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Margot Janse explores tasty Tanzania

Recently our executive chef, Margot Janse went on a culinary field trip to Tanzania with two small farm cooperatives supported by a Dutch bank. Margot explored Tanzania’s cooking culture with visits to a dairy farm, picking coffee with the local experts, bike rides through endless fields and she even joined in on a rural Tanzanian cooking class followed by lunch – all this and so much more. Here are some snapshots from the trip.

margot 1

margot 4

margot 3

margot 5

margot 2

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Margot Janse, Travel,
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Margot Janse heads to CHEFstock 2014 in London this September

“Four star chefs, three unique dinners, one stylish setting – Alyn Williams presents CHEFstock 2014”

chef stock

“We’re cooking with sour figs, baobab, marula nuts and fynbos,” says Chef Margot Janse of The Tasting Room. “We’re introducing Africa to London! I haven’t cooked with Chef Alyn Williams before—and I’m very excited to do so.”

How does CHEFstock work? For three Tuesdays in September, Chef Alyn Williams will pair up with an internationally renowned chef (or chef duo) in his eponymous Michelin-starred restaurant at The Westbury ‘to create an extraordinary one-night-only dining experience’.

Margot will be joining Alyn in his kitchen on 9 September 2014 and has been billed as ‘The Queen of South African Cuisine’.

Also on the culinary line-up are: Chef Paul Ainsworth hailing from the U.K as well as brothers , Chefs Peter and Jonray Sanchez-Iglesias from Bristol.

Guests will arrive to a champagne reception paired with canapés crafted by both chefs on the night, and then be seated in the rosewood-accented dining room for eight courses from the one-off collaborative tasting menu – four courses from each chef, with ‘a few surprises along the way!’

Alyn Williams said: “I’m very proud to once again be hosting such a spectacular line-up of chefs this September. I admire every one of these chefs and it’s very humbling that they are coming to cook with me in my kitchen. When it comes to the menus there are no rules, the guest chefs are in charge and each tasting menu will take its own shape with our different yet harmonious dishes.”

CHEFstock 2014 tickets cost £200 per person and includes all food, wine and Champagne. Book early to avoid disappointment, contact reservations on 020 7183 6426 or email  alynwilliams@westburymayfair.com

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Margot Janse, The Tasting Room, Travel,
comment-notesComments: 0


  

Things that go on in the kitchen #1

What’s this?
“It’s fermented butternut for the wild herb soup,” says Margot Janse, referring to a dish from The Tasting Room. “It also has butternut toffees.”
Hanging with the butternut is a bag of grated Jerusalem artichokes, also fermenting.
And this?
“Oh, that’s an experiment.”
How does it work? The chefs simply add a small percentage of salt, and the vegetables do the rest.

What’s this?

“It’s fermented butternut for the wild herb soup,” says Chef Margot Janse, referring to a dish from The Tasting Room. “It also has butternut toffees.”

Hanging with the butternut is a bag of grated Jerusalem artichokes, also fermenting.

And this?

“Oh, that’s an experiment.”

How does it work? The chefs simply add a small percentage of salt, and the vegetables do the rest.

butternut

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The Tasting Room ranks on S.Pellegrino World’s 100 Best Restaurants!

The World’s 50/100 Best Restaurants were announced last night in London’s Guildhall in a dazzling ceremony fit for the culinary elite.

The Tasting Room was honoured with position 72.

team

“We’re delighted to be featured once again on this prestigious list,” said Susan Huxter, owner of Le Quartier Français. “It’s wonderful recognition and it reflects the dedication of Chef Margot and her entire team.”

Executive Chef Margot Janse has consistently shown she can compete with the very best in the gourmet gauntlet. Chef Margot has maintained a spot on this celebrated list since 2002; in 2010 she was notably the only female chef to achieve a place in the World Top 50.

margot-2013-cauli-1.jpg.1024x0

The Tasting Room has been a recurrent competitor on the world-renowned list. In 2011, The Tasting Room took the 36th spot as well as the title of Best Restaurant in Africa and the Middle East. In 2012, the trend continued with 56th position and in 2013, 53rd .

By now the knowledge that The Tasting Room is one of the world’s best restaurants comes as no surprise, yet the innovative cuisine doesn’t play by the same rules.

Surprise and nostalgia take centre stage at the fine dining restaurant in Franschhoek. Diners embark on a journey of taste, guided by culinary story-tellers in the most beautiful and whimsical of settings.

Surprise: an emotion that occurs when something breaks our habitual pattern.

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Awards, Le Quartier Français, Margot Janse, The Tasting Room,
comment-notesComments: 0


  

Margot Janse & Red Balloon Revolution

Margot Janse & Red Balloon Revolution celebrate 1500 lives of underprivileged children in Franschhoek. Celebration Day: 22nd of April 2014, Franschhoek South Africa.

Red Balloon

“Every life is worth celebrating,” says the Red Balloon Revolution.

Through the great work of Dutch-born top chef Margot Janse—The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français in Franschhoek is rated as one of the best restaurants in the world—Red Balloon Revolution was introduced to the wonderful work of The Kusasa Project.

The Franschhoek non-profit organisation encourages a brighter future for underprivileged children by facilitating academic, sporting and life skills development. And, with the help of Margot Janse and her foundation Isabelo, the children of Kusasa now receive a healthy meal as well as an egg a day. (The egg had been especially added for its protein content, which is necessary for brain development.)

Red Balloon Revolution and Kusasa want to let 1500 children of three Franschhoek schools know that their lives are worth celebrating.

On 22nd of April every child will receive a Red Balloon gift bag teeming with products to celebrate life. Among the many items, there will also be a journal to inspire the children to have a positive outlook for their future, a wish card with tomato seeds to plant, a toothbrush, soap and so on.

To finance this project, The Red Balloon Revolution has developed a wide range of products: from a children’s clothing line and ceramics to iPad sleeves and key chains.

These high quality products have been handmade in Africa by empowerment projects, which help create employment for women in townships.

On the products, look for a Red Balloon—a symbol for freedom and happiness, which are the two core values of the Red Balloon Revolution.

For more information on the programme and products of Red Balloon Revolution go to www.redballoonrevolution.com or contact
Jitra Janssonius Sinselmeijer Cell:+27 (0) 72 9835231 Email: jitra@redballoonrevolution.com
Sophie Vos Kooistra Cell: +27 (0)72 2836307 Email: sophie@redballoonrevolution.com
Le Quartier Français: Margot Janse Tel: +27 21 876 8441 Email: margot@lqf.co.za

For more information on the programme and products of Red Balloon Revolution go to www.redballoonrevolution.com or contact Jitra Janssonius Sinselmeijer Cell:+27 (0) 72 9835231 Email: jitra@redballoonrevolution.com Sophie Vos Kooistra Cell: +27 (0)72 2836307 Email: sophie@redballoonrevolution.com Le Quartier Français: Margot Janse Tel: +27 21 876 8441 Email: margot@lqf.co.za

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Isabelo, Kusasa Project, Le Quartier Français, Margot Janse,
comment-notesComments: 1


  

The World’s Most Creative Chefs

Margot Janse has been named one of the ‘World’s Most Creative Chefs’ by for Air Private Jet magazine. We happen to agree! In this article our talented Executive Chef is in the company of greats, such as Massimo Bottura and Alex Atala. See the full article below.

Air Private Jet Magazine

Air Private Jet Magazine

78-83_AIR Gastronomy_ Feb-3

Posted by: Sue Huxter
Posted in: Margot Janse, Press, The Tasting Room, magazine,
comment-notesComments: 0


  

An opportunity to make a difference

The festivities for the Cape Wine Auction kick off today! See the full program of events here. And, tomorrow is the official Auction: a glamorous lunchtime affair at Delaire Graff Estate in Stellenbosch.
‘Margot Janse will lead a culinary team to present a stunning, but relaxed lunch to wile away the afternoon. Music, art, theatre and some of the greatest South African wines poured by the winemakers themselves will keep you entertained’.
This will be followed by the auction: ‘an opportunity to make a difference’.
View our exciting lot here! You’ll also be able to bid online.
Want to know more? Check out this interview we did with Mike Ratcliffe.

The festivities for the Cape Wine Auction kick off today! See the full program of events here. And, tomorrow is the official auction: a glamorous lunchtime affair at Delaire Graff Estate in Stellenbosch.

‘Margot Janse will lead a culinary team to present a stunning, but relaxed lunch to wile away the afternoon. Music, art, theatre and some of the greatest South African wines poured by the winemakers themselves will keep you entertained’.

Cape Wine Auction

This will be followed by the auction: ‘an opportunity to make a difference’.

View our exciting lot here! You’ll also be able to bid online.

Want to know more? Check out this interview we did with Mike Ratcliffe.

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Charity, Le Quartier Français, Margot Janse,
comment-notesComments: 0


  

Inside The Tasting Room kitchen

The Tasting Room: the place where executive chef, Margot Janse, works her special kind of magic with her team of dedicated chefs. The domain of surprise.  of local flavour. of adventure. Have you ever wondered what it’s like inside the kitchen? Wonder no more.

We can’t show you the dishes in detail – because, well, they’re a surprise – but we can show you the beautiful kitchen, The Tasting Room’s culinary playground. To see what went into creating the kitchen, jump on over to this post.

Margot Janse plating

Margot Janse plating

Ain't it pretty?

Ain't she pretty?

Precision and imagination make for exciting plating

Precision and imagination make for exciting plating

Expediting

Expediting

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kitchen

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Le Quartier Français, Margot Janse, The Tasting Room,
comment-notesComments: 1


  

Margot Janse featured in Jamie Magazine

Deck the halls with the festive issue of the Jamie Magazine (U.K )! Margot Janse is in a special feature, where the magazine asked ten of their favourite chefs for their top places to spend the holiday season. Scroll down for the article below, and check out the magazine’s website for some great Christmas cooking tips.

Jamie Magazine Dec Issue 2013 MJ-1

Jamie Magazine Dec Issue 2013 MJ-2

Jamie Magazine Dec Issue 2013 MJ-3

Posted by: Susan Huxter
Posted in: Margot Janse, Press & Media,
comment-notesComments: 0


  

Margot and Neil dish on each other

Both of our restaurants have been nominated once again for The Eat Out Awards. This marks the second time both Bread & Wine and The Tasting Room have appeared on the Top 20 nomination list concurrently – but that’s not all, that year, 2007, both restaurants made it onto the Top 10 Restaurants too! The Tasting Room garnered the number one spot, and Bread & Wine came in at number four!

And, not only are both Margot Janse (The Tasting Room) and Neil Jewell (Bread & Wine) great chefs, but they’re also great friends.

Margot and Neil making bacon together for a story in Good Taste Magazine

Margot and Neil making bacon together for a story in Good Taste Magazine

How long have you been friends?
Neil: Before the grey hair, circa 1999. It was my first service at Bread & Wine, I had been in the country for about 4 days, and some guy comes walking into the kitchen: I’m looking at him, with a ‘who are you and what are you doing in my kitchen glare’. I greet him and he introduces himself as Richard Friedman which means nothing to me at the time (turns out he is Susan Huxter’s brother).

Margot, coming out of the walk-in fridge with a handful of ingredients, catches the exchange and proceeds to collapse laughing, dropping what she had in her hands, onto the floor.

Margot: I remember when Neil and Tina came for their interview. I showed him my very small walk-in fridge and Neil had a little flip out over all our beautiful fresh herbs. I couldn’t believe it, he came from London after all… But he was right! Our produce is and was then already bloody amazing.

Soon after we had one of our very famous chefs and winemaker get-togethers. And, Neil,  after many glasses of wine, wagged his finger and said he was determined to make everything he was going to serve at Bread & Wine himself.

I told him I would love to eat ‘lamb ham’, and so it all began!

Neil is best at…
Margot: PIG! Then being humble and staying enthusiastic.

Margot is best at…
Neil: Thinking on her feet, and being cool under pressure.

Margot’s favourite ingredient is…
Neil: It’s not cauliflower…

Neil’s favourite ingredient is…
Margot: Ummm, PIG?

Describe Margot as a chef in three words
Neil: Determined, gifted, curious

Describe Neil as a chef in three words
Margot: Honest, focused, wicked



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