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Jonno (1)

Banting dinners with Jonno Proudfoot

We were very fortunate to have several years of Jonno Proudfoot's skill and energy while he was part of our team. We're super-proud of what he's done since then (clue: he swam to Madagascar - as one does - in addition to co-authoring Real Meal Revolution, and starting a family).

We're looking forward to welcoming him back for his talk 'After the Revolution' accompanied by a Banting dinner. We're offering the experience at Polo Club (on Val de Vie estate) on 28 June, and at Cucina Labia on the 29th.

Click here for information about the menus and how-tos for booking: Dinner at Polo Club Dinner at Cucina Labia

whisky_pairing

A Great Whisky Experience

Food is not something that happens in isolation. Cuisine is an expression of the surrounding culture, and we generally eat food in a convivial atmosphere amongst other people. Hence the "food and social" part of our name.

Food is often also enjoyed in partnership with drinks, whether wine or a variety of spirits, cocktails or beer. It is not only challenging, but also stimulating, for us to be asked to pair clients' drinks with complementary foods.

One of our favourite 'gigs' has been creating a pairing menu for the Three Ships range of whiskies. In putting the line-up together, we worked with a few of the classic whisky partners, to which we added a twist ... and a few of our own inventions. Our monthly whisky dinners at Garrett Bar have given us a fantastic database to draw on. If we say so ourselves, we think that the dried apple crisps are a fantastic carrier, in place of crackers.

After extensive renovations, the Sedgwick distillery in Wellington is now open for tours, during which you can taste their range of excellent whiskies, paired with five different 'dips'. The idea is that you take time to try each of them with the three different whiskies that accompany them. "It's all just whisky", you may say, but you'll be amazed at how different the experience is with each flavour combination.

Click here to book online.

Dish Food & Social - Beef Stew 002 small

Tuesday Specials

Take Tuesdays off this winter, with our weekly dinner-for-four special offer. The menu varies throughout winter, but it's headlined by the Dish Butter Chicken with rice and rotis for just R195 (for 4). You place your order by 10.00 am every Tuesday, or by 3.00 pm the day before if you need a delivery (extra charges apply), and collect at your preferred collection point.

We offer collections at:

  • Klooftique (87 Kloof Street, Gardens): 4.00 to 6.00pm on Tuesday
  • Wine Concepts (next to Barristers, Main Street, Newlands): 2.00 to 4.00pm on Tuesday
  • Polo Club Restaurant (Val de Vie Estate, Paarl): 2.00 to 4.00pm on Tuesday
  • Pearl Valley Clubhouse (Pearl Valley Estate, Paarl): 2.00 to 4.00pm on Tuesday
  • Cucina Labia (192 Main Road, Muizenberg): 2.30 to 4.30pm on Tuesday

Join our Tuesday Specials mailing list by entering your details below:
kofta

It Shouldn’t Happen to a Caterer

My drive home on Thursday evening involved a detour via the supermarket (let’s just say I wasn’t enthralled at the prospect of eating chicken for the third night in a row). Amongst the options was lamb mince, which is not something I often see, immediately available.

What’s a girl to do with lamb mince, other than koftas? And, if you’re going to make koftas you may as well go the whole hog (purely in a manner of speaking, of course) and do an entire Greek dinner. So, one thing led to another, resulting in a little themed evening on Friday.

However, I interfered in Aedan’s baklava at just the wrong time, in that I poured the syrup over the dish’s contents before it went into the oven. The result (still tasty, admittedly) was the not-quite praline version of baklava, which goes to show that anyone who gets me on their catering job – rather than one of my fabulous kitchen professionals – truly has the F team.

gnocchi

Gnocchi: sautéed or boiled

The debate I’m about to flag isn’t one of the world’s great existential questions, but it is an interesting one. It comes down to whether you prefer your gnocchi just boiled, or boiled and then sautéed.

One of the primary sources of flavour in cooked food is the caramelised – or browned – bit on the outside. Whether it’s a steak, a pizza, stir-fried veg, or a piece of fish, we have the Maillard effect to thank for tasty food. Hence our preference for tossing the gnocchi into a hot pan for a few minutes just before serving.

However, this has occasionally resulted in diners (presumably surprised by the crispiness) sending back the meal.

We’ve posted this as an item on the Dish Food & Social Facebook page. We’d love feedback, so please comment on the post. How do you prefer your gnocchi?

The Red Table exterior LR 11

Lunch with Mature Auction Wines

We’re always on the lookout for interesting eating and drinking opportunities (preferably at a bargain price). We’ve spent at least a year nagging the powers at Nederburg to release archive wines for us to use in themed lunches/dinners at The Red Table. We were delighted when they finally invited us to select from a bunch of wines that are 10 years old (and older … except for the white wine, of course). We were even more delighted when they turned out to be Auction wines.

We’re very excited about the selection we’ve made of perfectly aged wines, from Viognier to Merlot to Bordeaux blend to absolutely scintillating Riesling Noble Late Harvest. Getting access to these wines was quite a coup, if we say so ourselves. Having secured the wines, we set Chef Edmore Ruzoza the challenge of creating a four-course menu, which we tasted last week:NEDERBURG PRIVATE BIN D212 VIOGNIER 2008 Creamy mussel chowder with a sweet corn stick bread NEDERBURG PRIVATE BIN R191 MERLOT 2004 Confit duck leg with 4 red fruits sweet potato fondant, sesame tossed mange tout and mocca jus NEDERBURG PRIVATE BIN R109 CABERNET/MERLOT 2001 Slow braised Springbok and cranberry denningvleis accompanied by rustic potato croquettes and grilled baby marrow NEDERBURG PRIVATE BIN NLH WEISSER RIESLING 2003 Quince bavarois creme with phyllo pastry layers topped with a Rooibos infused froth. You’ll note that the wine is listed first, because this is about allowing the wine to shine. This is not the time or place for culinary pyrotechnics!

These are wines that sell for hundreds of rands per bottle. We’re offering the entire experience – four courses, plus a glass of wine with each course – for just R360 per person, for groups of 10 people. There are various dining areas in- and outside the manor house, but the original dining room is particularly grand, with a table that seats 10 people in baronial style.Wine quantities are limited so don’t delay! To book, phone 021-8775155 or email: theredtable@nederburg.co.za. The experience is available Tuesday to Sunday until the end of August (or while stocks last!) and must be booked in advance. Dinners may also be possible, by prior arrangement.