Young gun chef Ash Heeger has finally revealed Riverine Rabbit to be the name of the new restaurant she’s been planning to take the place of erstwhile ASH on Church Street in Cape Town. Based on the touchstones of honesty, family and sustainability, the much-anticipated revamped restaurant will open its doors this October.
This new venture is the brainchild of chef Ash and her sister, Mandy van der Berg. Fans can look forward to bold and creative flavour combinations, local art, natural light and greenery. Much like the former ASH, Riverine Rabbit is intended to be an upmarket fine dining experience but the emphasis will be less on formality and more on food ‘prepared with passion, served with heart and enjoyed in comfort’.
Why the name? The riverine rabbit is an indigenous animal found in the Karoo, which is facing near extinction as a direct result of human behaviour. “This brings about a sense of something close to home, and how we need to protect it,” explains Mandy. “For us, it’s not just a name. It’s a showcase of what we as a brand want to achieve.” That is, educating clientele on sustainability. Ash continues, “We have a responsibility to sustainability. As a brand, we have a platform from which to inspire others to tread lightly and leave something worthwhile behind.”
There’s only a couple of tickets left for my cooking demo with @gingerandlimect this coming Saturday so if you want one then you better shake your cake! Lotsa food. Lotsa wine. Lotsa banter. Ticket link in my bio. In the meantime, here is a photo of me expertly blue taping a menu onto the kitchen pass that is in no way related to anything above.
Included in the new restaurant offering is an intimate Chef’s Table experience, which will give guests an exclusive look into how the kitchen works and time to interact with Ash. “It’s a cosy and unique experience and gives us a chance to try new dishes, and have guests be a part of the process while savouring on something delicious at the same time.”
Since renovations began in June this year, the team has found inspiration around the world and spent time sourcing local materials and commissioning artists to create the new look and feel.
Riverine Rabbit opens in October 2018 with a short three-course offering, a five-course reduced tasting menu, and a seven-course dégustation, paired with carefully selected wines. Watch this space for more.