After a move to an idyllic new location at Silvermist in Constantia, La Colombe has really hit its stride. Chef Scot Kirton was named S. Pellegrino Chef of the Year this year after the restaurant jumped from being a nominee in 2013 to placing second at this year’s Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards. Watch chef Scot Kirton receive the news at the awards.
Linda Scarborough explains what makes La Colombe so outstanding.
Eat Out Chef of the Year Scot Kirton is a master at plating pretty food, and at his new venue in the Silvermist Wine Estate, he’s also taking the opportunity to experiment and add a playful touch. Your first surprise comes in a little can – lift the lid to find a Lilliputian seared tuna tataki inside, their signature dish. Served with spelt-and-oat bread, and olive-parmesan bread sticks with herbed butter, it’s a sophisticated delight.
Other starters might be dishes like a hen’s egg with poached salmon, asparagus velouté, peas and black forest ham; and the undeniably delicious Farmer Angus beef tataki and tartare with coriander mousse, black pepper puff and soft-poached quail’s eggs.
Moving on to mains, the fillet of beef is done perfectly and served with fondant potatoes, caramelised onions and rich roasted cloves of garlic, with a smear of porcini and tarragon purée. An open vegetable lasagne is an unexpected hit, delivering tenfold in terms of taste expectations. Tender sheets of saffron pasta overlay pillows of spinach, all put to bed with a gorgonzola béchamel.
Pastry chef Glen Williams flexes his imagination in the dessert department with a dish of ginger curd, cashew cake, mango sorbet, black sesame brittle and buttermilk. The chocolate namelaka (the creamiest mousse conceivable) with stracciatelle ice cream and raspberries provides a flawless ending.
For a lingering lunch, why not order from a handful of wines by the carafe? You won’t be overwhelmed with information on the page, but the sommelier is happy to explain and assist with suggestions.
Staff are friendly and chatty, but still extremely professional. It seems casual, yet is anything but.
Simply spectacular. Making use of cool whites and its namesake colour of dove grey, La Colombe is like a modern lodge perched on the side of the mountain. Throughout the restaurant you can soak up views of the Constantia valley. It’s relaxed, yet ultra elegant. – Linda Scarborough
“Scot’s dishes display true excellence. His surf-and-turf combinations are world-class, and the petite white anchovy on toast with crispy capers was my umami kick of the day.” – Jackie Cameron