June 23, 2020

A fine Father’s Day weekend

Gourmet Guide

A FINE FATHER’S DAY WEEKEND

It was a real ‘hygge’ weekend, roaring fire, my lap covered by a cashmere rug and my cat – exactly as dreamt about when compiling the Winter (hygge) edition of the Gourmet Guide online mag which launched 1 June. I am delighted that the response and engagement of this issue has broken all records of previous editions. If you have not yet read it, remember it is yours, free, to download, print or share.

Free magazineFYN LOCKDOWN NIGIRI

Our weekend kicked off on a high note with the FYN Lockdown Nigiri personally delivered by Jennifer Hugè, GM and partner of the FYN trio. Chefs Peter Tempelhoff and Ashley Moss have excelled themselves. Added to our order was a bottle of special sake to be paired with eight pieces of nigiri, each offering its own adventure, delicate and refined. A wide selection of fish from wild-caught kabeljou and lean yellow fin tuna, to katonkel, yellowtail, sea bream and ocean trout gently nestled on premium-grade Koshihikari rice from the Ishikawa Prefecture in Japan. Each piece was slowly savoured and the additional flavours, from caviar and aioli to chilli

and coriander, perfectly appreciated. One of the most vital ingredients of a special meal is conversation, and the quality of the ingredients, presentation and experience elevated ours, along with fond memories of eating sushi of this standard in Japan.

Visit the Fyn online shop, take a virtual visit to Japan and drool…

 

NOBODY DOES IT BETTER

I have always rated the Belmond Mount Nelson high tea, which has the classical components of a world-class high tea, modernized with aplomb. I had wondered how they could effectively recreate the unforgettable experience that they offer in the pink lady, but chef Rudi Liebenberg and pastry chef Craig Hibbert have waxed it. They have been creative yet practical, choosing an array that can sit tight during delivery and any possible delay. It was up to us to set up the crackling fire, appropriate music and the family Spode Byron tea set (I did, after all, marry my husband for this crockery and his mother’s ice-cream recipe…!).

Father’s Day and the winter solstice were therefore celebrated in our own living room. With aplomb. Careful planning had gone into this and every detail perfected – decked out in their masks with hand sanitizer on hand, Craig and F&B Manager Johann Badenhorst, delivered white boxes tied in pink ribbons. There were loud oohs and aahs as we opened the array of savoury and sweet delicacies and then debated in what order to enjoy. Our younger son is blessed with a gargantuan appetite and his girlfriend with a sweet tooth, so we knew that as a foursome we would do justice to every aspect of the treat. The mushroom epanada, pasture-reared roast beef roll with tomato chutney, delicate finger sandwiches, curried chicken pie and spinach and feta quiche become lunch. We took a little break before starting on the sugar high and distinctive teas, each item more delicious than the last. From the featherlight eclairs to a cheesecake milk tart, then an opera cake and citrus delice – before devouring a pecan nut tart with passion fruit and a coco-nib tuille. We took another break before scones, which with homemade mixed berry jam and cream, meant that there was no way we could do justice to the biscuits or petit fours.

AFTERNOON TEA IN YOUR LIVING ROOM

I’m writing this with my last cup of tea made from the loose-leaf tea duo delivered (with biscuits). The exclusive Belmond Mount Nelson hotel tea is blended from six African and Asian teas, flavoured with buds and petals from their trademark pink roses. The SA orange and spice tea, a tangy bled of Rooibos with cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, vanilla and orange, is equally memorable. This Father’s Day memory will live on. My favourite memory of my dad is about how he loved his tea, especially the second cup out of the pot. The ritual was important, and of course, it was always served in pot, with a tea cosy, and drunk out of a cup and saucer. After enjoying his first cup he would, in anticipation of being offered a second, gently rattle his cup on its saucer until I hopped up and obliged.

A SHOW OF GRATITUDE

I highly recommend this as a treat or gift. Order by noon on a Thursday for your delivery in the City Bowl/Atlantic seaboard area on Saturday/Sunday (delivery fee of R45). At R340 per person it is extremely good value.

Your tea too can live on – for every tea ordered the BMN will donate six hearty homemade soups meals to Extreem Kwizeen’s ‘Soupathon’ for the homeless. Coming soon – zoom into a tea call with their tea sommeliers to chat about the best way to brew and enjoy the teas – with a background music playlist curated by their resident pianist Henry Dike. restaurantreservations.mnh@belmond.com

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