Known for superior wines and a breathtaking view, the restaurant at Haute Cabrière has had new life injected into the menu. The kitchen was taken over by chefs Nic van Wyk and Westley Muller in November 2016. Working closely with the cellarmaster, Takuan Von Arnim, the chefs have created new dishes that complement the estate’s wines.
The menu is a refreshing departure from the classic French fare for which Cabrière was once known. Expect a compact menu with strong Mediterranean influences and a hint of South African flavour. The gourmet duo’s menu might offer bold options like braised octopus with smoky paprika, fresh pasta and chorizo, or crumbed pork cheek terrine with chakalaka and baby pickled onions, both of which are superb options for starting your meal. Crispy coriander lamb rib with peas and mint or the kataifi-wrapped goat's cheese sound like delicious alternatives for the less adventurous palate.
For the main event, a melt-in-the-mouth malt-braised short rib arrives with a crispy potato galette and rich glossy jus, fork tender and moreish. The addition of charred leeks and nettle cream complements the flavours of the rich beef, making for a pleasing dish.
The venison loin is a masterful combination of impeccably cooked venison and a study of onions: a smoky onion jus, red-onion tart and onion soubise. Surprisingly, each preparation of the vegetable added a different nuance to this well-executed dish. Also on offer is also a duck pie with cherry jus or steamed kingklip with coconut cream and fresh turmeric.
Finish off the meal with a rhubarb-and-guava crumble with yoghurt ice cream, a light and fruity way to end a meal. The decadent glazed chocolate mousse with Cointreau and dark-chocolate ice cream is a chocolate lover’s dream.
The menu will not disappoint and can be enjoyed as a two- or three-course option. The six-course tasting menu (‘the marriage of food and wine’), created with the cellar master, promises and immersive experience of Haute Cabrière wines.
Guests can enjoy all the wines from the estate at cellar price, with options like the Pierre Jourdan blanc de blanc and Haute Cabrière chardonnay pinot noir being firm favourites. Other wines from Franschhoek are now featured on the menu, allowing you to pair one of your regional favourites with your meal.
Personable and rather relaxed, the staff make you feel right at home.
The cellar-turned-restaurant is dark and cosy inside, which is perfect for winter or a romantic meal. If the weather permits, the terrace beckons with its sweeping views of the valley. The tables on the terrace are protected with shade cloth to further allow you to enjoy long lazy lunches. Reservations are essential during peak season.
Haute Cabrière now offers a Sunday feast menu, allowing your table to enjoy the bounty of a generous Sunday lunch. Expect a starter; roast beef, venison or lamb; duck-fat-roasted potatoes; and an array of delicious sides. A glass of wine is also included, and the feast is finished off with dessert.
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