The Pot Luck Club Jan ’18 – Mario Arendse

Luke Dale-Roberts it seems is literally the goose that lays the proverbial golden egg. With everything he seems to touch, turning to gold. He’s award-winning restaurants; I believe have set the benchmark for quality dining in Cape Town.

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I was lucky enough to grab a late lunch at one of the establishments, The Pot Luck Club on what turned out to be a stunning Saturday afternoon. Be warned the Biscuit Mill area and surrounds were positively chaotic with what seemed like hundreds of locals and foreigners mulling around the craft stalls and eateries. Parking can be a challenge, so come early and come prepared.

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The Pot Luck Club venue itself feels quite industrial, with its exposed brick and steel but done in a tasteful fashion. The views and backdrop from the venue is jaw dropping, offering diners a unique 360 degree of the city.

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The dining experience is unique and diners are encouraged to immerse themselves in the tapas style experience. The menu was quite extensive but we gladly accepted the challenge.

 

Salty:

I’m a sucker for good bread and theirs was delicious, accompanied with dips

Yoghurt marinated chicken, cucumber raita, cashew and tomato curry

Chickpea, goat’s cheese and parmesan fries with aioli and tomato ketchup. This course was amazing; it was so good we ordered refills. You will never look at chickpeas the same way

Seafood tagine, saffron rouille, cauliflower and almond cous cous.

 

Sweet:

Springbok tataki, beetroot relish, ash baked beets and goats cheese croquettes.

Beef tataki, hoisin dressing, coriander pesto and ponzu mayo.

Liquorice glazed sweetbreads, pancetta, tahini and lemon cream and pine nut granola

 

Umami:

The Pot Luck Club Fish sliders are an absolute “must have” they were sublime, and we were only too glad to get seconds too!

Next was the Tuna bordelaise with chimichurri and smoked bone marrow

Finally, the smoked beef fillet with black pepper and truffle café au lait

 

Sour:

Then there was the delicious fish tacos ceviche, black bean puree, avocado and sour cream.9999

Peri Peri Prawns, lemon butter and a prawn cracker.

Sesame crusted salmon, doenjang mayo and pickled cucumber

 

There was just soooo much good food we chose to give desserts a miss. All the courses were truly on point and impossible to criticise. The Pot Luck Club must be on your “must do list”

For the full album click HERE

Restaurant Info:

The Pot Luck Club

The Silo,

The Old Biscuit Mill,

373-375 Albert Rd,

Woodstock,

Cape Town

MENU

Tel No: 021 447 0804

Email: reservations@thepotluckclub.co.za

Telephonic reservations are taken between 08:00 – 17:00 Monday to Friday and Saturday between 09:00 – 17:00

Bookings open on the 1st of each month at 08:30am South African time for the following month.

For Private function queries kindly send an email to reservations@thepotluckclub.co.za

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by  Mario Arendse

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

Eatsplorer with Chef Lapo – Lynelle Moodley

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Eatsplorer sets the expectation of combing 2 amazing things: eating and exploring. This definitely satisfied the expectation on the delivery of Chef Lapo’s partnership with Eatsplorer.

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Dining in the beautiful Granger Bay area, we were able to enjoy authentic Italian food showcasing the fresh and organic ingredients of the Oranjazicht Farmers Market.

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It’s really not the same in a restaurant, granted any type of mainstream ethnic restaurant will serve customers “authentic” food of their designation. Eating fresh food prepared by Chef Lapo in front of your eyes has the appeal of a home cooked meal.

 

IMG_3607To start was a gazpacho with cream cheese, deep fried zucchini flower. The dish was an explosion of flavour because the unexpected pairing worked very well together. Chef Lapo made use of the Bulgarian tomatoes sold at the Farmers Market and they added a different dimension of flavour to the dish – the tomatoes weren’t sour or overly saturated with water as regular jam tomatoes.

IMG_3636Next was a true Italian classic: mushroom risotto. This risotto surpassed any that I had previously eaten (even in reputable Italian restaurants) because of the innate richness of the dish. Although I couldn’t eat half the meal because of the richness, the flavours were like a disco party on my tongue. The olive oil and the course sea salt attempted to balance out some of the butter in the risotto, it was definitely an Italian risotto in the true sense.

IMG_3641The main consisted of slow-cooked Karoo lamb with baked potato and green beans, from the market. The lamb was absolutely tender and cooked to perfection and taste and juices really soaked. My only complaint is that there wasn’t more of the meal!

 

IMG_3673Dessert was presented to us in the form of a slice of pie with ice cream. The berries and coffee balanced each other out well and the ice cream was the perfect compliment.

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This dessert wasn’t anything fancy; it is what you would expect after lunch with your family at your mom or gran’s house. That was the epitome of the lunch: a family meal. It carried the atmosphere of a relaxed Sunday enjoying a meal with your family. The informal setting of the Farmers Market really contributed to this and Eatsplorer did not disappoint in giving us a glimpse of a true taste of home.

For the full album click HERE

 Lapo’s Kitchen

 18 Bellevliet Rd,

Observatory,

Cape Town,

7925

Tel No: 082 332 1366

 Eatsplorer Cape Town

Oranjezicht City Farm Market

Market Day

Granger Bay,

V&A Waterfront. (next to The Lookout event venue).

Market Day is every Saturday from 08h30 – 14h00.

Tel No: Kurt (Farm) 083 508 1066 and Sheryl (Market) 083 628 3426

Email: cityfarm@ozcf.co.za (Farm) or market@ozcf.co.za (Market)

 Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Lynelle Moodley

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

 

 

Constantia Glen Mar 18 – Mario Arendse

Why is it that we always seem to forget that there are really good vineyards and wine and food on our doorsteps? We are spoilt for choice I guess, in the Southern suburbs and we can literally on a whim find ourselves on the Stellenbosch Wine Route or Constantia Wine Route for that matter in just minutes.

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I had been to Eagles Nest last year and loved the food atmosphere and vibe. We chose to go to the adjoining farm Constantia Glen, we were a few minutes early and had to wait for our table, geeze the place was packed to the rafters with locals and foreigners alike. Our plan was enjoy something light to nibble and to enjoy a glass or two.

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Now before I get stuck into the detail, I have to add that this was the most “confusing” wine tasting menu I had ever encountered. If you took one option, chances were that the same wines were also in a different option, so you either have to miss out or duplicate options.  Also I would package the menu a little different, I would have paired the wines with the platters and have platter for 2 and 4 etc., that’s just my opinion.

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Our waiter seemed a little pre-occupied and I don’t blame him as he seemed to have a massive section to service, I do however take exception to indifferent service. It seemed hurried and unattentive as there were a few times we had to follow up on dishes and wait for tableware.

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We opted for the Cheese and Charcuterie platter to start with, which consisted of Stone house brie, Cremalat gorgonzola, Swissland  Tomini goats cheese, Anura Mountain cheese served with a freshly baked baguette & rose grape jelly along with Prosciutto, Coppa, Salami Felino and capers, gherkins, smoked rooibos butter. I found the portion size average for two people.

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Next was the Trout, Oaked smoked ribbons, dill and lemon, crème fraiche, cucumber pickle and freshly baked baguette.

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Finally we had the South African platter for 2 with bobotie, biltong, droe wors, samosas, snoek pate pot bread, peppadews and potato salad.

For the wine tasting we opted for the;

  • Constantia Glen Flagship Tasting2017 Constantia Glen Sauvignon Blanc
    • 2017 Constantia Glen TWO
    • 2014 Constantia Glen THREE
    • 2013 Constantia Glen FIVE
  • Constantia Saddle and MCC Tasting2017 Constantia Saddle White
    • 2017 Constantia saddle Rose
    • 2016 Constantia Saddle Red
    • Rosemarie and Funa MCC Brut Rose

There were another two wines we tried, which I think was the 2017 Van Wyk Rebecca May and the 2016 Van Wyk Syrah, it was all just too confusing for me and I gave up trying to understand the permutations. Sadly we never got a chance to photograph the bottles as there were other patrons waiting to taste as well.

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A beautiful setting with some really nice wine but a poor experience I’m afraid. For me, dining out is not just about the food but also about the entire experience, or we would all eat at home.

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For the full album click HERE

Farm & Restaurant Info:

Constantia Glen

Constantia Main Rd,

Constantia,

Cape Town

 Tel No: +27(0)21 795 5639

Email: reservations@constantiaglen.com.

 Opening Hours: Sunday – Thursday from 10am to 6pm

                            Friday –Saturday from 10am to 8pm

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Mario Arendse

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

Thali Cape Town Jan ’18 – by Lynelle Moodley

Thali is many things, but to the Indian people, it is a meal to be shared and enjoyed in almost every home. Thali is a way of life. The dish usually consists of various small portions of Indian foods served in a round, metal platter with rice, roti or naan as condiments. The goal is to have something to cater to all taste buds; sweet, sour, bitter, spicy etc. on one plate.

Thali-courtyard

It was difficult to imagine a restaurant capturing the atmosphere and feeling of South Indian and bringing the flavour of real Thali to Cape Town. I’m glad to say I was not disappointed. The smell Sandalwood incense greets you as soon as you walk into the restaurant, with the cool blue and gold decor making you feel as if you stepped into a Calcutta courtyard.

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The seating arrangement provided a view of all the dishes being plated and I was pleased to see pots, pans and platters that were indicative of the Indian culture – almost like I was eating in a village with the locals.

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Menu

Thali for 2

Potato & Sweetcorn Chaat, Charred Poppadum

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Smoked Tadka Dhal,Paratha

Tandoori Cauliflower, Cumin Cauliflower Pureé, Cashew & Coconut Salad

Tandoori Chicken Skewers, Tomato Chilli Jam, Cucumber Coriander Raita

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Fried Fish Tacos

Line Fish, Roast Peanut Pureé, Coconut & Lime Dressing

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Smoked Lamb CurryIMG_2534

Panch Phoran Seafood Curry

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Vegetarian

Thali for 2

Potato & Sweetcorn Chaat, Charred Poppadum

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Smoked Tadka Dhal, Paratha

Tandoori Cauliflower,Cumin Cauliflower Pureé,Cashew & Coconut Salad

Chana Masala

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Vegetable Kofta, Pickled Carrots

Spiced Tomato Tartlet

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Panch Phoran Vegetable Curry

Paneer Mushroom, Spiced Spinach

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We dined on “Thali for 2”, a selection of 4 tapas dishes to share with one of the sets of tapas in the vegetarian option. The first consisted of a charred poppadum in the shape of a bowl, housing potato and sweet corn chaat with coriander and mint paste and tamarind paste. The coolness of the dish made for a wonderful combination with the heat of the chili. All components worked well together- the tamarind adding an almost sour flavour and the pomegranate seeds adding freshness to each bite. The chaat bowls were accompanied by an all-spice and chili pickle (not for the faint hearted).

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The second dish was a mixture of foods, more to the style of proper Thali. Cauliflower done 3 ways – tandoori, in a purée and in a coconut and cashew salad was in one bowl, the other bowl contained a signature Thali dish of dhal and paratha concluded the Thali. The dish also included tandoori chicken skewers accompanied by a sort of sweet spicy jam and cucumber raita (similar to tzatziki). This dish was perfect for eating with the senses: the smell of the spices was mouth-watering and the display was tantalizing enough to eat. Which is exactly what we did?

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Fish was the start of the third dish. Kingklip was used in the fish tacos wish was extremely light and fresh after the heaviness of the paratha and spices in the previous dish. In addition to the tacos was seared tuna in a coconut coriander sauce and peanut purée. The tuna was expertly done, yet the lack of a texture component made the combined space and purée almost soup-like.

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South Asian Thali does not usually consist of a meat component but the final serving was combination of lamb curry and Panch phoron (a type of spice blend) seafood curry. It was Thali with a twist. The brass platter also had savoury rice, naan and sambles as accompaniments.

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The pieces of lamb were so tender, it would melt in your mouth and the curry was overall very flavourful, although not as spicy as it could have been (I was born with chilies in my mouth so I can’t complain). The seafood curry was made up of prawn, kingklip and mussels. The Panch Phoran was definitely the star of the dish, however, you can taste that the spice mix did not get to fully absorb into the seafood – a consequence of cooking the protein separately from the sauce.

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The only negative thing about Thali that was noteworthy was that the dishes arrived in rapid succession so the time between meals was too short to really appreciate the dish you’d just eaten before another was placed in front of you.

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I am the harshest critic because I expect so much of Indian cuisine and I’m happy to say I was not in the slightest disappointed with the food. Thali transported me to the olden times of Indian where my great-grandparents may have been eating this food day in and day out, a staple and witness to their lives.

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For the full album click HERE

Restaurant Info:

Thali Restaurant

3 Park Rd,

Gardens

Cape Town,

South Africa

 Tel No: +27 21 286 2110

Email: info@thalitapas.co.za

Please do note they don’t take reservations so come early.

Opening Hours:

Lunch

Tuesday – Saturday

12PM – 2:30PM

Dinner

Monday – Saturday

5PM – 9:30PM

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Lynelle Moodley

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

 

 

 

Babel Restaurant at Babylonstoren – Jan ’18 – Mario Arendse

Babylonstoren, has been on my bucket list for some time, having heard about it from a colleague. I really do enjoy the drive out of the city, seems like time slows down, as you move further and further info Farm country and the rat race.

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The farm is exceptionally well maintained with fruit seemingly bursting from all the trees in abundance. I didn’t come prepared, but I recommend that you wear comfortable sneakers as there is a lot to see on this working farm. Its child friendly, and I’m sure the Donkey’s Trompie and Racheltjie would love to meet them.

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We were scheduled for lunch at the Babel restaurant, a converted cow shed, on what turned out to be a scorcher of a summer’s day.

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Our choices for the starters were:

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Sweet melon topped with pumpkin flower pakora and moringa flower with granadilla and coriander leaves, toasted kalongi seeds and deep fried curry leave served with the optional spicy deep fried calamari.

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Next was the chilled black pearl plum soup with watermelon, frozen black grapes and purple basil. There is an option of adding lightly smoked trout and dill seed ice cream to this dish

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My favourite was the Fig, pear and apple caprese style salad with Baylonstoren  fior di latte cheese and basil pesto (which was made up of seven basil variations)

IMG_3010The starters were really good and the portions were quite generous and diners have the option of making additions to their salads or not in they are vegetarian. Also you can include wine pairing with these courses.

Our main dishes were:

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Grilled Wild mushroom bay leaf skewer on a Persian sauce and green olive tapenade, diners are able to add grilled halloumi cheese

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Babylonstoren carnaroli risotto with creamy parmesan, hyssop salsa verde, tulbaghia and hyssop flowers with optional biltong. This course was the disappointment of the afternoon as it was somewhat under-seasoned and not creamy at all.

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Double lamb cutlets, grilled with Babylonstoren  za’atar spice blend served with purslane, spekboom and tulbaghia tzatziki

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Dry aged Ribeye

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Grilled trout with Fig leaf and lime spice rub and light elderflower vinaigrette.

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We shared a green salad and Kimchi for the table and arguable the best crispy roast potato wedges I have ever had. It will leave you teary eyed, it’s that good.

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Dessert:

Although stuffed, we couldn’t exactly leave without trying the dessert on offer. So we soldiered on and tried;

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Lavender, stevia and coconut panna cotta with chrysanthemum flowers

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Lemon verbena and lemongrass poached pear with elderflower, stevia and day aged lily jelly with roasted pumpkin seed, mint lime and coconut cream.

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There is just so much to do on the farm, so take the time to do so. Walk through the fruit orchards, purchase the most delicious freshly baked bread, I bought one with a whole pear in it, a whole pear!!!!And it was delicious.

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You could also go to the butcher and maybe purchase a beef fillet or aged streak (which was extremely reasonably priced as far as I’m concerned). The service was attentive and homely. I loved the basil pesto so much I asked for a “takeaway”; which our waitress generously had bagged and vacuum-sealed at no cost.

I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, but I need to go back though, as I feel there is more to see…can’t wait!

For the full album click HERE

Restaurant Info:

Babel Restaurant

Tel No:+27 (0)21 863 3852

Email: enquiries@babylonstoren.com.

Opening Hours: 

Breakfast Monday–Sunday: 8h00–9h30
Lunch Wednesday–Sunday: from 12h00
Dinner Monday–Sunday: from 19h00

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Mario Arendse

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

Le Franschhoek Hotel & Journeys End Wines Jan ’18 – by Nicole & Jodie Brown

I’ve always heard about the Franschhoek mountain and the breath-taking views but as we approached the entrance to Le Franschhoek Hotel & Spa and seeing it in person I immediately knew that our stay would be memorable.

It was time to freshen up and get ready for dinner.

Our setting was very romantic with dimmed lights and a pianist to set the mood certainly a great ambience. Each table was specifically set for the number of people who had confirmed and one could see the attention to detail.

Each dish was served with a full detail explanation of how it was prepared and served with a selected wine to complement each dish.

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First on the menu was Orange beetroot cured salmon with maple crème fraiche, which was surprisingly a very good combination, the beetroot just gave that fresh burst with every bite of the salmon.

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We then got our next meal of Grilled Scottish scallop, saffron cream and sautéed Asian slaw. What stood out for me were those scallops that were so buttery, and the Asia slaw had a bit of a kick, but it was a well fitted combination.

 

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It was time for our palate cleanser kiwi sorbet mixed with passion fruit, then on to our mains.

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We started this round of with the roast Market fish with beetroot risotto, wasabi sour cream and coastal greens, this fish was done to perception, its outer nice and crispy with tender insides, the based that it was served on complimented the fish very well and gave extra texture to the dish.

For our final meal we were served with beautifully prepared beef medallions served with onion florets, fava bean puree and butternut gnocchi, this dish had me savouring all the flavours with each bite.

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For dessert they brought out a white coffee and vanilla cream with a raspberry glaze and warm chocolate ganache, this was a perfect way to end of a night filled with carefully prepared food.

In all our experience was good, the hotel itself radiates elegance and sophistication. The room that we stayed in was so cosy and comfortable.

For the full album click HERE

Why not join them for the next Wine Dinner with Painted Wolf Wines

When: 23 February 2018
Where: Le Franschhoek Hotel & Spa, Sauvage restaurant
Time: 18h30 for 19h00

R695 per person (Wine Dinner only)
R3295 per couple (Eat and Stay)

Pre-payment and booking are essential, and seating is limited so make sure not to miss out on this exclusive offer, and call +27 (0)21 876 8900, or email mpc@lefranschhoek.co.za to book now.

Restaurant Info:

SAUVAGE

Le Franschhoek Hotel and Spa

16 Minor road,

Franschhoek, 7690

South Africa

Sauvage Menu

Tel No: +27 21 876 8900

Email: reservations@lefranschhoek.co.za

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jody & Nicole Brown

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen

 

 

Dalliance Restaurant – Jan ’18 – by Mario Arendse

I’ll be the first to admit that I really don’t enjoy going to the V&A, again nothing against the venue itself it’s just that I don’t enjoy the touristy feel or touristy prices for that matter.

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But every once in a while though, you come across a little gem that attempts to change this grinch’s mind. Dalliance certainly is that gem. It’s surrounded by top end brands such as Louis Vuitton and Gucci and is nowhere near the hustle and bustle of the “foodcourt/restaurant” area.

 

We were booked for a lazy Sunday lunch and got to enjoy a view of the bay as whales breached. The menu had good variation and the service was excellent.

PLATES TO SHARE

Oysters au Naturel (x3)

Salt, Pepper & Tabasco 65

Horseradish, Lemon & Black Pepper 85

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Sardines – Peri-Peri, Lemon 65

Prawns – Garlic, Chilli, Parsley, White Wine, Butter 105

Grilled Calamari – Pineapple, Peppers, Vinaigrette 85

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White Bait – Flour, Salt, Black Pepper, House Tartar 60

Trinchado – Braised Beef, Chilli Garlic, Portuguese Roll 70

Beef Short Rib – Marrow, Mushroom Duxelle & Bone Marrow Gratin 95

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Beef Slider – Pickles & Frizzled Onion 70

Chicken Slider – Pickles, Dill Cucumber, Mustard Mayo, 65

& Frizzled Onion

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Chicken Wings – Spicy Sticky Barbecue 60

Hummus – Grilled Pita Bread 55

SALADS

Tuna Niçoise – Green Peas, Egg, Capers, Olives, Baby New Potato 100

Goat’s Cheese – Walnuts, Beetroot & Watercress 55

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Garden Greens – Pine Nuts, Avo, Feta & Apple 80

Greek – Grilled Feta, Olives, Chilli, Garlic, Thyme, Cucumber, Tomato 60

Cobb – Chicken, Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado, Boiled Egg, Blue Cheese 75

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BOWLS & THINGS

Prawn Linguine – Garlic, Chilli, Cherry Tomatoes 175

Lamb Curry – Cucumber Mint Raita, Naan 95

Butter Chicken – Naan 85

SIGNIFICANT OTHERS

FISH & SHELLFISH

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Crayfish – Butter, Garlic, Lemon SQ

Langoustine – Butter, Garlic, Lemon SQ

Prawns (x3) – Butter, Garlic, Lemon 100

Norwegian Salmon – Fennel & Lemon Quinoa, Herb Yoghurt SQ

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White Fish Tempura – House Tartar, Skinny Fries 130

Baby Kingklip – Garlic, Chilli & Cherry Tomatoes 200

Line Fish – Green Beans & Lemon Caper Butter 170

MEAT

Sirloin – Chimichurri, Roast Potatoes 140

Ribeye – Truffle Garlic Butter, House Crisps 160

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Pepper Fillet – Pepper Sauce, Potato Purée 190

Fillet – Béarnaise, Skinny Fries 180

Lamb Chops – Lemon, Garlic, Rosemary, Olive Oil, Thyme 220

Chargrilled Chicken – Chilli, Corn Salsa, Tortilla 110

DESSERTS

Fondant – Vanilla Ice Cream 65

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Marshmallow – Chocolate, Marshmallow, Mango & Peanut Butter 85

Crème Caramel – Caramel Ice Cream 50

Cheesecake – Pineapple Ice Cream 60

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Iced Nougat – Exotic Fruit & Mango Sorbet 65

Brulée – New York Cheesecake & Shortbread 50

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Beignets – Chocolate, Crème Chantilly & Raspberries 70

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We choose the following to start off our culinary journey:

Sardines with peri-peri and lemon which received a rave review.

Prawns in garlic, chilli, parsley, white wine and butter

Chicken slider with pickles, Dill cucumber and mustard mayo

Grilled calamari with pineapple, peppers and a vinaigrette

My favourite was the Beef Short Rib with marrow, mushroom duxelle and bone marrow gratin; it was tender, tasty and absolutely delicious.

Then it was onto our mains :

Prawns with butter, garlic and lemon

Norwegian Salmon, Fennel and lemon quinoa, herb yoghurt

Baby Kingklip with garlic chili and cherry tomatoes, beautifully presented.

Sirloin with chimichurri and roast potatoes.

Butter chicken with Naan.

As much as simply couldn’t have another morsel but onto dessert we moved…

Beignets, chocolate, crème Chantilly and raspberries

Marshmallow with chocolate, marshmallow, mango and peanut butter.

All the courses were exquisitely presented and prepared to perfection. The milkshakes were sublime and I was forced to try both the Chocolate milkshake and the Salted Caramel flavour. Dalliance is now one of my favourite venues in the V&A unassuming, but definitely worth a visit.

For the full album click HERE

FULL MENU

Restaurant Info:

Dalliance at V&A WATERFRONT

Shop 7216A,

V&A Waterfront,

Cape Town,

South Africa

Tel No: +27 (0) 21 418 1037

Email: info@dalliancerestaurant.co.za

Opening Hours: Monday to Sunday, 12pm to 11pm

Written for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Mario Arendse

Photography for JAR PHOTOGRAPHY by Jason “Dubbz” Petersen