Haute Cabriere 0.0 rating based on 1 rating1 Review 0 Visitor Photos + Pass Road (R45), Franschhoek 7690, South Africa 27 021 876 3688 http://www.cabriere.co.za/ firstname.lastname@example.org Haute Cabriere Cuisine: Bistro, Contemporary, European, French, Vegetarian Good for: Dinner, Lunch, Reservations
You can’t help rooting for Haute Cabrière: the wine farm, which looks out over the Franschhoek valley (and I mean...
You can’t help rooting for Haute Cabrière: the wine farm, which looks out over the Franschhoek valley (and I mean the whole valley – it’s magnificent,) produces some fantastic wines. The Haute Cabrière Chardonnay Pinot Noir is easily one of my favorite wines.
And yet, my experience of the restaurant was a little disappointing – it lacked that je ne sais quoi that distinguishes an excellent restaurant from one that is merely good.
The problem doesn’t lie with the setting or décor. The terrace affords you panoramic views of the valley, and the restaurant itself is quite remarkable. Glinting chandeliers give the large stone room a glamorous air and a sizeable fireplace keeps diners warm in winter. Almost as good as the view outside is the view inside the restaurant over the Pinot Noir Barrel Maturation Cellar below.
The food – and this is really where the disappointment set in – is a bit of a mixed bag. The potato and truffle soup we had for starters was glorious. It was well-seasoned, flavors and textures were delicately balanced, and it was creatively garnished. My main course, however, was greasy, bitter and only vaguely resembled the dish on the menu. A so-called mushroom-and-cheddar gnocchi dish should not cause so much confusion! The cheese platter at the end of the meal was solid, but nothing spectacular.
Part of the problem may be that while the items on the à la carte menu are accompanied by thorough descriptions, the items on the chalkboard – which formed part of the daily special – are not. Unfortunately, the waiters, who appeared to be somewhat distracted, did little to explain the dishes and in a couple of cases got things blatantly wrong.
The à la carte menu is a touch on the pricey side, but the daily special – R210 for a three-course meal without wine – was quite reasonable. One of the advantages of the à la carte menu is that most of the dishes, which are designed to complement Haute Cabrière wines, can be ordered as either a full or a half portion. The restaurant also has a Haute Cabrière Vintage Tasting Menu – a six-course meal that introduces you to different wine styles and vintages.
Disappointed as I may be, I am still rooting for the restaurant at Haute Cabrière: that potato soup starter was good enough for me to consider giving it a second chance.
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