The harbour at Charlestown, Cornwall

We are pretty dedicated omnivores. We eat a wide range of foods and endeavour to enjoy a very balanced diet – within the constraints imposed by frequent meals at events and in restaurants. So it was interesting to be offered a vegan three course meal at a wine estate restaurant last week, a restaurant which does have vegan dishes as part of their portfolio. So that is part of this week’s MENU, along with a Champagne event and more stories about Cornwall. We enjoyed it all and hope that you will enjoy our stories

Gauteng readers can enjoy Wade Bales Cap Classique & Gin Affair at the Southern Sun in Hyde Park Rooftop Terrace Bar, on  Saturday 23rd November from 3-7 pm and Sunday 24th November from 1-5 pm. Book your tickets today at QUICKET TICKETS

A huge thank you to all our generous readers who have paid a voluntary subscription to MENU into our Payfast and PayPal accounts. PayPal works well for readers outside South Africa, but Payfast works better for contributions in Rand

Your contributions help us to cover the expenses we incur in publishing MENU

Subscribe
An invitation to visit Neethlingshof to taste their newly released white wines, some of their current red wines and some barrel samples followed by lunch was quickly accepted. It is rather a long time since we last visited and tasted the wines of winemaker De Wet Viljoen. Read on…
Wine Concepts French Champagne Festival was an even better success this year than in the past. Why? They changed it to a Saturday afternoon affair and it was much appreciated by the guests who came in their droves.  How special to spend an afternoon tasting the top Champagne marques and enjoying some canapes for R500 a person, cheaper than a bottle of a single bottle. Read on…
Mevagissey is only a few miles away from the Eden Project, which is an educational charity. Inside two massive connected biomes, covered in plastic, are plants that are collected from many diverse climates and environments, including South Africa. The project is located in a reclaimed china clay pit, located 5 km from the larger town of St Austell, which you go through to get to Mevagissey. It was started in 1998 and completed in 2001. Its purpose is to demonstrate the importance of plants to people and to promote sustainable use of plant resources. Read on…
Even though he had visited Cornwall several times, John had never visited Padstow, so Lynne wanted to show it to him. She has spent many happy days there, walking along the cliffs and then finding a good pub to have a good beer with mates and a pasty from the Rock Bakery on the other side of the estuary. Padstow is a very popular town and is well known for having several Rick Stein restaurants. We love his cooking programmes and his recipes have become standards in our home. Read on…

It seems that we may be about to enjoy a period of warmer weather, so it is back to eating salads for us. This is something very easy to put together and rather unusual. We think you will like it. If you have a mandolin grater, it makes thinly shaving the fennel very easy Read on…

which is full of green pepper pyrazines, fig leaves and granadilla on an intense nose. Crisp and round on the attractive palate with some sweetness mid palate, green peppers, lime and guava. We enjoyed this wine so much; it is an excellent example of a good Cape Sauvignon Blanc. It went so well with food too. And the price is affordable. R80 on the farm

15th November 2019

All verbal and photographic content used in this site are © John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor and Bacchus, unless otherwise specified

MENU has appeared nearly every week since March 2003, initially as a free newsletter from our shop, Main Ingredient, and has been sent to our subscribers by email. Many of our subscribing readers have followed us from our earliest days and we appreciate your support

It is also published as a blog, on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram and gives our personal view of events relating to food, wine, accommodation and travel in photo stories, as well as weekly recipes and wine reviews

We have never charged a subscription fee, and MENU has never made us any money. But our expenses are putting pressure on our pensions, so we are taking a bold step and asking our readers for a voluntary subscription to help us to cover our expenses. MENU is produced, on average, 45 weeks per year. We leave it to you to decide the amount of your subscription. We suggest a voluntary annual subscription of R100 (roughly the price of a mid range bottle of wine), which is less than R2.50 per week. In International currencies R100 is approximately £5.80/€6.30/$7.10

 Click on the Yellow Subscribe button for PayPal and the Red Subscribe Now button for PayFast

We want to use wine barrel staves as the covering of a pergola which we wish to build on our deck, which has no protection from the sun. If any of our wine maker readers have old barrels which have outlived their original purpose, or even loose staves from old barrels, we’d love to have them. Condition is not important, we just need the staves. Please let us know


We keep talking about rain and the scarcity of water in our blessed, beautiful province. We are still in trouble. 2018 has seen the lowest rainfall of any year since 2010 and even though 2019 looks as though we're having good rainfall, we still need to be careful; we don't know what the future holds. 

It is not difficult to be careful; just be aware of what you do with water and look after this precious resource. Don't leave the shower running while you soap, use grey water to flush, don't run the dishwasher until it is full..... We're in crisis. Think about it! Your garden may, like ours, become a desert. Sad, but necessary and a minor sacrifice in comparison to queueing at a hose for your daily 25 litre allowance. We are planting succulents and other water-wise plants which will tolerate the conditions and still give us pleasure

So don't think that it's OK if it's raining; the trouble is that it is not raining enough. The dams are only, on average, not sufficiently full. We need to try harder. It is no use hoping that more rain will come. If it does, it will be a blessing, but the long term forecast still does not encourage optimism. Tapping into aquifers and installing desalination plants will help in the long term, but we must face up to the fact that water will always be a scarce, precious commodity in the Western Cape. The world's weather is in trouble. Europe is experiencing temperatures that we are used to here in Africa. Vineyards are being planted in England. It might be normal in Spain, but when we hear stories from chilly Scotland and often icy Norway about temperatures in the 30s.....

Advertise here

Ask us about our rates