Friday, October 30, 2020

Restaurant Month tapas supper at Bouchon

Friends told us about the Restaurant Week special at Bouchon in Hout Street so we made a reservation for 7pm last Friday. It's a Tapas/wine bar place, very friendly and it has a wine cellar because Dorrance wines are made there. The special is three Tapas and a dessert for R250 pp. And we had such a great meal; we do recommend that you book and try the special before the end of the month. The prices seem very reasonable if you have to go after that; you can see their menu on line. Bouchon shares premises with Christophe Durand's Dorrance winery - the only winery in central Cape Town
French graffiti on the wall near the entrance comes from the winery's owner:
Drink some wine, you will have friends
This sentence is a double entendre:
Le vin d'ici est meilleur que l'au-delà = Wine from here is better than death
Le vin d'ici est meilleur que à l'eau de là = Wine from here is better than water from there
The working wine cellar. All the Dorrance wines are on the wine list in the restaurant, plus some others. Prices are good

The restaurant as we arrived; we were followed by many other guests. The tables are spaced nicely apart
The good thing is the restaurant filled up to nearly full. It has a lovely vibe, and we were by far the oldest people there, a great young crowd

We were in the centre of things and could see the Pass

The restaurant menu. There are so many fantastic choices that we think we'll have to return to try others
Page Two. We did have a concern about the size of the dishes; our friends had assured us that we would be very satisfied
And we were. There are four dumplings to a serving and one Bao; Lynne asked
And the desserts looked good
The Dorrance Rosé was indeed a great choice as it is lighter than a red, but has some red notes when it needs to
and it did go with every dish we had. It has raspberry and rhubarb on the nose and palate
Minerality, some salt, fresh and zingy fruit, and warmth on the end. R179 a bottle. You can have wine by the glass as well
We chose two different dishes to start the meal that were perfect as entrées, and we shared them
This is the melting baked camembert, a local cheese we recognised and it was stuffed with bacon and gently fried onions

The other was the Pork Rillette, a very generous portion with the same accompaniments. The Rosé shone with this well made version of paté and reminded us of eating this in France. We are always surprised how rarely we find rillette on menus here, or in supermarkets, it is so normal in Europe to buy a tranche for enjoyment at home. R80. Accompanied by lots of sourdough bread and good pickles. R88

The restaurant also has a foreign wine list and these are some of the bottles on show. Some rather good wines there
Christophe Durand imports several French wines and other beverages

For our next course we decided to have what each of us wanted and not share. John loves mussels, Lynne not so much
and he really enjoyed this small but beautifully flavoured dish

Lynne chose the King prawns, which the menu said came with roasted lemon, and a sherry and garlic sauce. She was astounded at the size of the prawns, the biggest she has ever had in a restaurant. And the sauce was marvellous, very hot and spicy with chilli so more like a Peri Peri. You do have to get involved to remove the shells to get at the tender prawn meat and they do provide extra napkins and a finger bowl. The prawns are butterflied and perhaps would be nicer if not cut in half? When you go, do have these prawns, they are outstanding and the bread helps to mop up all of the buttery sauce afterwards. R95 and worth every cent

John's third tapas dish was Ocean trout on a bed of squid ink linguine with garlic & chilli, baby spinach, pea shoots and confit tomatoes. We were beginning to get rather full at this stage, so John didnt quite manage all the linguine. Lynne tasted it and it was very good pasta. In the past she has not enjoyed this pasta because of very strong flavours of the squid ink, but this was perfect. R85

Lynne's last dish was Panko crusted baby squid with saffron mayo and a roasted lemon. Sadly a bit of a disappointment and not quite what she was anticipating. The batter was heavy and claggy inside instead of fairy light and there was very little squid within. R82

Dessert time: We both had the really wicked Chocolate brownie with vanilla ice cream. It has all sorts of different textures and dark chocolate flavours: biscuity, chewy, cookie dough, solid chocolate and a chocolate sauce. Hints of a chocolate liqueur? Very sweet and filling but really moreish. Do try it

The bill showing the restaurant special price. Many thanks to our lovely waitress Nikki. And the other service staff who looked after us so well

All content © John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus

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