To celebrate Bernard turning a quarter century, we spoilt ourselves and our taste buds with the newly launched Autumn/Winter menu at La Mouette. Each season this elegant restaurant in Sea Point serves a six-course tasting menu, packed with interesting flavour, texture and served in an impeccably styled manor. Chef Henry Vigar is at the helm, concocting a flavour-rich assortment of dishes, available à La Carte as well. We didn’t hesitate to order the tasting menu – it was a special occasion after all.
Along with his wife, Mari Vigar, and business partner Gerrit Bruwer, La Mouette was opened in May 2010, and has remained a hot spot on the Cape Town dining scene. The restaurant lives in an old Victorian style manor house, and the interiors have seen a new lick of paint and refurbishment. It boasts a warm, old world quality to it, and the menu is a fusion of French style cooking and sophisticated flavours.
Sitting next to a toasty fire, and warmed by La Motte Millenium red blend, the feast began and went as such…
Artichoke granola Truffle mascarpone, semi dried red grapes, wood sorrel and artichoke milk
Pumpkin and beetroot “Miang Kham” Buffalo fromage blanc, chilli and cashew nuts
Roasted cauliflower Pinenuts, carrot, caper, raisin and onion crumble
Duck confit salad Red cabbage, quince and pear
Pickled East coast sole Herb pureé, vegetables, horseradish and potato skin
Mushrooms on toast Shitake pureé, mushroom ketchup and parmesan
Kingklip Parsnip, radicchio, shitake and saffron emulsion
Beef and onions Beef tartare, BBQ shortribs, pickled onions
White chocolate Rhubarb, butter milk, hazelnuts and wood sorrel
Boerenkaas (R45 supplement) Vetkoek and persimmon chutney
(The tasting menu is charged at R295 pp, and includes all six courses, or R495 with wines).
In the summer you can sit outside in the courtyard, alongside the soothing trickle of a fountain; a charming focal point in the space. With the wind rustling the boundary trees and the soft pink light of the setting sun, it truly has an enchanting spirit. In the winter, the space holds five fire places, one for each room, and with deep maroon and dark blue walls, it’s a warm and inviting ambience.
The service is excellent – professional and attentive to your every need, and the wine list is varied and interesting – a well thought out selection that makes for brilliant pairing. The staff went the extra mile and spoilt Bernard with a ‘happy birthday’ dessert, complete with a glowing candle, which we enjoyed with bubbly (naturally). For birthdays, anniversaries or special occasions, La Mouette is a treat for the senses. B, please have a birthday again soon.
Photography Bernard Myburgh Words Lisa Wallace