Sometimes, one forgets that food is an art and a meal can be a performance.
I graduated and, of course, we need to celebrate in style!
We were all dressed in our best, and so that meant we needed somewhere to go that would be worthy of our outfits.
We had decided that La Colombe – placed 7th on the list of the World’s Best Restaurants at the TripAdvisor Travelers Choice Awards in 2017 – would be perfect!
Perfect doesn’t even begin to describe the meal we had. Honestly, it was probably the best meal I have ever/might ever have in my entire life…
There were 6 of us that needed to get from the graduation to the restaurant. This meant we would be taking my dad’s Land Rover Defender. He had spent the entire weekend cleaning it so as to avoid having to do paperwork. (I would have done the same.) We all hopped into the sparkly(-ish) truck, and headed towards La Colombe at Silvermist. As we passed through the gates and followed the tangled road that led to the hidden restaurant our eyes fell upon the beautiful Constantia Valley.
It was hard to believe such a magical place was only a few minutes drive from our home.
As we walked into the restaurant, grey chairs wrapped around each snowflake-white table. It was as if someone had discovered a hidden treehouse and brought in the modern furniture – what more could we have hoped for?
We were given a little starter upon entering – a teaser to what was to come. This ball may have seemed little – but the fragile sphere popped in the mouth and released an entire host of flavours. From this moment – we knew we were in for a treat.
Us ladies each ordered a glass of sparkling wine that arrived along with the sourdough, cheese breadsticks with dehydrated olives, pork lard as well as a special slice of gluten free bread just for me.
Next, we were onto the tuna starter. The way in which the waiter placed each tuna can and almost danced the lid off in front of us – made the presentation of the dish like a performance in itself. It is unbelievable how much flavour these chefs are able to pack into a tiny personalised La Colombe tuna can. This was also the only course that was not explained to us as the chef wanted us to explore the flavours on our own. Boy, did we explore! Even my dad (who has this magic ability to breath food in) savoured every bite.
We then had the choice of the wagyu or the prawn. At this point we were all regretting choosing the shorter menu over the full. Discussions on who was going to get what took place so that we could each snag a taste of both courses. The wagyu looked like a little forest with tiny mushrooms sprouting along the way. The prawn – sitting like a proud star on a stage of swirled homemade mayonnaise, snoek dressing, sweet bread and a host of other components – looked as if it could be sitting in an art gallery.
If there is one thing Masterchef has thought me – it’s that a scallop is extremely difficult to prepare. Of course, our scallops with glazed sous vide pork belly, sweetcorn and spiced coconut was to-die-for. They were perfect.
High up in our tree house – who knew that more magic would come. We noticed ‘mist chambers’ (as we dubbed them) floating past us and we each took a turn to guess which course it would be. The palate cleanser arrived and the magical mist chamber flowed all over the table making us feel like we had entered another world.
The performance continued as we noticed little egg shells holding the sorbet and watermelon cubes. Naturally, we each had to take a turn to pose with our cracked eggs.
Our food journey continued as it was time for the main course! Linefish for some and lamb for the others. The amount of effort that goes into twisting each vegetable and piping each sauce is actually unbelievable. On top of that, they replicate each dish to look exactly the same.
Finally, it was time for my favourite part! A pineapple and white chocolate themed dessert.
At this point we needed some coffee to help settle the big bellies.
Petit fours – cloud like marshmallows and exploding salted caramel chocolate balls – were the final act.
The meal was truly spectacular and the service was impeccable.
I even received a signed menu from the Chef Proprietor Scot Kirton with a line that truly reflects on our experience.
The restaurant sits at the top – literally and physically – and I wish for anyone with a passion for food to have the opportunity to experience such a spectacular performance.
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