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Celebrity chef Pete Goffe-Wood is leading the culinary charge after the transformation at Grande Roche Hotel. The all-new Viande signals the major changes in store since Hansie and Theresa Britz acquired the hotel. It’s a nose-to-tail affair, a homage to the animal and its meat in all its glory.
Start with tapas at the bar, sinking into one of the plush armchairs next to the fireplace on a cold and wet Cape afternoon. The starters are a carnivore’s dream, ranging from clear bone broth served with winter vegetables to home-smoked line fish with a fennel and citrus salad and a delightful tarragon salad cream, and chicken liver parfait with brioche and home-made pickles – to name but a few highlights. For the daring, there’s also the crisp lamb’s tail and brain with a sauce gribiche.
The slow-roasted pork belly, one of the options for mains, is perfection – joined on the plate by roasted maize cubes on a corn and maple glaze. The touch of sweetness added by the glaze complements the richness of the meat, with the crackling (all hail the crackling) snapping then melting away in your mouth like a crispy biscuit. Staying true to his vision, the chef offers pan-fried calf’s liver with roasted beetroot and horseradish beignet.
The Instagram-worthy ice cream sundae consists of a decadent chocolate mousse, home-made vanilla and chocolate ice cream scoops and chocolate brownie chunks, generously drizzled in caramel. On colder days, opt for the warm lemon curd cake, artfully presented with custard, vanilla ice cream adorned with fudge flakes, lemon cream and crème fraîche.
Drinks at the bar is a must. An extensive wine list, favouring the Paarl region, features wine by the glass from the Under Oaks range. For the connoisseurs, a special collection from the chef’s cellar is available. A bottle of 1988 Klein Constantia Vin de Constance, perhaps?
You’re immediately made to feel at home and comfortable. The suggestions from the menu were spot-on and the service was attentive, prompt and thorough.
The chef has stated that he wants noise and laughter. When filled with large dining parties, enjoying their food at long tables and the help of three crackling fires, the ambience at Viande will certainly aid in fulfilling his wish.
That lunch with your meat-loving friends that lasts a lifetime.
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