I love Jozi but sometimes I do feel the need to get away from the hustle and bustle from the city. For this reason I decided to visit Roots restaurant situated in the Cradle of Mankind for a food and wine pairing lunch. A four course meal with wine teasers will cost you R225 for the food and R95 for the wine.
We sat outside with a beautiful relaxing view of the lake. It’s a little surprising to see bright plastic multicolored chairs by the swimming pool when everything else is in natural earthy tones.
The interior is decorated with a clean, minimalistic, natural look that lets in plenty of light. I found the ambience to be romantic, intimate and relaxing on the outside deck.
The complimentary bread was delicious. I was however a little confused on the addition of the nut mix served with the butter.
Course 1: Cured venison with tomato & aubergine chutney, raisin, carrot, radish and pistachio dust. I didn’t like the pickled taste of the venison but once paired with the Rose it balanced the flavours of the dish beautifully.
The first course was paired with a 2015 Ernie Els Rosé.
Course 2: Kabeljou with pickled red cabbage, apple & fennel chutney, polenta, red pepper and celery shavings. This was a light summery dish with a tiny piece of fish and contrasting textures. I would have liked the dish more without the sweetness of the apple.
The second course was paired with a 2015 Ashbourne Blend.
Course 3: Beef fillet with beetroot, crushed potatoes, spinach, smoked leeks, artichoke and ashes aubergine. This was the least favourite dish as the beef was a chewy cheap cut of meat. The rest of the ingredients were delicious.
I don’t eat beef and was brought a chicken alternative despite the waiter offering venison. The chicken wasn’t cooked or flavoured well. Given that dietary requirements are requested when you make a booking I think that more effort could have been made to substitute the beef in this dish.
The third course was paired with a 2015 Cape Rock S.M.V. My least favourite pairing as it didn’t complement the chicken and is quite a heavy wine.
Course 4: Coconut panna cotta with malva, hazelnut streusel, biscotti, strawberry jelly, cranberry gel and vanilla ice cream. Dessert redeemed the previous course and had every possible food texture you could think of. The malva was sweet and so very yummy but the panna cotta needed a little more flavour and sugar.
The fourth course was paired with a 2015 Altydgedacht Chatelaine.
The sommelier was very knowledgeable. Our waiter was good but did forget ingredients in the dishes when serving. I would have liked to have been asked if I was ready for the next course as our food was served very quickly and rather rushed.
I often forget to take pictures when we are at a restaurant because we eat out a lot and it seems a little strange when the background isn’t exciting, just a restaurant. Here is a picture anyway because we were on holiday.
Our explanation of it being our monthiversary got a little lost in translation and we received this cake. It was terribly dry, stodgy and cold from the refridgerator but they do get the points for the sentiment.
Roots offers a very reasonably priced four or six course food menu and wine pairing. I would suggest you pair this outing with visit to the Cradle of Mankind because the drive is far! The menu is a surprise but I do wish they would consider posting it on their site beforehand. I thought the food was excellently paired with the wine and beautifully presented. The taste didn’t blow me away to warrant the far trip back anytime soon. Although I could be tempted if presented with a menu with flavours more up my tastebuds alley.
Ring: (011) 668 7000
Hop: Forum Homini Boutique Hotel, Letamo Game Estate, near Cradle of Humankind, Kromdraai Road, Krugersdorp
Food & Wine,