Wine and dine in the Cape

    Wine and dine in the Cape

    Constantia hosts The Cape Wine Auction this March with fabulous food to match SA’s finest wines.

    Constantia will be a hive of activity in March when The Cape Wine Auction returns to the valley. The last auction in the area was in 2016 when it took place at Klein Constantia.

    The American Express Cape Wine Barrel Auction happens on Friday, March 1, at the stunning Norval Foundation, situated on the slopes of the Constantiaberg Mountain, in the heart of the Constantia winelands, with panoramic views across vineyards and mountains.

    Buitenverwachting will be hosting the weekend’s main event – The Cape Wine Auction sponsored by Nedbank Private Wealth – on Saturday, March 2.

    This year, the menus for both auctions are being prepared by the renowned Annalize Catering headed up by Annalize Buchanan and her deputy Oliver Swart.

    For the Barrel Auction on the Friday evening there will be a farm-style table with a culinary feast for the 400 guests.

    On Saturday, for mains, guests will be served sour fig tagliati of beef on a bed of sautéed carrot, leek and celery with a local Huguenot snow, wild rocket, grainy mustard nicola potatoes and edamame beans.

    Swart, 27, pictured, talks about his food journey.

    When did your passion start?

    At the age of seven, I got a frying pan for my birthday. I also remember always standing at the stove watching my mom cook. I was fascinated.

    Who influenced your cooking while you were growing up?

    Both my parents cooked. My dad makes a mean Durban curry and my mom is really great with dressings, sauces and Asian dishes.

    Where and what did you study?

    Grande Diploma at Silwood Kitchen. I did half a year of studying civil engineering at UKZN but then my parents moved to Cape Town so I took the opportunity to change to cooking!

    Where are some of the places you have worked?

    The Test Kitchen, La Colombe and the Pot Luck Club.

    Did you have anyone special who mentored you?

    Annalize Buchanan. She is my great mentor and an amazing friend.

    What is your food philosophy?

    Great seasonal produce, simplicity and just keep it real.

    Is it difficult coming up with a menu for an event such as the Cape Wine Auction?

    I write menus every day so I guess I’m used to it.

    What kinds of foods do you think are underrated?

    Chicken, cabbage and gem squash.

    The latest food trends?

    Minimal, artisan, raw, vegan and Ayurvedic food.

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