I was very excited to have dinner at La Tete a “nose to tail” eatery in the city centre. The establishment has been in operation since November last year and is the brainchild of the brothers Giles and James Edwards. Giles is a trained Chef, who trained and worked in the UK at various restaurants before making he’s way to the renowned St. John Restaurant to work with Fergus Henderson.
Now, I will start out by saying that this style of eating will definitely not appeal to everyone’s taste. However, I do believe it is something we should all be thinking about in an age where there is just so much wastage. The menu changes almost daily as there is an obvious dependency on produce availability.
The menu is comprehensive and I found it best to employ a modicum of “method to the madness” in order to give myself a fair chance at sampling, if not all, a fair share of the key dishes. So, armed with this theory in mind our table ordered a combination of the courses on the starter menu to sample.
First on the list was the chicken live pate on toast, a favourite of mine and a good way to get off the mark.
Next was the Kohlrabi salad which was just so crisp and refreshing, it’s the first time I’d had it but definitely not the last. It was one of the standout dishes.
Octopus fried in olive oil, drizzled with red wine vinegar, sea spinach and shaved fennel. This course was just so good, again the perfect balance between crispy, crunchy and fresh. It was a unanimous winner at our table.
Mussels gently steamed, taken out of the shell and then cooked with bacon and leeks. Bacon just makes everything taste better in my book.
Then it was over to the baked trotter, which is cooked then taken apart, removing all the meaty bits before being added to bacon and onions and finally topped with 2 lovely quails eggs.
And last but most certainly not least was the Crispy Pig Tails and Aioli. This dish received the most snickers and sneers, before it was finally eaten, truth be told it was tasty but very rich and fatty. In all fairness, we were forewarned by the chef and waiter. This is a dish definitely best shared.
The next course was the devilled chicken hearts, slightly spicy but divine nonetheless, served with chunky potato chips.
There was a fair amount of deliberation and conversation around our table after the first round of courses. It’s safe to say, that in general the courses and combinations were found “interesting.
We then moved on to the main courses and this was the Sole with mussels and a lovely Pernod sauce. Perfectly cooked.
This was followed by the cooked Ox tongue with chips and Aioli, now this isn’t how we generally serve ox tongue in my immediate circle so it was more of an adjustment around the texture of the course than anything else.
Then there was one of the groups favourites, Crispy Pig Cheek with Chicory and Apple tossed with mustard vinaigrette.
Finally to end the evening we had traditional French tea cakes called Madeleines, a perfect way to end the evening and a must have if you are going to visit.
In conclusion, I believe it’s important to be both adventurous and conscientious about what we eat. I believe Fergus Henderson was quoted as saying “If you’re going to kill the animal it only seems polite to use the whole thing.” I really did enjoy the food and I will definitely be back in future.
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17 Bree St,
Cape Town City Centre,
Tel:021 418 1299