As it was Friday again, we decided to head towards Paarl for an early 2016 Valentine’s lunch. We reserved a table at Glen Carlou Restaurant, but as we had some time to kill before lunch, we popped in at Koöperasie Stories between Paarl and Franschhoek. It is an amazing French style shop which sells furniture, crockery, linen and everything else. It could be easy to spend a morning in this interesting shop, but lunch was waiting at Glen Carlou which is under the ownership of the Hess family. Classic wines and contemporary cuisine is the raison d’être of this young wine estate which is growing from strength to strength.
From the first moment we drove up the driveway through the vineyards to the stunning building in which the restaurant is situated, it was a delight. Although it was a very hot day, we decided to sit outside to enjoy the stunning views. Situated on the far opposite side of the valley is the Spice Route Winery that we had previously visited.
Our friendly and competent waitron first of all brought some bread rolls with duck liver parfait and savoury butters. Our meals were very elegantly served and testified that there is a competent chef working very hard in the kitchen.
Blue Cheese Ravioli with beetroot, nectarine, green couscous and parmesan was my culinary art work and Deon’s was Pork Belly with skordalia, tender stem broccoli, mushroom ketchup (with a very chocolaty flavour) and apple and walnut salsa.
For dessert we shared Frozen Dark Chocolate Tiramisu with berry gel, mascarpone sorbet, crisp chocolate mousse and berries. We enjoyed the extra little treats from the kitchen – amuse-bouches before the main meal which was a little bite of ostrich fillet and then a berry treat which arrived before the tiramisu – almost too beautiful to eat.
Glen Carlou is indeed a very special restaurant – well done to them!