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2015 Boschendal Style Award nominee: Equus Dine at Cavalli

Our final nominee for the 2015 Boschendal Style Award is last year’s winner, Equus Dine at Cavalli, located in Somerset West. This Winelands restaurant boasts striking architectural design that is combined with warm elements to create a luxurious yet comfortable space. Here’s why Equus at Cavalli deserves its nomination again this year.

The dining area at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

The dining area at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

The space

This sleek restaurant is situated on the picturesque Cavalli Wine and Stud Farm, which acts as a gorgeous backdrop to the contemporary design of the space. The grand Italian architectural design has been awarded for being one of the greenest in the country.

The copper bar at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

A view of the copper bar at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

South Africa’s Green Building Council gas has recognised the restaurant for using geothermal energy of the dam for heating and cooling, as well as solar energy and a waste-water treatment plant to recycle 93% of the estate’s water. Through these methods Equus Dine accentuates the natural surroundings.

The finer details

Designed by the architectural team of Bouwer Architects and Lauren Smith, the contemporary stone, steel and glass structure is inspired by the estate’s sustainable values. The idea behind the interior was to bring the indigenous Cape floral kingdom landscaping indoors.

The foyer at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

The foyer at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

Says Lauren Smith, MD of Cavalli Estate, “The priority is to elevate the architecture through interiors that are comfortable and practical but still imbue the space with a sense of luxuriousness that is not ostentatious.” Elements of timber, copper and tan mock-leather serve to soften and warm the space while striking features as the shape of the custom-designed bar, palm swivel chairs by Arper, and locally manufactured modern oak tables add a contemporary atmosphere. The attention to detail flows from the furniture to the lighting designed by Italian group Marset and Foscarini. The rustic-style crockery is locally made by Cape Town ceramist Diana Ferreira, adding an extra flourish to the beautifully plated food.

The terrace at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

The terrace overlooking the Winelands hills at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

The food

Headed by chef Hylton Espey, the approach to the cuisine is modern and draws inspiration on the landscapes and flora of the area. Heritage, nostalgia and sunstainablity are evident in every dish, and the team forages daily in the heirloom garden for seasonal ingredients. Standout dishes include coriander-cured venison with chakalaka, Everson’s-Cider-braised pork belly and sustainable seafood with pickled-fish onions.

Does Equus Dine at Cavalli have what it takes to win the 2015 Boschendal Style Award? We’ll find out at the 2015 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards on 15 November. Stay tuned to see our other nominees.

Line fish at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

Line fish at Equus Dine at Cavalli. Photo courtesy of the restaurant.

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