Saturday, March 01, 2014

Colmant Wine & Dine at The Mount Nelson's The Planet Restaurant

We receive lovely invitations and this week it was one to attend the first of the Wine and Dine pairing diners that the Mount Nelson Hotel will be running through the coming year. Click here for the programme. Executive Chef Rudi Liebenberg and Sommelier Pearl Oliver have teamed up with some of the world's most talented winemakers, brew masters and whiskey producers to bring you these delicious gastronomic evenings.
Chef Rudi and Sommelier Pearl Oliver, who invited us, had matched the seven course menu to compliment the MCC sparkling wines of JP Colmant in Franschhoek, plus two champagnes from France, the Follet and the Tribaut, which JP represents in South Africa.
We met Gabi Palmer, the PR Manager of the Nellie (Cape Town’s fond nickname for our Grande Dame of hotels at the top of town), for a pre-dinner drink on the terrace before dinner and enjoyed the lovely summer evening
The garden is at its best at this time of year and well worth a wander
Canapés of fresh West Coast oysters with a tomato salsa greeted the guests. These dinners are extremely good value at R485 per person for a seven course dinner including the canapés and all the wines
and Jean-Philippe Colmant and his fiancée Janine greeted us with a glass of his other French Champagne, Tribaut
Guests getting a refill of this delicious bubbly
We took our seats in the stately Planet restaurant and JP introduced us to his wines
This was the menu for the evening
JP gets a guest to do some Sabrage (opening the bottle with a sword as Napoleon’s Hussars used to do) on a bottle of his bubbly
She was an expert and didn’t spill a drop. To quote Napoleon : "Champagne! In victory one deserves it; in defeat one needs it."
The beautiful central chandelier is a myriad of stars
The scallops were sweet and perfectly cooked and this dish in particular, really highlighted the flavours of the Brut Chardonnay
A novel way of displaying and storing the restaurant’s wine collection
Beautifully cooked, melt in the mouth salmon confit was another great match with the Brut Rosé
A palate cleanser of roasted peach and nectarine sorbet
The duck sausage was the star of this plate, as the breast although perfectly cooked, was a little tough, as we so often find with local duck. The cherries were a lovely counterpoint to the Brut Reserve
The pastry chef tells us how she came up with the dessert to match the wines
Some interesting local goat cheeses went very, very well with the Follet Champagne. We must confess we did not have expectations of a good match, so this was a nice surprise
This rich dessert was decadent beyond belief and after so many rich courses some of us struggled to finish the huge helping of orange flavoured chocolate mousse. Not John of course. We need the recipe for the chocolate sorbet, it was light but dense in dark chocolate flavours without being buttery and claggy. Super little surprises were the paté de fruit – nice intense fruit jellies
It was really nice to see that some of our readers had decided to come to the dinner
A private table in the wine cellar
Sommelier Pearl Oliver, the Mount Nelson’s Executive Chef Rudi Liebenberg, JP Colmant and his fiancé Janine. It was an extremely enjoyable evening
Do investigate the events yet to come, we think you will enjoy them a lot
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2014


© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus 2014

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