Happy days at Babylonstoren

This isn’t really the place that I dedicate time to restaurant reviews, but rather my week’s inspiration with the help of some restaurant or chef experiences. And I was very inspired indeed at the weekend after a visit to a place that makes me sincerely happy. Babylonstoren is remarkable at doing just that.

Everywhere you look, whether it’s at The Green House (winner of the Boschendal Style Award at the 2012 Eat Out DStv Food Network Restaurant Awards), the bakery, farm shop, cheesery or Babel restaurant, it delivers oohs and aahs.

From the pink oyster mushroom hand-made dinner plates and the gorgeous blue printed paper that’s used to wrap rustic loaves of bread – baked around whole leeks so that their leaves and roots protrude – to the delightful lemon soufflés baked in French glass jars.

The magical garden also leaves you enraptured and full of new ideas: piles of hay bales entwined with strawberry plants; the fine, long, Asian snake beans; the juicy mangoes, galangal, kiwis; and the tree tomato branches groaning with their abundant fruit.

I was intrigued by the hibiscus buds growing in the glass house, together with the pineapples and white current tomatoes. I’ve seen these buds preserved in thick crimson syrup and dropped into glasses of bubbles, and I have no doubt that, on my next visit, this crop will be on sale for just that.

Babylonstoren is truly a magnificent place. Whatever season or time of the year you visit, there’s a sense of sharing and you leave with a breath of fresh air.


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