Last year I shared a list of my top wines for summer, which I have updated with my Top South African Wine for Summer 2017. A few of the previous selection have remained unchanged, with the addition of a few newcomers.
Soup is one of my favourite comfort foods and something I love eating all year round but especially in winter. Tomato soup, is my ultimate when it comes to comfort, feel-good foodI Making tomato soup is also a great way to use up excess tomatoes.[Read more…]
I love fresh coriander, especially sprinkled over a hot curry! Coriander or cilantro (as it is known in the US) leaves are so versatile and are delicious as salad leaves. Coriander contains antioxidants and has been found to have significant antibacterial properties! I thought I would try my hand at making a Coriander Pesto, as an alternative to Basil Pesto. [Read more…]
One of my favourite things about summer is eating delicious fresh salads, like this Simple Tomato Salad with Red Onion & Mint! I love creating new recipes when I have time and trying different flavour combinations. Inspiration hit after we returned from our holiday to find a tomato plant gone wild! I decided to use some of our homegrown bounties and create this Tomato Salad. [Read more…]
At the end of last year Grant and I stayed at The Verge Aparthotel Sea Point. The Verge is centrally located within the heart of Sea Point on the Atlantic Seaboard, in Cape Town. It offers guests a unique accommodation option, which has all the convenience of a hotel, with the comfort of home.
The Verge Aparthotel
The complex houses 21 impeccably furnished, fully equipped suites, which are available for stays of one night or longer. Weekly and monthly rates are available on request for guests requiring a longer stay. The Verge offers a host of on-site facilities, which include a front desk concierge, round the clock security, free WiFi, secure free parking and keycard access.
The accommodation is well-priced, offering a solution that caters to business, as well as leisure travellers. The elegantly designed self-catering suites, include a selection of one and two bedroom units. All suites are furnished to a four-star level, with luxurious, modern furnishings and a fully kitted out kitchen.
I loved the arty décor touches and the hand-chosen artwork, which all enhance the space, giving it a sense of warmth and style. The bedroom is elegantly furnished and the bed was super comfy, which in my opinion is a very important factor, when selecting accommodation!
Our apartment had balcony with an amazing view of Lions Head! The balcony area is equipped with a patio table and chairs, as well as a gas braai if you are keen to embrace your inner braai-master!
The complex lies just one block away from the iconic Sea Point promenade, with a selection of excellent restaurants, coffee shops, cocktail bars and eateries found within walking distance. Early evening we decided to walked down to the promenade and watch the sun set. Naturally this had to be done with a delicious Italian ice cream in hand. En route back to the apartment we picked up a few breakfast supplies at Woolworths and then stopped off at Simply Asia for a takeaway dinner.
Both Grant and I really enjoyed our stay at The Verge Aparthotel Sea Point! The location is perfect and we both loved the convenience of being able to walk down to the shops, as well as the promenade. It is also a mere 5 minute taxi trip to V&A Waterfront and within easy reach of Camps Bay or Clifton beach. For those travelling on business, the Cape Town International Convention Centre and CBD are equally close by.
Contact and Location:
Contact: To book accommodation or find out more please contact The Verge via tel +27 21 286 0794 or The Verge Aparthotel Website.
Location: Cnr Main Rd & Holmfirth Rd, Sea Point, Cape Town, 8060, South Africa
The Vineyard Hotel is one of my favourite hotels in the Southern Suburbs. Located in the leafy suburb of Newlands, the hotel is popular with the both locals, as well as international visitors. One of the major draw cards of the hotel, is the wonderful culinary offering and more especially the Myoga 7 Course Tasting Menu!
Myoga 7 Course Tasting Menu
One of my favourite dining experiences to date, has to be the tasting menu at Myoga. The restaurant recently underwent a revamp and we were delighted to be invited back to enjoy the 7-course tasting. The sophisticated space is now lighter and brighter, making it an ideal lunchtime venue as well as a special place for dinner.
Myoga offers a tasting degustation menu, which is different from the tasting menus found in other restaurants because it offers so many choices.
Degustation ~ a culinary term meaning a careful, appreciative tasting of various foods and focusing on the gustatory system, the senses, high culinary art and good company. Dégustation is more likely to involve sampling small portions of all of a chef’s signature dishes in one sitting.
The Myoga 7 course tasting menu, created by award winning chef Mike Bassett, offers no less than five (sometimes six!) options for each course.
In addition to the 7 course menu, you will find a unique dish of the chef’s creation – a palate “tickler”. To delight your palate even further, there is a clever and delicious surprise at the beginning and the end of the meal. I will spoil the surprise for you – you will simply have to experience it for yourself!
The innovation and creativity, which Mike Bassett is renowned for is evident in every one of the dishes served! One of the dishes, which stood out for both Grant and I was a savoury Oatmeal porridge. What an amazing taste journey, from such an unassuming dish!
The menu will truly delight all your sense and take you on a culinary adventure! The Black Salted Squid, with black aioli, anchovy lime condensed milk, white almond gazpacho sphere, Iberico ham and celery scented potato, was pure sophistication on a plate.
One of my favourite dishes was the All White Scallop! Served with macadamia buttered root vegetable puree, refried white beans, horseradish cream and a orange gastrique – it was one of the most amazing scallop dishes I have ever eaten!
Every dish is beautifully presented – an artwork on a plate. The “Granny Smith” desert above is no exception! Sour cream apple cake, served with caramel créme pâtissière, roasted apple ice cream, apple gel and almond crumble was a sublime ending to an extraordinary meal!
As well as experiencing amazing new taste sensations, we enjoyed a great selection of excellently paired wines. Some of which neither of us had tasted before.
I can go on and on about the Myoga 7 Course Tasting Menu but it is something you should definitely experience for yourself! Just when you thought the was nothing new under the sun, you taste something which truly surprises you!
Details and Location:
The Myoga 7 Course Tasting Menu including wine pairing is R620 per person or R355 without wine. To book please contact Restaurant Reservations Tel: +27 21 657 4545, Fax: +27 21 657 4543, via email: [email protected] or visit the Myoga Website .
Opening Hours: Dinner: 19:00pm – 22:30pm Monday to Saturday, Lunch: 11:30am – 15:00pm Tuesday to Saturday
Location: The Vineyard Hotel, Colinton Rd, Newlands, Cape Town, 7700, South Africa
One of the things Grant and I have really enjoyed doing over the past few years, is staying overnight in the Cape Town CBD. Cape Town has so much to offer as far as accommodation goes, ranging from fabulous Luxury Hotels, Cosy B&B’s to Self-catering Apartments. When booking accommodation, location is everything! If you get it wrong, your experience can be rather unpleasant. My advice is, select accommodation that is centrally located but not in the hub of the busy nightlife. That is if you would like to get any sleep at all! Our most recent romantic getaway was to the the Radisson Blu Hotel Cape Town.
Radisson Blu Hotel Cape Town
The Radisson Blu Hotel is situated on the picturesque waterfront of Cape Town, with the iconic Table Mountain as a backdrop. It is also a heartbeat away from Cape Town’s pulsating business centre with The Cape Town International Convention Centre only five minutes away. The famous Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, which has a vast selection of Shops and Restaurants , is an easy stroll (or complimentary shuttle), from the Hotel. A short trip also gets you to some of Africa’s most beautiful beaches. Location, location, location!
The Hotel offers 177 elegantly designed guest rooms, including 11 Two Bedroom suites and 71 Business Class rooms. These rooms all have private balconies and spectacular views. Additionally there are 9 Superior rooms and 86 Non-Sea Facing Standard Rooms. All guest rooms are equipped with free Wifi, direct dial telephones and 42-inch HD TV’s with HD DSTV channels in all rooms. There is also a mini bar, tea and premium coffee-making facilities.
We were fortunate enough to stay in a gorgeous Business Class Room with the most breathtaking view over the pool area and across the bay.
The room was wonderfully spacious, with a cosy lounge area. Grant and I are both fussy when it comes to hotel beds and pillows! The Radisson did not dissapoint – the bed was super comfortable, with the most silky soft linen. There is also a pillow menu available, if the ones provided are not to your liking.
After dropping our luggage in our room, we hopped on the courtesy shuttle, which leaves the hotel every hour, to visit the V&A Waterfront. First on the agenda was a bite of lunch, at Willoughby & Co, one of our favourite sushi spots! Mr had a hair cut booked, so I did what I do best – shopping! We decided on a walk back to the hotel – it was such a beautiful day for a stroll to take in the sights.
A quick change and we set off for the rim-flow swimming pool, which is heated year-round I might add! A definite win in my books. We spent a wonderful few hours doing nothing more than reading, sipping on G&Ts and simply relaxing.
The atmosphere on the terrace is very relaxed and you certainly do not need to dress up. After a quick shower we decided to enjoy a few cocktails, while soaking up the gorgeous view and watching the yachts sail past.
The Hotel’s Executive Chef brings many years of experience to the table, to provide an internationally inspired menu, catering for just about every taste. Expect a combination of fresh local dishes with exotic delicacies, all complemented by superb South African wines.
As well as the normal a la carte menu, the Radisson Blu Hotel Cape Town has introduced a new seaside grill eating experience at Tobago’s. The seafood grill is available every Saturday from 6.30pm to 10pm, until the end of April 2016.
It is a buffet style seafood offering with line fish, calamari, paella, mussels, and seafood kebabs. For meat lovers there is also a curry, sirloin beef and shoulder of lamb, all available with salads and vegetables dishes. If you still have room, there is a selection of decadent deserts including pavlova, crème caramel, chocolate mousse, profiteroles and fruit salad. The cost is R295 per person.
The Amani Spa
Before checking out the next morning we had a couples massage booked at hotel spa. Both Grant and I were really looking forward to our massage, as the last few months have been rather stressful!
From the exterior the spa is rather unassuming but what waits behind the glass doors is anything but! The Amani Spa at the Radisson Blu Hotel Waterfront offers guests the ultimate in relaxation and pampering. The state-of-the-art unisex spa, boasts ten luxurious treatment rooms, plus a couples spa suite. Wellness facilities include a heated vitality pool, duo vichy showers, kneipp, caldarium, sensation shower and sauna as well as a high-tech gym overlooking the harbour.
Amani Spa’s philosophy of 360° health, beauty and wellness is all encompassing, embracing all aspects of holistic health and beauty. Indulge yourself with one of our signature spa rituals, the Amani Journey – an aura cleanse, body balance and sensory feast for one or two people.
After changing into our robes, we were shown to the couples spa suite – or as I would like to think of it, a small slice of heaven. I have had many massages in my time, ranging from some which have been fantastic, to some which have been downright torture. So you must realise when I say it was good it was GOOD! I carry the weight of the world on my shoulders or as my therapist suggested all the stress of 2015 – so anyone who can deal with all that tension is a miracle worker!
The Spa offers customised spa packages for each and every occasion, from day spa packages to stay over packages, for an individual or for a group as well as unique Corporate Wellness packages. The Amani Spa and Fitness Facility is open to hotel guests as well as to day visitors seven days a week, 365 days a year, including public holidays. Please note that the spa vitality pool is not available for kids under the age of 16 years.
The Radisson Blu Hotel Cape Town has definitely been added to my list of top hotels in Cape Town. The location is perfect as a tourist or as a local! I love the fact that you can act like a tourist in your own city. Tobago’s restaurant is a great a spot, whether you are a hotel guest or not!The facilities at the hotel are great and the staff were friendly and very helpful.
Location & Contact Details:
Location: Beach Road, Granger Bay, Cape Town 8002, South Africa. Contact: For bookings please contact the hotel via Tel: +27 21 441 3000, Fax: +27 21 441 3560 or Email: [email protected] or visit the Radisson Blu Hotel Cape Town Website.
I was delighted when I heard that Open Door Restaurant, at Constantia Uitsig, had introduced a breakfast menu. Going out for breakfast on the weekend has always been something of a family ritual, and I love finding new places to try! [Read more…]