This has been such a fun weekend. Friday night we were invited to a birthday party at Spiro’s, the local Greek restaurant in Hout Bay. We always enjoy going there, the staff always have a smile, the food is reasonably priced and the portions generous. But what makes Spiro’s a success in my opinion is Spiro himself. He is so warm and welcoming and remembers his clientele and bends over backwards to make them happy.
We were due at the party at 630 but were running a bit late, then we ended up with everyone coming to our house for a drink. So we arrived rather late to find things in full swing. There was a belly dancer who came and did a bit of a shimmy and about 30 people in attendance. My group alone was 5 people and we ordered some food to line the stomach as I had a feeling it was going to get a bit loose. None of us had actually met any of the people at the party, not even the birthday boy Jim. We all belong to a Hout Bay Facebook group and chat daily, so I was looking forward to meeting them in ‘real life’. It felt like I knew them already and we all chatted nonstop. The wine was flowing and we were in a great mood. Mandi was staying overnight and we booked a taxi so we really let our hair down. Mandi and I had a boogie on the dance floor and even pulled the waiters up to dance with us. We had a blast.
About 5 bottles of wine between the 3 of us, topped off by a round of coke-quila. I don’t like coke and I don’t like tequila so why I decided to drink them in one big swallow of shots I don’t know. I blame Mandi, haha.
Unfortunately Norm and I paid the price this morning. Oh how dreadful I felt…at my age I don’t have the ability to recover like I used to. I blame my Cherokee heritage, I can’t take the fire water. Something is missing in my genetic make up I am convinced.
I had my wax appointment booked so I popped a few panado and put on my big girl pants and off I went. Bad plan. Don’t ever think having your hair ripped out by the roots while your head is throbbing in pain is a good idea. It’s not. But I survived and came home to snuggle up in my bed. Poor Norm spent all day out in the drizzling rain trimming trees. We wanted to clear off all limbs which would provide a hiding place for criminals. 6 carloads of tree bits later, our wall is clearly visible from the house now and it is much safer.
Tonight we were invited out with our friends for dinner at La Mouette in Sea Point. This is one of our favourite venues in Cape Town. The decor is beautifully done, it is this little gem in the midst of a busy section of town but when there you feel like you could be off in a country home. The chef Henry is a master at taking what sometime sounds like a bizarre combination of tastes which then always end up as amazingly complimentary. They have ala carte items but we always go for the tasting menu. It is 6 little mini courses and I have never been disappointed.
Tonight was no exception. The 1st course was a delicious Caesar salad surrounded by soft Quails eggs, pecorino gel, Caesar dressing, with crispy brioche croutons.
The 2nd was Coconut broth with Vegetable dim sum, crispy onion, peanuts, pickled cucumber, bean sprouts and sesame oil.. The texture of the crispy cucumber, peanuts and veggies, the creamy coconut broth all mixed into a little bowl of heaven.
Pic nabbed from La Mouette website as mine was too dark..
The next course you had a choice of either Mushrooms on toast which consisted of French toast, mushroom puree, pickled mushrooms, truffle dressing or Open lasagne of crispy prawn with Pink grape fruit, cauliflower puree, prawn bisque. I opted for the latter and it was sooo divine! I had been wary of the grapefruit as I am not a fan, but the sweet / tartness of the grapefruit lifted the taste of the dish to perfection. This dish was so appealing I wolfed it down without taking a pic, and the waiter brought one from the kitchen for me to snap. He was brilliant.
There were 2 choices for the next course as well. For the veggies, there was Winter vegetable tagine served with tabbouleh, smoked aubergine puree, pomegranate, and crispy goats cheese. For the carnivores there was Braised lamb shoulder served with Soft polenta, confit tomato, basil and polenta tuile. I am not a fan of lamb, and I really was torn but the veggie dish just did not appeal at all. I had just the day before swore to a vegan friend that lambs are too cute to gnaw on and less than a day later I was doing just that. Sorry little lambkins but dayum you were tasty. The lamb had been slow cooked and was so tender it could melt in your mouth. The polenta was the creamiest most delicious I have ever eaten, polenta can be so dry and tasteless and this was sheer perfection. The basil was steamed and served like steamed spinach, under the lamb. It had a nice texture.
It was divine.
We took a bit of a breather after the main and Mari the owner and wife of the chef sent our table a round of limoncello to cleanse our palates. Lovely.
After a bit the 5th course was served, it was 3 bite sized warm doughnuts. Crispy outside, rolled in sugar, and so soft they melted in your mouth, swimming in chocolate sauce.
I have never been a fan of passion fruit so i was a bit skeptical about the final course. it was a Passion fruit tart with Mandarin caviar, lime leaf and lemon grass cream topped with chocolate leaf. I should know by now that any preconceived ideas I have about taste preferences just go out the window when at La Mouette. It was lovely and creamy and the pastry was perfection, the crispy sheets of rich dark chocolate balanced it brilliantly.
We had a brilliant night with lots of laughs. Such a wonderful meal and wonderful friends. I love my life.