we were quite intrigued to see what this one would be like compared to the last and I am glad to say, it was as good if not better. The Sesame Crusted Bacon Toast was a welcomed surprise.
The portion sizes are generous to say the least. Every dish was tasty and pack with flavour. Our daughter being Pescaterian, wasn’t a challenge for the chef, they gladly accommodated her. I have to say without a doubt my favourite dish was THE OCEAN, it has me reminiscing about my younger years camping at the seaside. Every memory was brought back to me in this one hearty dish. This dish was our daughter favourite too.
Somewhat of a Pork Belly “expert”, my husband loved this dish; all the flavours were perfectly balanced.
And for the non-meat eater delicious piece of Salmon.
Lastly the dessert and new and interesting take on all the South African favourites, a bit of a remix and the guys at Dash pulled it off brilliantly. We wouldn’t be happy with a little morsel of every favourite dessert you have ever had in one bowl, it’s definitely designed to bring out the kid in all of us.
All in all a lovely evening spent and one of Cape Town’s best. We cannot wait to go back and try out the rest of their amazing dishes soon.
Our regular subscribers might have noticed we have had a few more contributors in the last few months, doing the writing. The pics are all still JAR Photography, courtesy of Jason, in an attempt to keep the perspective fresh and new, you’ll see a lot of more names added to the list.
Having attended a few Food and Wine pairings, we have to be honest and say the Stacey and the team at Tobago’s have done things with a welcomed twist and it worked! The Chef and his team sends the Wine Farm as few dishes and the Warm Farm then decides which of their wines would best suit the dishes available to them.
As a team we actually can’t wait to see what the next few months of the Saturday Supper Club will bring.
Yes, I can be a blogger – Seresha Appel
Tobago’s restaurant perfectly positioned on the Capes Atlantic seaboard at the world-renowned Radisson Blu Hotel few kilometres away from the V&A Waterfront. Perfect setting for a sundowner overlooking the ocean 🙂
The restaurant setting is one of relaxed dining. We had pleasure of being privy to the first Saturday Supper Club that was hosted by Chef Norman and team in conjunction with Remhoogte Wines, a small family owned farm in Stellenbosch.
Butternut Soup & Avo and Salmon Pancakes Remhoogte 2015 First Light Chenin Blanc 2016
Rich Steak and Guinness Stew Remhoogte 2014 Aspect Merlot
Dark Chocolate and Banana Brownie with Bacon Ice-Cream Remhoogte Estate 2013 Blend
On arrival we were warmly welcomed and ushered to unwind in the bar area on the patio where we were served with canapes namely a creamy delicious butternut soup and a salmon and avo yogurt coupled with a smooth Remhoogte First Light Chenin Blanc 2016.
Starters were a braised Oxtail Soup served with a petit Yorkshire pudding and chive Crème Fraiche with a side of freshly baked bread. Perfect soup to keep you warm and fuzzy on a winter’s evening….personally I would have enjoyed a larger piece of Yorkshire pudding ;-). This was beautifully paired with a Remhoogte 2015 Vantage pinotage which enhanced the deep flavours of the soup.
Onto the Main course which was a delightful bowl of very tender Rich steak in a Guinness Stew served with a creamy yummy mustard mash and root vegetables paired with a very smooth Remhoogte 2014 Aspect Merlot which was definitely a firm favourite wine of the night.
After two rich and hearty courses and bursting at the seams, one always however makes space for the favourite course of any night…the Desert, a dark chocolate and Banana brownie with a side of bacon ice-cream paired with the Remhoogte 2014 Chronicle Cape Blend …this dessert was of particular interest due to bacon being incorporated in the ice cream…being a bacon lover I eagerly awaited the arrival however I was slightly disappointed, personally my taste buds weren’t acquired to having a savoury meat added to my sweet ice-cream…never-the-less the dark chocolate and Banana brownie served with the dried banana and beautifully decorated with praline coated Pecan nuts rounded off a delicious desert and overall wonderful evening.
The unusual twist of having the chef prepare the meals and then have an appropriate wine paired to enhance the flavours of the dishes works wonders.
Thank you to the chef and the team of Remhoogte Wines for the experience of the Saturday Supper Club and not forgetting arming us with copies of the recipes so we can cook up a storm in our own kitchens of our favourite dishes.
A week ago, we had a bit of a revelation, lets turn this blogging business on its head… I mean seriously guys, we regular people with day jobs and blogging can be hard work. So we thought we’d start giving you guys our reader a chance to wear the “bloggers boots” for a day.
Dawn Woodrup,subscriber since 2016 was the lucky lady,chosen via Random.org. and it was her birthday to boot. Destiny for sure. Dawn and hubby Wayne joined us for our monthly instalment of the Chef & the Vine at Reubens Restaurant at the One & Only.
Below is Dawn first blog post, from JAR Photography, we cannot say THANK YOU enough 🙂
JAR Photography #jarphotoct JAR Photography #ChefandtheVine Reubens@ The One and Only Hotel ‘Yes, I can be a blogger’
On The 30th May, I had the amazing chance to experience a Chef & the Vine Series, featuring Reubens & Holden Manz at One&Only Hotel in Cape Town, With Rene And Jason from JAR Photography and Wayne Woodrup On arrival, we were met by Terrence from the Vista Bar & Lounge with a welcome glass of Holden Manz Rose 2016, and served a delicious selection of Fresh Oysters with Champagne caviar.
We were then escorted to Reuben’s Restaurant with a Happy Birthday glass of Bubbly and a Birthday wish from the Restaurant Manager, Thabo.
First Course Consisted of a Foie Grass Parfait, that was silky smooth and delicious. Served with an Apricot and Chamomile Granola and accompanied by a Holden Manz Chardonnay 2016.
1st Course Foie Grass Parfait with Apricot and Chamomile Granola Holden Manz Wine Estate Chardonnay 2016
Second Course was Moroccan Cured Chalmar Sirloin, Chocolate Soil, Mushroom Biltong with Blackened Baby Onion and Cashew Truffle creme,served with a Holden Manz Visionaire 2013.
Third Course felt like stepping into Heston Blumenthal Kitchen with a Holden Manz Big G Gluhwein Sphere, beautifully presented.
Fourth Course was a divine Sous Vide Impala Loin with Aubergine Puree, Popped Peas, Beets, Sun Blushed Tomato and a Dark Berry Jus, and to round off a stunning course, served with a Holden Manz Cabernet Franc 2014.
And lastly my favorite course of any meal…. Dessert, a delicious Cream Cheese Parfait, Carrot Cake Crumb and Almond Sugar accompanied by a Holdan Manz Syrah. Each Course was perfectly paired with a wine that captured the essence of the meal.
The highlight of the evening, besides spending an evening tasting amazing food, sharing it with great company and enjoying a fantastic birthday, was meeting Reuben Riffel. Such an amazing person. Thank you for the picture and a glimpse of your stunning kitchen.
Lastly to Jason and Rene, many thanks for the evening, it was a magical night. Thank you again Dawn