September 26, 2019

The sun sets over the ocean, then rises in the valley with new opportunity

DEN ANKER

There can be no better place to enjoy the golden hour and best view of the harbour and mountain than from Den Anker in the V&A Waterfront. It was my pleasure to accompany friends from Botswana and the UK there for a long, leisurely lunch. As we sat down we were brought some crispy-tempura prawns and seared tuna with a piquant wasabi mayo, a perfect start to an enjoyable afternoon. I enjoyed the goats’ cheese, pear and walnut salad before getting order envy for the kingklip and pork dishes served to my friends. Then the crispy-fried fish in beer batter arrived, as good as the view.

Renowned for their Belgian beers (and seafood dishes, like their mussels), congrats must also be given for their ‘Gold’ in the Diners Club Wine List awards this year. They have more to celebrate – 25 years of success in this landmark position – not a small accomplishment, a milestone reached through constantly striving for excellence.

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TINTSWALO

Tinted by the blue hues of the sea, and frequented by swallows you may wonder? No, the name Tintswalo is a Xitsonga word meaning ‘Mercy’ in English. This beautiful property, which almost owns a prime piece of the Atlantic Ocean, has been at the mercy of fire, twice. Re-opening for business next week after a seven-month closure to repair the damage of a kitchen fire that ravaged the main section, it will now be for the exclusive enjoyment of guests, operating as a private lodge.

We gathered at sunset with fellow writers to see the restoration and to admire two of the rooms, Sicily and Zanzibar. Each of the 10 island-style suites, and the two-bedroomed villa, have been individually designed in the style of exotic islands. Décor has been managed by owners, mother-and-daughters Gaye Corbett and Lisa Goosen, hands-on and ocean-inspired.

After sipping cocktails and wines and nibbling on canapés, we were invited to participate in a Tintswalo tradition, to make a wish by casting a pebble into the ocean with a throw of positive energy.

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INCOGNITO

The Alphen Boutique Hotel in Constantia has transformed the former Rose Bar into the perfect spot for any occasion, from a romantic date to a wedding. Retractable glass doors ensure that you may feel at one with the verdant garden, but when I went it was a day for admiring the view over a roaring fire. Welcomed with a glass of bubbly, I started to unwind after a whirlwind week. We were spoilt for choice, all of the signature and classic cocktails are appealing, but our charming waiter convinced me to try the special, a delectable grapefruit, gin and tonic cocktail. Drinks were interspersed with tasty snacks – the fish tacos with lime and chilli getting my vote, but only a notch ahead of the crispy calamari, chicken sliders and goats’ cheese croquettes. The DJ started to play my favourite music, and I then considered making this my favourite end-of-week place. Incognito of course…

Join them in raising a glass at their first birthday on International Gin & Tonic Day, Saturday 19 October, from 3-10pm. The cost is R195pp, and bookings are essential..

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OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS

The Gourmet Guide is the brand that we are most proud of, another rewarding aspect of our work at Jenny Handley Performance is our training for brand performance. This includes working with teams and individuals, mostly in the restaurant industry, developing brands by developing people. Working as part of a dynamic, passionate team is a privilege. Allow me to share this opportunity…the views here too are spectacular!

EXECUTIVE CHEF POSITION: If you are at heart a country chef who loves nature, with a flair for contemporary country cooking, then you may wish to relocate to the tranquil valley of Stanford. It is here that Manor House Restaurant has made a name for itself, offering refined dining that satisfies, served with aplomb and generosity. Join a small, nurturing team that truly care about every visitor. On-site accommodation is part of the package. For enquiries, please contact Elsabe Nauta: elsabe@stanfordvalley.co.za.

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