Thursday, April 23, 2015

Launch of the New Bacon Bar on Bree Street

Tonight I was invited to the launch of the brand new bacon bar on Bree Street (where else?).
The bustling spot, previously home to Sarah Ord Interiors, was packed with journos, local foodies, a giraffe and the fabulous Roger from Jorgensen's distillery – who was there launching his new hibiscus pink gin. (For more info, visit: http://www.jd7.co.za)


The decor is minimalistic, but rustic-chic, as most Bree-town spots are. I loved the wallpaper downstairs, next to the room that acts as an art gallery. 

The bacon bas is the brainchild of Richard Bosman – well-known for his charcuterie around South Africa – and will feature a menu of sandwiches and a selection of his meats for tasting and for sale to take home. They do not yet have a liquor licence, but are awaiting approval.





With the success of the bacon bar in Franschhoek, it's no surprise that Cape Town would want its own taste of piggy, although one of my favourite things tonight – besides the crispy crackling, also for sale – was not made from pig at all. I loved the chicken wings, basted in bacon sauce. I mean, who does not love a sticky chicken wing (as long as no one is watching you getting down and dirty, looking like The Bone Collector)?

The bar is a daytime spot – but it will stay open at night for #firstThursdays – so make sure to grab some lunch when you're in the neighbourhood.


Wine and Food Winter Weekend Getaways at Bushmans Kloof

Planning a getaway this winter? Look no further than the Cederberg! Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve and Wellness Retreat is the go-to destination for delicious signature Food and Wine Weekends held in June, July and August.


Executive Chef Floris Smith will be teaming up with respected local winemakers from four top wine farms, to create inspired culinary creations that perfectly capture the tastes and flavours of the Cape Floral Kingdom.
All weekends will include special presentations, talks and tastings, nature drives, rock-art excursions, all meals, wine and lodge activities.

The dates for the gourmet weekend getaways are as follows:

Glen Carlou 29 – 31 May 2015
Bouchard Finlayson 26 - 28 June 2015
Cederberg Private Cellar 24 – 26 July 2015
Constantia Uitsig 21 – 23 August 2015




From R2 635 per person per night, sharing and including all meals and lodge activities
Follow these guys on twitter for more info:
@BushmansKloof
@FiveStarPRZA

New Cape Town City Walk Saturdays

The first ever City Walk Saturdays was launched by the Cape Town Partnership last weekend on the 18th of April.



The event featured Capoeira, tango and swing dance sessions, a tranquillity zone with meditation and yoga, jumping castles and kids storytelling time. Skateboarders whizzed through the space and curious squirrels watched as giant scrabble and pavement chalk unfolded. Onlookers were treated to special sound effects of the Sound Project and puppets entertained people along the route... just imagine the colourful, cultural circus...

The City Walk is a new storytelling route that encompasses the Company’s Gardens, St George’s Mall and the Fanwalk. It will be activated every third Saturday of the month – expect events, installations, experimental ideas and art. The next ones take place on 16 May and the one after on 20 June from 10am to 2pm.

Locals and visitors will be able to access the City Walk area’s cultural, architectural and historical landmarks through the route map, available at outlets along the way and through Cape Town Tourism.

For more information follow the Cape Town Partnership on Twitter @ctpartnership and use #walkcapetown, or visit http://www.capetownpartnership.co.za or call 021 419 1881.

Monday, April 20, 2015

New Monthly Good Night Market at the V&A Waterfront Watershed

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Make sure you're free next week Wednesday for the launch of the inaugural Monthly ‘Good Night Market’ at the V&A Waterfront's newly revamped creative space: The Watershed.

The market is expected to run every last Wednesday of the month. Entertainment will run from 6pm to 9pm: a celebration of local creativity. Expect live music, artsy food trucks, stylish drinks bar, exhibitions and a general good time!

A large-scale photographic exhibition called “Unordinary” will be housed in the east wing of The Watershed on the evening of the first Good Night Market, with visitors free to explore all The Watershed has to offer.

Entrance to the Good Night Market is free.

South Africa's First Pinotage Lounge



L’Avenir wine estate in Stellenbosch has unveiled its exclusive Pinotage Lounge... Enthusiasts of the varietal can experience exclusive tastings hosted by the winemaker, Dirk Coetzee. Not only can the space be booked for intimate events and corporate functions, but visitors now have the opportunity to taste and purchase rare older vintages dating back to the 1970s.

Pinotage, a blend of the notoriously fickle Pinot Noir grape and the hardier Hermitage (commonly known as Cinsault), has been cultivated exclusively in South Africa since the early 1940s and is recognised for its red-fruit characteristics often showing notes of chocolate and tobacco with soft tannins on the palate.







Book your vista by emailing info@lavenir.co.za or contact Hantie Smit on 083 627 5551.  For more information about the wine estate, visit http://www.lavenirestate.co.za/legal

Friday, April 17, 2015

Wheat-Free Vegan Super Salad

Getting bored of the usual cucumber and lettuce, but trying to get enough greens? Salads don’t need to be boring. Liven yours up by swapping iceberg lettuce for baby spinach or rocket and kale. This will also boost your nutrient count! Don’t want to lose the protein? You don’t have to. Swap out that smoked chicken or bacon for a few tablespoons of quinoa. It’s healthier too.
When I’m on deadline, I need easy-to-make desk lunches that can keep me feeling energised throughout the afternoon. I mostly stick to salads because they’re light – so I don’t get that 2:30pm lethargy – and I can cram in extra veg.



What You Need
1 handful kale
1 handful rocket
1 handful baby spinach
3 to 4 tbsp quinoa
2 tbsp mixed sprouts
2 tbsp chopped sundried tomatoes
2 tbsp thinly sliced carrot
2 tbsp shredded cabbage
A few Kalamata olives
1 tsp goji berries
1 tsp dried cranberries
A drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Method
Toss all the ingredients together and serve. If you’re packing it for the office, don’t dress the salad until you’re just about to eat.

Gluten-free, dairy-free dark-chocolate tart


This recipe is a classic that I make regularly for dinner parties. 

It doesn’t require any oven time and your vegan buddies will love it too! But this recipe does come with a disclaimer: warning, very rich! You can leave the sugar out, I only add it in to take the edge off the bitter chocolate. Alternatively, you can use 75% Lindt instead of the 85% or 90%. You can add extra raspberries as desired. 



What You Need
SERVES 8 TO 10
1 cup desiccated coconut
3 tbsp coconut oil, plus a little extra
1 tin coconut cream 
2 large slabs 85% or 90% Lindt chocolate (Lindt 70% and above does not contain dairy)
2 tbsp icing sugar or two sticks of sweetener, plus extra for sprinkling over afterwards (optional)
1 tub (125g to 150g) raspberries

Method
1/ Mix the desiccated coconut with the coconut oil. Press firmly onto the bottom of a springform tart tin. It should just be enough to cover the bottom so that you cannot see the base of the tin. Depending on the size of your tin you may need to add some more desiccated coconut. Grease the sides of the tart tin with coconut oil too. Place the tin in the freezer while you prepare the mixture, so it firms up and hardens instantly.
2/ Place the coconut cream in a saucepan over low heat. Stir until warm. Break the chocolate into pieces and add them to the coconut mixture. Stir until the chocolate has melted and a ganache-style mixture forms. Add your icing sugar or sweetener and stir to combine. Pour mixture into the chilled tart tin and leave in the fridge to set over night (or for at least 4 hours).
3/ Remove the tart from the fridge and gently remove the sides of the tart casing. Slide a spatula under the tart to remove the bottom from the base and place the tart on a serving tray. Sprinkle fresh raspberries over with a dusting of icing sugar and serve.