Set in a gorgeous Edwardian house in the middle of Melville, NCW’s gorgeous cuisine really is a cut above the rest, showing off chef Ence Willemse’s background from his experience at Roots restaurant as well as with Bertus Basson at the coveted Overture in Stellenbosch.
The menus at NCW change monthly, allowing for variation in ingredients, flavour combinations and creativity according to seasonality and availability of various ingredients. An example of a menu is a silken cauliflower soup served with piquanté pepper ice cream and charred sweetcorn served with hot, crusty homemade bread and butter. Juicy clams with squid ink gnocchi and saffron sauce come next, followed by a rich lamb tagine with cous cous and prunes. A highlight is the quail with nachos and cheese – it’s very cleverly put together and the combination of flavours, textures and ingredients is sublime. For dessert there could be a caramel cake served with pear and salted caramel ice cream, followed by Asiago cheese with dried fruits.
Willemse utilises local ingredients in a faultless, simple, smart way and in clever combinations that tantalise the palate yet at the same time create artistic and interesting plates. It’s a fun and layered dining experience not to be missed.
The Sunday lunch menu is a little more relaxed, although just as exciting and flavoursome.
The wine list is exciting and offers a fabulous selection of wine from South Africa that will suit the meal. You’ll be guided through the list and have the opportunity to try some gems. NCW also hosts a variety of wine-tasting evenings so be sure to watch out for these.
Service is professional and accurate, with attention to detail given from the moment you book until the moment you leave. Booking is easy and may be done via telephone, on social media or via email. Service in the restaurant is subtle and suits the wonderful environment in which are. The hosts are pleasant and professional at all times, as well as educated about the cuisine.
The ambience is definitely a highlight at NCW. The gorgeous old building, fitted with Georgian furniture, old brass door handles and the lovely energy of an Edwardian era gives the space an incredible ambience. The style of the cuisine is well suited to the mood and the energy of the space and the overall experience is great. There’s a large dining room with small spaces unfolding off the wings, creating a fabulous environment for more intimate occasions.
Dinner or Sunday lunch. Also book a space for a party, launch or a conference, as there are great private venues that can be utilised for a special occasion. Look out for wine tastings and other events also hosted at the venue.
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