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
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