SPRING EVERYDAY GOURMET – EQUUS RESTAURANT AT CAVALLI ESTATE
What I truly love about Cape Town, is our proximity and access to world class Wine Farms and the culinary excellence that will surprise and most often reward the curious palate.
So lucky then that The Foodbuzz was once again invited to the contemporary yet relaxed Cavalli Stud Farm nestled alongside the boastful Helderberg Mountain Side between Stellenbosch and Somerset West on the R44.
The estate is owned by the Smith Family with Lauren Smith being at the helm as Operations Director, horse lover and curator of all things beautiful for the estate. She is also an Architect and assisted in designing the incredible estate. I love asking staff about their boss and when chatting to the Sommelier, Waiter and Tasting room attendant, they all had glowing commentary on Lauren saying how hard she works, how she puts in the long hours, is friendly, courteous and knows all staff by name. A feather in anyone’s cap running such an extensive operation.
Our main destination on the estate was the award winning Equus restaurant which scooped the prestigious Eat Out Style award and from the moment you enter there is no doubt as to why.
Sleek modern lines on the inside of the restaurant with a majestic copper bar centering the room.
From the inside of the restaurant you are teleported to the flowing outdoor deck which is equally tasteful in a setting that makes you feel so pampered and spoiled with the unobstructed views of the Helderberg Mountain range and the voluptuous layout of the fauna and flora that wraps around the unrivalled water feature which anchors your view.
The staff at Equus is by far a large part of their success as they are well informed, tastefully attired and friendly to boot. Our waiter spoiled us by arranging a delicious alcohol free Mocktail for this mom to be before I even asked for it and I am embarrassed now to say I cant remember his name but his excellent service we certainly won’t forget
We were equally lucky to once again encounter the expert guidance of Equus, sommelier, Farai Magwada as he assisted Garth in making the best possible wine pairings for his meal.
and speaking of meal, boy were we in for a treat…..from the kitchen of Chef Calum Anderson ex Singita at Sabi Game Reserve we were about to sample the newly launched Spring Everyday Gourmet Menu download here cavalli_spring_menu_2016
My starter was the Du Toitskloof trout, a deliciously seared rainbow trout served in a Mediterranean style with olive tapenade creme fraiche and confit tomato. A generous portion but lovely and light, it certainly got my tastebuds going.
Garth selected to have the duck starter and he loved the sticky asian glaze with the fresh salsa, the duck was tender and the flavours subtle and complimentary.
For his main, he selected the Springbok, the flavours were concentrated and intense and the succulent red meat incredibly tender and perfectly complimented by the apricot chutney.
I selected the Pork belly as my main and it was delectable. Tender pork with a crispy side of crackling and served with a malaysian curry (Laksa) sauce.
The grilled seasonal garden vegetables, the perfect accompaniment. Light, delicious and homegrown, we thoroughly enjoyed the brightly coloured aromatic veggies.
Even though I missed the parmesan crusted potato wedges from the previous menu, the crispy roasted rosemary potatoes that took it’s place was a welcome replacement.
For dessert, it was tough going to select from the yummy choices on Chef Calum’s menu but we persevered and made the not so tough chocolate laden choice centered by the pistachio sponge and hazelnut ice cream. A decadent triumph with scrumptions honeycomb bits.
We also shared the strawberry cheesecake with rose geranium jelly which was heavenly, creamy and just yummy. Though initially not too sure how the pairing with the shortcake was meant to compliment the cheesecake, the marriage of the two components in the mouth was all I needed to be convinced.
The meal was perfectly completed with a scrumptious peanut butter filled macaroon. Elegantly positioned on beautiful stone shaped serving platter.
We then headed down to the basement where the beautifully appointed wine tasting room awaited us.
We were served by the most gracious attendant, John aka Ray Charles. He was helpful, knowledgeable and had a great sense of humor.
The tasting room is cosy, luxurious and romantically lit.
The owner’s private whiskey room with other amazing souvenir paraphenalia.
A selection of the Estate’s finest wines – names all inspired by the stud farm equestrian theme.
Another exciting and slightly hidden feature in the basement is the world class Cavalli Gallery, housing the Smith family’s private collection which include a few sought after Pierneef paintings and also featuring some talented local artists.
The estate also houses the owner’s extensive Springbok memorabilia collection.
and so all good things must come to an end, we headed back home but with every intention of sounding this luxury estate’s beacon as loud as possible.
Note: We enjoyed our meal compliments of Cavalli Estate, the pictures and views on this review are our own.
Cavalli Wine and Stud Farm
Strand Rd (R44) Somerset West
(021) 855 3218 (9am – 5pm)
(087) 022 0320 (9am – 5pm)
021 855 3218 (choose option 1)
Source: The Food Buzz – SPRING EVERYDAY GOURMET – EQUUS RESTAURANT AT CAVALLI ESTATE