This is pure escapism; a world of tiny forks, whimsy and beauty just for the sake of it. Chantel Dartnall’s dishes are inspired by Mother Nature, with thoughtful missives penned by the chef on each, exploring memory and her worldly travels.
Mosbolletjie dunkers, almost unbearably fresh, are the prelude of the bread accompaniments paired with each course. You’re invited to tear them up and dip them in parmesan cream, the memory of which is enough to make you weak at the knees. Knysna Oysters are served in champagne foam, hinting at the lightness and luxury to follow. In this fantasyland it’s no surprise to see that mushrooms make a regular appearance: in tartlets, in bread, in truffle bombs. To say the mains are accomplished would be an understatement, but this is where to find familiar ground after a series of skilfully plated bon bons and magical mini things.
Halibut is cooked perfectly, with crisp skin laid like lace over the top, and accompaniments of white beans and fennel showcase the purity of flavour and good ingredients. In the perfectly named Under the Veil, a prawn is curled up under a pink hat of hibiscus and complemented by flavours of white peach. Sweet, pure and fresh. The Angus beef is like butter, with exploding spheres of jus, braised tongue and sweetbreads. Umami abounds.
The green fairy makes an appearance, floating in her own botanical holder, before the slices of Comte, trembling and transparently thin, paired with mouth-rounding flavours of toasted seeds, figs and honey.
An orchid made out of delicate chocolate brings to life flavours of tonka bean. The pavlova is tiny architecture; a house of meringue with lemon and marshmallow flowers. And the cheese – oh, the cheese! Your selection of South African and top imported options will include the fudgy, nutty, creamy and tangy. Ask for advice on what to choose from the trolley and you’ll be guided on your cheese dreams. Share slivers of each, going around and around, until every last morsel is gone.
You might see leather-bound tomes of all the vintages in the extensive offering here as part of the décor, but allow yourself to be guided by expert pairings with each course, for enthusiasts or connoisseurs, by award-winning sommelier Moses Magwaza.
Truly wonderful. You feel looked after, but are the welcome recipient of discretion and perceptiveness. The menu, a ribbon-bound booklet, is yours to take home as a memento of the experience you will never forget.
Restaurant Mosaic is like an enchanted castle, where splendour is the only rule. With indoor water, gleaming wood, gold and glass, and the curl of leaf motifs, it’s the fanciest place you’ve ever been, but never stiff. Put away your timepieces and lean in.
An otherworldly adventure.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our full editorial policy here.
My best fine dining experience, to date!
I went with a small group to Restaurant Mosaic last week. It was certainly my best ever fine dining experience.
The food was both visually exciting and full of taste. Some places produce beautiful looking dishes, but they are bland. Not so at Mosaic, every dish had its own, often unique taste and texture. The choice of dishes on the menu made for a 'heavenly' read.
The wine selection was exceedingly large with both fine South African wines and overseas stock. It was a large list but well thought out.
Unlike many fine dining places, the staff at Mosaic were friendly, warm and unpretentious, whilst being very proficient and knowledgeable.
I look forward to going back in three months to enjoy their Autumnal menu.
It’s been the second time and they never disappoint. What an experience and foodie adventure. The food was flavorful, pure art on a plate, the ambience magical and the service friendly, sufficient and prompt.
Chef Chantelle's visit to each table before hand was so welcoming. She’s a master at her craft. A definite must experience!
Was initially very excited to visit one of the few top10 restaurant close to home, but caution to all, the drive to get there was terrifying! Not the safest road in Gauteng as well as not being informed about the gravel part just left me with a bad taste in my mouth to begin with. The restaurant is outdated... which I knew was going to be the case, wasn’t expecting Overture or La Colombe... but, for a restaurant charging these prices, I expect some degree of luxury, bathrooms are sub par and the waiting staff had to warm you about minding you step here, here and here, also mind your head... Was welcomed by the chef, Chantel, and this might have been the highlight of the evening. Sommelier, Moses, recommended an excellent champagne!!! Couldn’t find fault. But for a winter menu with almost all dishes being served cold... was a let down, had the non-alcoholic pairing, one of the better non-alcoholic pairings, but they arrived with a delay of the food, which meant that some went cold. Glasses not being taken away... Coffee was terrible, they should invest in a barista. Also struggled with the music, listening to Édith Piaf song after song, just indicated a lack of time spent on creating a decent playlist. Food was average and the cold temperature of the food didn’t hit the spot, felt as if this was purposefully done to help the kitchen to plate and prep in advance, as I was not able to see or hear a kitchen, also not the case with many of our top10 restaurants, missed not being able to see how my food was prepared... Definitely just a top10 tick off for me and wouldn’t recommend or give it a go again. Just too inaccessible, they try to get you to stay in the hotel... odd, as if they are well aware of the bad road to get there... Felt a bit “Megh”, and I can think about five better restaurants in a 10km radius from me that would have had better service, ambience and warm food.
It was my first time at a proper fine dining restaurant and I was already dealing with everyone thinking I was crazy to spend so much money on a meal but at no point did I feel like it was a waste. The location is so beautiful inside a wildlife conservation area, and as soon as you drive into the hotel you feel special. The food itself was immaculately prepared and served. The whole experience was incredible and I’d definitely recommend trying it.
Chantel and her team have created a little paradise @ The Orient. They've also made food to match.
My husband and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary and spent the weekend feasting on the beautiful, delicious 9 course supper and the three course breakfast the next morning. The service all around was impeccable and we felt completely relaxed and pampered for our entire stay there.
Each dish was superbly presented and tasted even better. The thought and story behind each item is absolutely amazing. I loved how involved the process is behind each menu. The alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink pairings were faultless.
This place is definitely worth a visit. Chantel and her team deserve all the recognition they've been receiving and more. One has to go there to understand the splendor they have to offer. We'll be visiting again in the near future!