Thursday, August 23, 2018

New vintage of De Wetshof Limestone Hill Chardonnay launched at Upper Bloem Restaurant, Green Point

An invitation from De Wetshof to the launch of this year's Limestone Hill Chardonnay. The launch was held at the recently opened Upper Bloem restaurant which, rather confusingly, is nowhere near Upper Bloem Road in Bo Kaap, but is on Main Road in Green Point, near the Stadium. This is a new venture for Chef Henry Vigar and his wife Mari, who have been very successful with their restaurant, La Mouette in Sea Point, where they played a great part in re-establishing Sea Point as a place to eat

We arrived just as everyone was entering the restaurant after tasting the wine on the terrace in front
The 2018 De Wetshof Limestone Hill.  It is the top seller of the six De Wetshof Chardonnays and is unwooded.. Limes and lemon blossom perfume on the friendly nose with some brioche, butter and jam hints from the lees. A good prickle on the tongue; the wine is fruity and rounded with citrus, apple, white peach and a little tropical hint, followed by some nice soft chalky tannins and minerality. It is MENU's wine of the week. R95 on the farm
Saying hello to Johan de Wet as he joined our table
PRO Emile Joubert gets the ball rolling as he introduces Johan 
Chef Henry Vigar and his wife Mari, who is in charge of the front of house. They want to showcase Cape food, and the nostalgia of it. It will be happy food, from the terroir of the Cape
Johan de Wet, CEO of De Wetshof wines. He told us that they learned a lot about the vintage and the vineyards this year. In the drought, they found that they can put more stress on the vines. It is a winemaker's vintage, with very healthy grapes. They thought that the wine would not be good, then suddenly, two months ago, the wine turned around, showing minerality, fruit and friendliness
Chef André Hill, who will run the restaurant for Chef Henry under his supervision
The menu. The food is served tapas style; all plates are for two people sharing
The bread plate: Rotis with fishy seaweed butter and very smooth smoked snoek paté with seeded samosa crisps and a teriyaki glaze
A signature starter of Chef Henry Vigar's is different flavoured croquettes or bitterballen. These are Boerenkaas, crisp on the outside, meltingly warm cheese inside, topped with shaved radish and an apple purée, with the teriyaki glaze
Onion shells filled with a Cape Malay pickled aubergine and caramelised onion chutney, topped with pomegranate aruls. Lots of spice and heat in an onion shell!
Chef plating up in on the pass
Happy Chef!
Working with the Beef Carpaccio
Pink and tender naked beef - au naturel
Roasted, caramelised sweet butternut with fennel, shaved coconut, a roasted seed mix and herbs. So well cooked, must copy for future dinner parties
The carpaccio of tender beef, fully dressed with very creamy roasted beef, agar agar mayonnaise, pickled baby mushrooms, nasturtium leaves and grated cheese. The beef had been briefly marinaded
Oh boy! An all time favourite when they are cooked like this. Triple cooked duck fat potatoes with Muizenberg sour figs, curry sauce, burnt Swiss chard and a bhadji crumb
Lamb neck biryani with toasted pistachio nuts and grains, pomegranate and dried herbs. Not pretty to look at, but a joy to eat. Tender lamb and flavourful rice. Might look better in a bowl
The dessert plate for two: Classic Koesuster donuts coated in coconut with a coffee cream, baby toffee apples, almond and pistachio nut clusters, topped with chocolate - a lovely mouthful and  frozen naartjie (clementine) curd with curry leaf. And a coffee for John
Johan de Wet and Mari Vigar
and for the birthday boy, Peter de Wet, some cup cakes
Winemaker Peter looking a bit overwhelmed
A lovely refreshing wine, a great lunch, a place to visit again soon. We can encourage you to try it

No comments: