Four & Twenty Cafe and Pantry

After a good Sunday morning workout session in Maynardville Park we felt ravenous! My friend and I chose the perfect breakfast place that made us feel like we were entering a French sidewalk cafe. As it was my 1st time at Four & Twenty, I did not know what to expect about the food nor the place itself.

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Who would have thought this quaint cafe situated in Wolfe Street, Wynberg, and yes Wynberg in a very pretty road alongside the park would be that popular. Upon our entrance we were informed that there is a waiting list and a table should become available within thirty to forty minutes. We politely agreed to wait as the ambiance of the place sucked us in. Asking to use the ladies room while we wait gave me the perfect opportunity to explore. Four & Twenty is a classical house that was transformed into this delicious smelling cafe with a combination of vintage and quirky decor. Walking past the toilets which were themed I stumbled across an intimate courtyard away from the hustle in the main cafe. We then realised why it was called a pantry as we came across a well situated wall packed with local produce and artisanal goods for sale. This brought us back to the front of the cafe where the hostess informed us that they have a table ready. It was definitely our lucky morning because this was less than ten minutes from the time we arrived. Walking to our seats in the front diner style counter which faced the road and looked right into Maynardville Park, we made ourselves comfortable and I immediately noticed some more quirkiness with the lighting which was individually placed in those old school rice strainers.

After settling in and receiving our well deserved caffeine consumption for the day, we started chatting away like females do only to have a laughing fit due to a flying heart (the miniature piece of confectionery art placed on a teaspoon). After containing ourselves and relieved that it didn’t fly into someone’s food or hair we started browsing through the menu which has a picture of “Sing a Song for Six Pence” on the front cover. I felt this picture was a perfect choice as the menu simply sings to you with the host of options ranging from breakfasts, lunch, light meals and unique savouries and sweet delights ( for my Muslim community please note that the cafe is not halal, but there are a host of choices). It was evident that the owners spent a lot of time not only on the place itself but the food too. It was extremely difficult making a decision, I decided to opt for something different and ordered the Eggs Be- Lean, two free-ranged poached eggs on an aubergine, mushroom and truffle rosti with confit baby tomatoes and light yoghurt hollandaise. Wow, reading exactly what I ordered is a mouthful in itself that only cost me R80. While waiting for our food, I looked around and found myself eyeing their confectionery counter with a feeling of ‘love in my tummy’. The hunger pains started building and then our food arrived which was served like a plate of art. Every bite of my eggs felt like a gastronomic experience. The combination of poached eggs, mushrooms, aubergine and yoghurt hollandaise complemented each other so well my palette felt like it was celebrating. One thing is for sure from Four & Twenty and that is Love…. the love for good food!

I was impressed to find out that my first impression as a French sidewalk cafe was accurate as the owners, two friends; both trained Grande Diploma Cordon Bleus chefs manifested their dream of Four & Twenty at the foot of the Eiffel Tower. Well done ladies, your dream has evolved into a masterpiece!

I cannot wait to go back to try the Plum Frangipane Flapjacks.

Next time I will be making a booking and requesting the courtyard seating. Till then, keep sharing your love Four&Twenty!

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Tea Under The Trees

This beautiful gem found in the heart of the Winelands, Paarl to be exact is so true to its name. It is a tea garden where you zone out from the everyday hustle and bustle and literally have tea under the trees. My 1st experience left me feeling like I never want to leave. You forget about time when you in the garden and focus on the beauty and all that there is to take in and not forgetting the delicacies to indulge in. Tea Under the Trees takes on the inspiration from Alice in Wonderland, it also reminded me of the secret garden, with the greenest lush grass, huge trees, benches to relax on or in my case to pose for a photo and so many different shades of well trimmed flowers in the garden. There is even a mini orchard on the one side and sheep grazing in the grass (okay they not real, its beaded sheep, but such beautiful crafted local art).

My 1st experience was for one of my best friend’s birthday breakfast. We fell so in love with the place that we decided to make Tea Under the Trees our birthday breakfast special outing. My next visit to the majestic garden was for my birthday. Yet again, my experience was special. We arrived for breakfast at 9.30 am (the garden opens at 9 am Mondays to Fridays and closes at 4 pm). The adventure began from the moment we parked in between the vineyards. Walking to the garden on a path made from tiny stones we passed the cutest vintage kids party and the quaint play area for the children. We were welcomed with friendly smiles and showed to our table which was perfectly situated at the start of the greenest stretch of grass that screamed for the kids to go running. Looking into distance all you see is greenery, chandeliers hanging from the trees and all kinds of flowers. At this stage my tummy started rumbling. The garden is not Halaal but that was not a problem as there are still a few options for us to choose from. Our breakfast consisted of freshly homemade scones served with jam, cheese and butter and toasted tuna & mayo on homemade brown bread. We were so hungry we devoured our food but that was also a sign that we enjoyed every bite of it. After breakfast we went exploring in the garden, ran around, and checked out the vintage shop, walked at the back of the colonial – styled house where they cook all the food. This felt a bit like a walk through the museum with all the antique equipment. The best part of the walk-about for the kids was coming across the trampoline in an area where the swimming pool is. Naturally the child in me convinced myself to go jumping.

After walking off and jumping off our delicious breakfast, 3 hours had flown by and it was time to bid the garden farewell. That is what I love most about Tea Under the Trees, you lose yourself to the beauty of the place, you forget about all your worries, you unwind and enjoy what you have around you. Tea Under the Trees I will be back to try your yummy desserts and homemade ice tea!

I highly recommend this place to all; it’s perfect for a girls date, family outing, kid’s party, bridal / baby showers and even intimate weddings. Pictures do not do justice to the beauty of Tea Under Trees, you need to experience it for yourself!

Till the next time we meet, stay magical.

Salted Caramel & Peanut Cheesecake

Thought I would start my 1st post  in my restaurant diary with my dessert experience at the Vineyard Hotel & Spa (https://www.facebook.com/vineyardhotel/?fref=ts).

I had the salted caramel & peanut cheesecake with citrus mocha cream. Wow, this the most delectable dessert I have had for a while. It is like  a party in your mouth with the culmination of tastes. I went with the intention of satisfying my creme brulee craving but could not see myself finishing a full portion so I settled for the half portion cheesecake. Half portion is just not enough for this slice of heaven.

Sitting all by my lonesome in the lounge area of the Vineyard Hotel http://www.vineyard.co.za/ unwinding after a busy day I found myself savouring every spoonful in slow motion. The cheesecake itself was perfection, the citrus mocha cream complemented the caramel and peanut flavours so well. I went as far as using the strawberry garnish and dunking it in the citrus cream. For the R45 half portion ( R78 full portion) you definately getting your money’s worth.

Compliments to the pastry chef !

salted caramel & peanut cheesecake