Archive for July, 2013

Companion Fare in August!

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013
This year our Companion Fare special was a great success. And, well, since there’s one more month of winter left we’ve decided to do it three more times in August!
Dates:
Thursday, 01 August
Tuesday, 06 August
Wednesday, 07 August
What is the Companion Fare ?
Join us for dinner in the award-winning Tasting Room have your partner’s dinner on us. Indulge in the 8-course African inspired surprise menu and your partner’s dinner will be complimentary, excluding drinks. Pay R 770 for your dinner and your companion’s exact same dinner is on us* Gratis!’  (Gratuity not included)
- For an affordable accommodation option check out our Delicious Hotels: the chances are high you’ll want to sleep over after your gastronomic adventure!

This year our Companion Fare special was a great success. And, well, since there’s one more month of winter left we’ve decided to do it three more times in August!

Dates:
Thursday, 01 August
Tuesday, 06 August
Wednesday, 07 August

the tasting room

What is the Companion Fare ?
Join us for dinner in the award-winning Tasting Room have your partner’s dinner on us. Indulge in the 8-course African inspired surprise menu and your partner’s dinner will be complimentary, excluding drinks. Pay R 770 for your dinner and your companion’s exact same dinner is on us* Gratis!’ (Gratuity not included)

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Why drive when you can sleep over? For an affordable accommodation option check out our Delicious Hotels: the chances are high you’ll want to sleep over after your gastronomic adventure!

Wildlife of the Winelands Research Experience

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

We’re working on an exciting new experience for our guests: tracking the Cape leopard! The graceful animal once populated the mountains in the winelands in great numbers, though now diminished, the leopard still continues to prowl at night, through fynbos, over rocky outcrops in search of prey.

our tracking ground

Join the Cape Leopard Trust’s Boland-based researchers, and spend a ‘day at the office’ with them as they search for signs of the elusive Cape mountain leopard and other animals that share their world.
The day starts with morning coffee at Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards and a short presentation by the researchers explaining their work in the Boland area. Learn how to recognise a leopard ‘spoor’ as well as the tracks and signs of other fascinating animals.
This is an opportunity to get a real insight into the challenges facing animals living on the fringe of urbanisation, to discover the diversity of mammals in the Boland, to understand the ecology of the Cape mountain leopards and to see why tracking a leopard requires patience, perseverance and perfect practice.

The official blurb: ‘Join the Cape Leopard Trust’s Boland-based researchers, and spend a ‘day at the office’ with them as they search for signs of the elusive Cape mountain leopard and other animals that share their world.

The day starts with morning coffee at Leopard’s Leap Family Vineyards and a short presentation by the researchers explaining their work in the Boland area. Learn how to recognise a leopard ‘spoor’ as well as the tracks and signs of other fascinating animals.

This is an opportunity to get a real insight into the challenges facing animals living on the fringe of urbanisation, to discover the diversity of mammals in the Boland, to understand the ecology of the Cape mountain leopards and to see why tracking a leopard requires patience, perseverance and perfect practice.’

leopard

Linda Coltart, our GM, recently went on an excursion that saw her ‘leopard crawling’, inspecting the big cat’s kill sites and camera traps as well as simply enjoying the wild beauty of the Boland mountains.

We caught up with Linda, to find out what the experience entailed:

Tracking a leopard and remotely downloading data
A number of leopards in the Boland mountains have been fitted with GPS radio collars. Through various radio signal we picked up a leopards presence almost immediately. Tracking the animal entails driving and hiking through its known territory until the radio signal is detected. If the signal is strong enough, another handheld antenna and a downloading unit can be used to remotely communicate with the collar to download stored data.

The idea of this project is to obtain research information and the likelihood of actually spotting a leopard is almost zero.

Finding leopard feeding sites
With the help of the GPS data we located 5 feeding sites.  We joined the researchers on a hike (mostly off-trail through dense natural vegetation – bundu-bashing and leopard-crawling was the name of the game!) to the pinpointed location on the map. Arriving at the site we helped the researchers to systematically search the area to locate any evidence of prey remains (eg. hair or bones) or leopard scat which we then be collected.  At the 5 feeding spots we found 1 porcupine, 1 baboon and 3 grysbok

Checking and servicing camera traps
There are a number of remote-sensing cameras deployed in the Boland mountains. Participants will have the opportunity to switch memory cards and put in fresh batteries and then go through the photos obtained by the camera trap – and hopefully a spotted cat will pop up on the screen—and with my experience it did! On two of the cameras we saw very recent sightings.

A very big thank you to Anita and Jeannie for allowing us to share in very special and beautiful day, I felt very privileged.

For more photos from the day, head over to our Facebook page.

Join Vanie Padayachee at Leopard’s Leap

Friday, July 26th, 2013
Join Vanie Padayachee at Leopard’s Leap
This August, chef Vanie Padayachee is taking her ‘Cooking with Spices’ class to Leopard’s Leap. Offering two opportunities to take part on Wednesday, 14 August 2013 (Evening Class and Dinner) and Wednesday, 21 August 2013                    (Morning Class and Lunch), this is not to be missed if you want to learn the secrets of spice from this master Indian chef.
Join The Spice Guru, on a journey of tempering and blending spices while she shares a few of her family secrets and recipes. Born and raised in Durban, her insatiable interest in food started whilst watching her parents, both great cooks, preparing exotic Indian dishes for family gatherings. Her cuisine is also strongly influenced by the rich diversity of cultures found in SA.
Using local and seasonal produce you will be grinding, blending, chopping and cutting spices to stir up a colourful and fragrant Durban Chicken Curry, Indian Fried Bread (Roti), light and fluffy Basmati Rice, Fresh Tomato Sambals and Cucumber Raita.
The cooking classes take place in the state-of-the-art Leopard’s Leap kitchen, which accommodates 22 students per class. Each student has his/her own cooking station, with individual stove and utensils. Large-screen television sets give a clear picture of the chef’s instructions and techniques, while each student receives a printed recipe to apply the newly acquired cooking skills at home. Duration is approximately two hours per class.
Meals are complemented by Leopard’s Leap wines best suited to the food prepared, as selected by Leopard’s Leap Cellarmaster, Eugene van Zyl.
For more information visit www.leopardsleap.co.za/experience/cooking-classes/
Book your spot for R650.00 per person
Contact: 021 876 8002 or cooking@leopardsleap.co.za

This August, chef Vanie Padayachee is taking her ‘Cooking with Spices’ class to Leopard’s Leap. Offering the opportunity to take part on Wednesday, 14 August 2013 (Evening Class and Dinner), this is not to be missed if you want to learn the secrets of spice from this master Indian chef.

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Join The Spice Guru on a journey of tempering and blending spices while she shares a few of her family secrets and recipes. Born and raised in Durban, her insatiable interest in food started whilst watching her parents, both great cooks, preparing exotic Indian dishes for family gatherings. Her cuisine is also strongly influenced by the rich diversity of cultures found in SA.

Using local and seasonal produce you will be grinding, blending, chopping and cutting spices to stir up a colourful and fragrant Durban Chicken Curry, Indian Fried Bread (Roti), light and fluffy Basmati Rice, Fresh Tomato Sambals and Cucumber Raita.

cooking with spices

The cooking classes take place in the state-of-the-art Leopard’s Leap kitchen, which accommodates 22 students per class. Each student has his/her own cooking station, with individual stove and utensils. Large-screen television sets give a clear picture of the chef’s instructions and techniques, while each student receives a printed recipe to apply the newly acquired cooking skills at home. Duration is approximately two hours per class.

Meals are complemented by Leopard’s Leap wines best suited to the food prepared, as selected by Leopard’s Leap Cellarmaster, Eugene van Zyl.

For more information visit www.leopardsleap.co.za/experience/cooking-classes/

Book your spot for R650.00 per person. Contact: 021 876 8002 or cooking@leopardsleap.co.za to make it happen.

We’re potty for these pans

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

This Tuesday was The Tasting Room’s first service since we’ve renovated the kitchen. See a sneak peek of the new look in the picture below. We’ll be releasing more images soon!

new kitchen

Our glorious new  kitchen was designed by our executive chef, Margot Janse, beautiful quartz counter tops by Silestone and our incredible builder made it all happen- Karin, a hands-on creative.

And to cook with? Le Creuset of course!  The Shallow and Deep Le Creuset Toughened non-stick Frying Pan is a dream to work with. It’s not only versatile, but aesthetically pleasing too.

Toughened Non-Stick is a sleek range of versatile pans perfect for everyday use.  It has a tough,
PFOA-free non-stick surface inside and out, and a special hardened body to create a durable and
long-lasting pan that can be used on any heat source.  The easy release non-stick interior and
exterior surfaces are easy to clean, and are tough enough to withstand use of metal utensils.
Professional-style cast handles are attached with stainless steel rivets for a superior, secure fixing.
Heat resistant glass lids are available separately.  They retain moisture and flavour, and allow you
to check the food you are cooking without lifting the lid and disturbing the cooking process or
temperature.
Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick pans are manufactured from premium materials that will provide
the best in durability and cooking performance
Each pan is made from heavy gauge, forged aluminium that has been specially treated to provide a
strong, toughened finish that will withstand the demands of everyday use.
Each pan spreads heat evenly and efficiently, so there are no hot spots in your cooking
The specially constructed base incorporates a magnetic, stainless steel disc that provides extra
strength and stability to the pan and makes it suitable for use on ALL HEAT SOURCES including the
latest induction hobs
Both the interior and exterior of each pan are finished with one of the most modern, PFOA-free,
toughened non-stick finishes available providing superb release of food and easy cleaning – every
day.  It is an ideal surface for healthier cooking with very little oil or fat.

Gamme Sauteuse Provençale

All you need to know about The Toughened Non-Stick range:
It has a tough, PFOA-free non-stick surface inside and out, and a special hardened body to create a durable and long-lasting pan that can be used on any heat source.  The easy release non-stick interior and exterior surfaces are easy to clean, and are tough enough to withstand use of metal utensils.

LC

Professional-style cast handles are attached with stainless steel rivets for a superior, secure fixing. Heat resistant glass lids are available separately. They retain moisture and flavour, and allow you to check the food you are cooking without lifting the lid and disturbing the cooking process or temperature.

Le Creuset Toughened Non-Stick pans are manufactured from premium materials that will provide the best in durability and cooking performance. Each pan is made from heavy gauge, forged aluminium that has been specially treated to provide a strong, toughened finish that will withstand the demands of everyday use.

Each pan spreads heat evenly and efficiently, so there are no hot spots in your cooking. The specially constructed base incorporates a magnetic, stainless steel disc that provides extra strength and stability to the pan and makes it suitable for use on ALL HEAT SOURCES including the latest induction hobs.

Both the interior and exterior of each pan are finished with one of the most modern, PFOA-free, toughened non-stick finishes available providing superb release of food and easy cleaning – every day.  It is an ideal surface for healthier cooking with very little oil or fat.

Bread & Wine’s new menu

Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013

Bread & Wine has just re-opened with a brand spanking new kitchen. The entire operation was gutted and refurbished, and fitted with high-end inductors and cooking appliances, including a Big Green Egg for grilling and smoking.

But what would a new kitchen be, without a new menu? Featuring dishes such as, ‘Waygu topside with smoked potato gnocchi’ and ‘Duck and foie gras pot pie with sweetcorn pap’… it’s a winter winner!

menu

iBook – an amazing way to self publish

Friday, July 19th, 2013

Do you have a cookbook inside of you that’s raring to get out? Maybe even a comic book. Whatever ever genius is clamouring to get out – this amazing app, can help you do it, so that it’s chic, swift and smooth.

We’re talking about the iBooks Author for iPad - and it’s free!

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To get you started quickly, there are lots of Apple-designed templates that merely require you to add your own text and drag and drop images. To add interactive photo galleries, movies, Keynote presentations, 3D objects and more, there are simple widgets which make things very easy indeed. To check how your book is looking, you can preview it on your iPad at any time although note that you’ll need iBooks 2 installed on your iOS device to do this.
The widgets are one of the outstanding features of iBooks Author. They enable you to add everything from a photo gallery to a Keynote (Keynote ’09 v5.1.1 or later) presentation and can be easily identified in your Table of Contents. You can also add a voice-over to make it easier for sight-impaired readers to read your books.

“To get started simply choose on of the Apple-designed templates that require you to add your own text and drag and drop images. To add interactive photo galleries, movies, Keynote presentations, 3D objects and more, there are simple widgets which make things very easy indeed.”

Cape Brewing Company

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

We’re thrilled to announce we’ve gone local with the beer-on-tap at our new bar. And by local we mean 25 minutes down the road at The Cape Brewing Company!

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Situated on the slopes of Paarl Mountain on Spice Route, the farm is comprised of many craftsmen, from chocolate that’s been made from bean to bar, to fynbos grappa, and of course plenty of wine. CBC, as it’s known, makes craft beer from the purest ingredients and with water from the estate’s own mountain spring.

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Our team was recently treated to a beer tasting at the state-of-the-art brewery in preparation for us opening our new bar and lounge; and we were looked after the brewer himself, Wolfgang Ködel, and brand ambassador Scott Kelly, so a big thank you to them!

The range of beers is simply outstanding, and we’re very proud to be offering this incredible local product in our bar.

We highly recommend a tutored tasting  at the Cape Brewing Company, a delicious journey peppered with interesting facts as well as history, coupled with a tour of the modern brewery.

Feast on Four of Franschhoek’s Fabulous

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
17 July 2013
Feast on Four of Franschhoek’s Fabulous
Get ready Johannesburg, on 24 August 2013, the hidden secrets of Franschhoek will literally be laid out on a table for you to discover.
Feast on Four of Franschhoek’s Fabulous will take place in The Pudding Shop; the name was inspired by a 1960s restaurant in Turkey, ‘a meeting place for hippie travellers’—and now in much the same spirit this eclectic eatery in in Parktown North provides the platform for the meeting of great foodie minds.
The intimate gathering ( a limited amount of tickets will be available), will feature the ‘Charcuterie King’, Neil Jewell from Bread and Wine Vineyard Restaurant,  French cheese guru Lodine Maske from Fromages de France & La Cotte Inn Wine Sales, superlative wines presented by Dane Friedman from his family estate Môreson, and Michael Macaskill with his premium coffee, Terbodore Coffee Roasters.
Think feast; groaning platters of rustic food, decanters of wine and the spirit of discovery and sharing. Though this isn’t any ordinary gathering—be prepared to be transported into another world. Perceptions will be challenged. Without giving away too much of the mystery, the surreal journey through Franschhoek’s Fabulous begins with one of Neil’s creations: egg, bacon and chips served in a glass.
Neil, the recent recipient of Eat Out’s Paddock Award for Best Produce, is a master of his craft. Expect artisan charcuterie made from pasture-reared pork, as well as sophisticated country cuisine—that’s as honest as it is contemporary. Partnered with French cheese by local Franschhoek legend, Lodine (her family have lived in the town since 1945), and with Môreson wine to match, served in generous decanters for bounteous feasting.
Terbodore Coffee will be woven through the spread in a variety of ways, from coffee salt to coffee-smoked vermouth.
Don’t be late for this very important date—the lunch kicks off at noon sharp, and the feast starts exactly on the hour.  Prepare to plunge into a foodie wonderland, without formal structure or tutored tastings, the feast will flow, with all four of the main components complementing and elevating one another.
Mysterious, delicious—this is your invitation down the rabbit hole, and for a ticket price of …, you’ll wake up as if from a dream, wondering just like Alice if it really happened at all.
Tickets: R450 per person, please email Linda Coltart on linda@lqf.co.za
* Due to the nature of the products being used, guests are advised they must eat pork and French cheese, and also drink wine, as the chefs are unable to compensate for dietary requirements.

Get ready Johannesburg, on 24 August 2013, the hidden secrets of Franschhoek will literally be laid out on a table for you to discover.

Feast on Four of Franschhoek’s Fabulous will take place in The Pudding Shop; the name was inspired by a 1960s restaurant in Turkey, ‘a meeting place for hippie travellers’—and now in much the same spirit this eclectic eatery in in Parktown North provides the platform for the meeting of great foodie minds.

neil-clayton-2010-002

The intimate gathering ( a limited amount of tickets will be available), will feature the ‘Charcuterie King’, Neil Jewell from Bread and Wine Vineyard Restaurant,  French cheese guru Lodine Maske from Fromages de France & La Cotte Inn Wine Sales, superlative wines presented by Dane Friedman from his family estate Môreson, and Michael Macaskill with his premium coffee, Terbodore Coffee Roasters.

Think feast; groaning platters of rustic food, decanters of wine and the spirit of discovery and sharing. Though this isn’t any ordinary gathering—be prepared to be transported into another world. Perceptions will be challenged. Without giving away too much of the mystery, the surreal journey through Franschhoek’s Fabulous begins with one of Neil’s creations: egg, bacon and chips served in a glass.

Neil, the recent recipient of Eat Out’s Paddock Award for Best Produce, is a master of his craft. Expect artisan charcuterie made from pasture-reared pork, as well as sophisticated country cuisine—that’s as honest as it is contemporary. Partnered with French cheese by local Franschhoek legend, Lodine (her family have lived in the town since 1945), and with Môreson wine to match, served in generous decanters for bounteous feasting.

Terbodore Coffee will be woven through the spread in a variety of ways, from coffee salt to coffee-smoked vermouth.

Don’t be late for this very important date—the lunch kicks off at noon sharp, and the feast starts exactly on the hour.  Prepare to plunge into a foodie wonderland, without formal structure or tutored tastings, the feast will flow, with all four of the main components complementing and elevating one another.

Mysterious, delicious—this is your invitation down the rabbit hole, and for a ticket price of …, you’ll wake up as if from a dream, wondering just like Alice if it really happened at all.

Tickets: R450 per person, please email Linda Coltart on linda@lqf.co.za

* Due to the nature of the products being used, guests are advised they must eat pork and French cheese, and also drink wine, as the chefs are unable to compensate for dietary requirements.

Bread & Wine’s new kitchen!

Friday, July 12th, 2013
Today our family restaurant, Bread & Wine opened its doors for the first time after some very big and exciting changes in the kitchen!
The entire operation was gutted and refurbished, and fitted with high-end inductors and cooking equipment, including a Big Green Egg for grilling and smoking and CookTek equipment.
The very first bread baked in the new kitchen

Today our family restaurant, Bread & Wine opened its doors for the first time after some very big and exciting changes in the kitchen!

The entire operation was gutted and refurbished, and fitted with high-end inductors and cooking appliances, including a Big Green Egg for grilling and smoking.

 The very first bread baked in the new kitchen

The very first bread baked in the new kitchen

A sauce already bubbling on our new CookTek!

A sauce already bubbling on our new CookTek!

The Big Green Egg

The Big Green Egg

Head on over to Facebook to see more photos of the transformation.

The pocket lifesaver

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013
The pocket lifesaver
This amazing new smartphone app can literally save lives. Echo112 is a free app that sends your location to local emergency services, worldwide. The ultimate safety net for travellers, not matter where you are on the globe—as long as there’s cellphone reception.
How does it work?
In case of emergency, you activate the app by pressing the SOS button echo112 will know which country you are in and will select and call the correct emergency number. Your position is transmitted to the emergency operator who will be able to see where you are

This amazing new smartphone app can literally save lives. Echo112 is a free app that sends your location to local emergency services, worldwide. The ultimate safety net for travellers, not matter where you are on the globe—as long as there’s cellphone reception.

iphone5

How does it work?
In case of emergency, you activate the app by pressing the SOS button echo112 will know which country you are in and will select and call the correct emergency number. Your position is transmitted to the emergency operator who will be able to see where you are.

Download it here, or go to your app store.