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Turning the tables on top chefs

There would be no fly-by-nights here, and no flavour-of-the-month places that may well not be there by the end of the year. You can never be entirely sure, but if you follow your hunches and know your terrain, you have a reasonable shot at being right. (Visit www.sliver.co.za/?p=2125 for more about who won and how Sliver’s Silvers work.)


Bungee-jumping at The Tasting Room

Offering a surprise menu — you have no idea what you’re getting — is the restaurant industry’s equivalent of bungee-jumping. It’s out-there stuff, and pretty exhilarating if you’re prepared to harness up and fling yourself over the culinary edge.


Dining out on the Eat Out award-winners

This dinner is the highlight of the South African foodie calendar and has become a fabulous and very stylish event over the years. But if McCarney didn’t put a word wrong, others did fluff their lines. Eat Out editor Abigail Donnelly did the customary thanking of sponsors, including ‘Wild Cock’, quickly correcting herself while the audience convulsed. Wild Peacock may never live that one down.


The Common Room replaces Ici

A new breeze has shuffled through Le Quartier Francais at Franschhoek where owner Susan Huxter and chef Margot Janse have tweaked the premises of the former Ici and revitalised it as The Common Room, a place where Franschhoek locals (and visitors) can hang out.


Franglikaans and a touch of Italy in Franschhoek

In that quiet that follows, there is the sound of a poor kid from the wrong side of the tracks badmouthing his girlfriend. On a pavement corner there is a trio of coloured boys singing in perfect harmony, with a hat at their feet, while bands of tourists march by unseeing, with their eyes on the next gourmet thrill.


A cure for those who don’t like their fish entirely raw

The chef came out before a particular course and explained, somewhat nervously, that the kingklip was to be served raw tonight. Riiiiiiight, we muttered, dubious, looking left and right as if wondering where the candid camera was.