It has been almost a year to the day
since we last visited Bellgables.
Guests were welcomed with a cup of steaming Gluhwein,
on this perfect Highveld evening,
The last time we visited, the art gallery was not open.
This time it was, and it houses a rather eclectic collection of works.
And this space set the tone for what was to come for first - time visitors
A full moon over Muldersdrift...
The "magic" that is Bellgables,
lies behind this unassuming entrance.
Without whom the "room" would not function.
Her smile alone is well a visit to this fine dining establishment.
On that note, I have to compliment the wait-staff.
They quietly and efficiently got about their allotted tasks,
adding yet another layer to our dining experience.
Well done to them all!
When last did you have a butter dish like this on a table.
And, more importantly, butter that you can use immediately
as it is not frozen?
My primary school principal had a saying:
"Good better best, never let it rest, till the good is better and the better best"
And it certainly seems that Chef Patron, Errol Gobey lives by that axiom.
The decor is constantly changing.
We ate in this private dining area on our last visit,
it has been totally revamped.
No two table settings are the same.
And although there is a lot of "decoration" on the tables,
they do not seem overcrowded and there is plenty of room for the food.
The almost overwhelming decor adds a layer to the dining experience.
This is NOT a restaurant of uniform white table linen
and "run-of-the-mill" crockery.
It is a venue that engages all the senses.
The interesting mix of guests leads me to believe that diners
do not come here to be seen.
They come to enjoy the atmosphere, food and ambiance.
I like the fact that these small trophies have been repurposed
and now contain a variety of condiments.
Every nook and cranny has SOMETHING in it.
And all spotlessly clean and dust free...
Having a "lemon" type of week?
A visit to Bellgables will certainly turn that into lemonade.
Within all the hustle and bustle,
there are quiet areas...
like this seating area in the bar.
But are they plain and uninteresting?
Certainly not...look at the window dressing.
This is the coolest place in the restaurant...
and I really mean cool.
Not quite room enough to have a meal in,
but a great space to "hang out" in
on a hot summer day.
Annemarie Faca serenaded guests during the evening.
She has a wonderful voice that served as an unobtrusive backdrop to the meal.
And THIS was the menu...
and what a menu it was!
It was a first for both my wife and I
as we have not been to a wine pairing evening before.
As I don't drink, it was up to her to comment on the wines.
This is what she had to say:
"I am not a wine expert. although I do I enjoy the occasional glass.
What was on offer complemented each dish well,
and was pleasing to the palate.
I particularly enjoyed the Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot."
Tomato based shrimp, mussel and calamari soup
with a sparkle of Cognac served with croutons.
This was paired with KC Rose"2014".
The soup was delicious, with enough seafood to open an aquarium.
I really felt like doing an "Oliver" and asking for more...
The home made bread that accompanied the dish was most tasty
Not actually a "starter" if you count soup as the first dish.
Salmon trout roses.
Smoked salmon trout wraps with cream cheese.
Lemon & dill stuffing garnished with lumpfish.
Klein Constantia Sauvgnon Blanc "2014"
I really enjoyed this dish.
The tomatoes were perfect and the combination
of the salmon trout, cream cheese and lumpfish was superb.
Spicy Beef Crepe
Cubes of fillet, olives and herbs wrapped in a crepe
topped with a Ranchero sauce & pecorino cheese.
Paired with KC Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot "2012"
There are not enough adjectives to describe the flavour explosion of this dish.
The combination of the interior of the wrap
and the exterior topped with pecorino was not what I was expecting,
and the combination was a taste sensation
There was a small ramekin of vegetables served alongside the wrap.
As with the previous two dishes, the portion size perfect.
Classic creme brulee infused with grenadilla pulp.
The final wine of the evening,
Klein Constantia Brut Methode Cap Classique "2012".
A traditional way to end of a most memorable meal.
Mathew Day, the first wine maker I have ever met,
hosted the wine portion of the evening.
Although he is young wine maker (by his own admission)
those who tasted his creations during the evening
were unanimous in their praise.
My wife,Carolyn, with Chef Patron of Bellgables,
Errol does not serve "fast food" and courses are served with sufficient time
in between to allow diners to savour and enjoy each dish.
A visit to Bellgables makes for memorable occasion that will be remembered
long after the final morsel has been consumed.
To find out more about what Bellgables offers,