Friday, May 13, 2016

This week’s MENU Mondiall, new Idiom venue, Wade Bales wine & whisky, Old Mutual Trophy, 96 Winery Rd 20th birthday

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Another busy week and two stories will have to wait until next week. We drove up the West coast to visit two wonderful destinations and there just has not been enough time to edit photographs and put together all the words, so our stories about Thali Thali and !Khwa ttu will be in next week’s MENU, which will be the last we will publish for a couple of weeks. As we said last week we will fly to Hong Kong next Friday to visit Vinexpo and then have a week’s holiday in Vietnam. To see what we’ll be doing, please follow us on Twittter, Facebook, Google+ and our blogs. All the links are on our blog page. Choose any of them which suits you
New chef and menu at Mondiall, V&A Waterfront      Patrick Symington is the owner of Mondiall Kitchen and Bar in the waterfront and he invited us and a few other media people to come and sample the food of his new chef Stephen Mandes, their new Autumn/Winter menu and see their fresh new look. We had a lovely relaxed lunch in this waterside venue with some of the best views in Cape Town. Read On
Idiom Wines new Restaurant and Tasting Centre     We have known the Bottega family for a long while. We used to sell both their Whalehaven and Idiom wines in our shop, Main Ingredient, and got to know them then as they have a house in Fresnaye and Mrs Valerie Bottega is a keen cook. Last week, we were invited to join other members of the media to see the impressive new mountain venue high up on the slopes of Sir Lowry’s Pass. Read on
Wade Bales Wine and Malt Whisky Affair     Thursday was the trade night at this annual event held at 15 on Orange Hotel at the top of town and it was buzzing with wine and spirit people.  Wade came up with a new idea this year. All of the wine and whisky people showcasing their products had to bring something rare and different and at 7.15 a bell rang and for just 15 minutes you could race around to taste the special offerings.  But the evening had many special things to taste. Read on
Old Mutual Trophy Feedback session     You may not agree with wine competitions or guides, you may, as we do, find them quite useful in gauging where the industry is currently. This competition run by Michael Fridjhon allows the media and the wine industry access to the judges - local and international - on the last day when judging is over and we get to hear their unbiased opinions of the entries they have tasted blind during the week. They do not know at this stage which wines they tasted, they are only revealed on the day the awards are presented, so hearing their opinions is always fascinating. And some years it gets quite exciting... Read On
96 Winery Road 20th Anniversary     How many of you remember the original Gatrile, Son and Co restaurant in Johannesburg in the mid 70s. (It has now moved from the city centre to Sandton, like much of the business which started in central Jhb. John was in advertising in Jhb then and it was the “in” place to eat and entertain clients if you were in the advertising industry. Ken Forrester was the manager and, later, part owner
Twenty years ago, in 1996, after twenty years at Gatrile, Ken came to Cape Town and opened 96 Winery Road across the road from his farm, Scholtzenhof, in the Helderberg valley. His brother Allan joined him as manager and partner. Chef Natasha Harris has also been with them since the start. She took over as head chef from Kathy Romer-Lee. It has very much the same concept, local and fresh and now often organic, and one very important beloved recipe, Duck and Cherry Pie, which goes so well with Ken’s Syrah Grenache, is still on the menu. Ken went on to start Ken Forrester wines and with winemaker Martin Meinert has produced some very special Chenin Blancs and other excellent wines. But, last Saturday, it was time for 96 Winery Road to celebrate its success with a party for special customers, suppliers, and friends. Everyone was invited to bring the family. It was a great fun day.  See it all here
Wine of the Week      We have had some lovely red wines this week but the one that stands out is the 2013 Hartenberg Doorkeeper Shiraz, soft, fruity and spicy and very approachable

Carl Schultz and his team are renowned for their Shirazes, including the premium wines Gravel Hill and The Stork. This is the "entry level". Superb with meat, stews and game. As they say,"it is a younger, more modern style Shiraz than those for which Hartenberg is renowned". Retails for R70 on the farm, impressively affordable for an estate wine
This week's recipe      We had the most marvellous chocolate cake this week and as there is a birthday in the family, Lynne is going to make this for Sunday. It is incredibly rich and decadent, not that difficult to make, just a layer of rich almond flour (gluten free) chocolate cake drenched in a little fruit liqueur or fruit syrup, a thick layer of dark chocolate mousse and some raspberries or chocolate curls to top it. Do make the day before in order for it to set, it will be very soft.
Chocolate Mousse Cake

125g dark bitter chocolate – 100g butter – 100g caster sugar – 15ml rum or brandy - 15ml strong black coffee -100g ground almonds – 3 eggs, separated
Break up the chocolate into a glass bowl, add the butter, rum or brandy and the coffee and heat gently in the microwave or over a pan of hot water until melted. Take off the heat and stir in the ground almonds. Beat the egg yolks well, then stir them into the chocolate mix. Stiffly whip the egg whites and then fold them gently into the mixture. Take a 23 cm spring form cake tin with a removable base, line it with a disk of baking paper and lightly grease the sides with butter. Pour in the mixture, put the tin on a baking sheet and bake in a low oven, 150ºC for about 45 minutes. This cake is very fragile. Leave to cool in the tin.
Optional, but recommended: Just before you add the mousse topping, sprinkle over a small glass of Framboise liqueur or another fruit flavour you like. You can also use Frangelico or Amaretto. If you do not use alcohol, you can use a little fruit syrup.
The Mousse
300g plain dark chocolate, broken into pieces - 4 eggs, separated - 300ml whipping cream
For the mousse, melt the chocolate in the same way and allow to cool until lukewarm. Using an electric beater, whisk the eggs whites to stiff peaks. Then softly whip the cream in another bowl until thickened but not as far as soft peaks.
Stir the egg yolks into the chocolate, then fold the cream into the mixture. Gently fold in a quarter of the eggs whites, then the rest, and then spread the mixture over the cake base and keep in the fridge overnight. Release the sides of the spring form tin and using a pallet knife carefully smooth the sides of the mousse if untidy. Very carefully transfer to a pretty cake plate and sprinkle with a little dark cocoa powder and top with a few raspberries or chocolate curls.
Food Fact: Eggs are not bad for you. They are not full of harmful cholesterol and are the perfect source of pure protein. Have a look at the new medical opinions:

11th May 2016
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