Lavish elegance tinged with timeless trendiness and topped with a kiss of romance is what the newly opened Reserve Brasserie, as part of upmarket club The Reserve in Adderley Street, is all about. I was lucky enough to experience this exclusive luxury at both the launch and as a customer for a sit-down meal for two recently.
Trying to compensate for a late arrival at the launch, my partner and I arrived fashionably early for our Friday night meal. No worries, a couple of drinks - including a deliciously frozen margarita courtesy of the friendly bar staff - kept us well occupied at the bar till it was time to settle at our table.
Our waitress, Frankie, was exceptional: attentive, friendly and supremely helpful, she with the help of maître d; Bruno Felanti, both made sound recommendations, kept drinks flowing and entertained throughout the evening.
As a taster bonus, Bruno brought us an oversized shot of homely yellow lentil, chicken and Indian spice soup as an appetite teaser, a perfect belly warmer for the wintery weather. This was followed by a starter of beef carpaccio, which was exceptionally seasoned and comfortably light and fresh.
For the main course, my partner wisely chose the soy-marinated sirloin with truffle and parmesan sauce and coriander relish. Never before have I experienced such order envy. I think quite possibly that might have been the tastiest piece of meat that I have ever experienced: sumptuous and buttery, it was a true culinary delight and left such an impression - even though I only managed to sneak a bite or two. That said, my own main course was nothing to complain about. I chose the Asian-style King Salmon accompanied with a side dish of sautéed cabbage. The salmon was cooked to perfection and was delicately spiced and flavoured. My only complaint was that it was a tad too sweet, but the saltier cabbage helped combat any overly saccharine moments.
For dessert, the sticky toffee pudding lived up to its high recommendations and the lemon-and-strawberry sorbet helped appease any guilty feelings about over indulging.
Head chef Seelan Sundoo changes the menu monthly, so there is no concern about order fatigue - in fact you are quite spoilt for choice with all the tasty sounding options, making the Reserve Brasserie a perfect venue to return to again and again. And the added option of dancing away those guilty gourmet pleasures at the adjoining club, The Reserve, make this opulent Gavin Rajah-designed restaurant a perfect weekend hangout for the trendy business types and socialites.
The Reserve, 130 Adderley Street, Cape Town. Restaurant - Tuesday to Saturday. Club - Friday and Saturday (extended over the summer season). For dinner reservations call +27 (0)21 422 0654/083 497 1038 or mail or go to www.the-reserve.co.za.
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