Superb views, a variety of international flavours and warm service await.
With an ever-growing string of wine farm restaurants in the Cape, it’s not easy to decide which are worth a visit. After enjoying a leisurely lunch at Longtable Restaurant at Haskell Vineyards in Stellenbosch a few Sundays back, we can safely say it deserves a trip, not least for its exquisite vineyard views, welcoming atmosphere and the interesting array of flavours and cuisines on the menu.
Clichés aside, the outdoor seating at Longtable Restaurant is quite literally a stone’s throw from the vineyards. Whether you’re dining at a table inside (with floor-to-ceiling glass windows) or you take a seat on the terrace, the views are spectacular! The atmosphere is relaxed – and while this is not a highbrow establishment, it does not fall short when it comes to high-quality food, wine and service.
A chef’s philosophy
Led by the Silwood Kitchen-trained former head chef of Babel restaurant, Cornelle Minie, Longtable prioritises sustainability and seasonality. Locally grown and organic fruit and vegetables, sustainably sourced seafood and a strict no-plastic and minimum-waste policy are part and parcel of the overall experience.
The menu is made up of various small-plate offerings, separated into cold dishes, hot dishes, and desserts, of which you can order two, three or four plates per person (and extras as individual plates). This setup allows room for choice: on hotter days, you can opt for cold dishes that won’t leave you feeling full, or you could do a meal of just desserts, if that’s your preference…
Cornelle’s style is contemporary and we love the way she boldly fuses various cuisines and flavours in one dish – for example, Asian-style ceviche; Mexican slow-roasted pork belly taco; and Turkish-pressed lamb shoulder. We were blown away by the goat’s-cheese-and-lemon ravioli!
As for the winelist, Haskell Vineyards produces two ranges: the flagship Haskell range and the Dombeya lifestyle range – both of which pair beautifully with the dishes on the menu. Our waitron Bianca Karamba, who is studying to be a sommelier deserves special mention. Not only did she take great care of us throughout our meal, she judiciously paired each of our dishes with the perfect wine.
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