The Taj Hotel is an unwavering symbol of a bygone era, standing stoic and stately in the centre of the city. The building itself dates back centuries, and a lot of the interior bears testimony to the craftsmanship of old builders who created works of art instead of just buildings.

When you enter the restaurants inside the Taj Hotel there is no doubt that you are somewhere special. A new concept of dining in the form of a monthly food and wine pairing is filling up seats quicker than Parliament – and if you sat down to a meal here recently you would clearly understand why.

From June until November indulgent dinners will be hosted in the Vault at Taj Cape Town. If you’re wondering where this is, it was built in the 1920s as a walk-in bank vault for the African Banking Corporation, it still displays the original colossal safe-door in the hotel.

The dinner is designed for a maximum of 40 guests and consists of a four-course dinner. On the evening I attended, the showcase was on Anthonij Rupert wines.

It was an icy-cold Cape Town evening yet the crowds showed up and showed off their love for good food and wine. As difficult a task as it is to create a perfectly-paired culinary experience, Executive Chef David Tilly and his team of chefs rose to the occasion. With the Anthonij Rupert range being so versatile, the pairing was made a lot simpler on the team.

The delicious food and scintillating wine flowed through the evening, much like the banter in the room. The entree was citrus cured salmon with a mango and lime gel, paired with a Cape of Good Hope Groendruif 2015. It was sweet, smokey, salty – everything you want your salmon to be.

Citrus-cured salmon.

The next course was the ricotta gnocchi with green asparagus and a masala tomato sauce, paired with the Cape of Good Hope Caroline 2015. The gnocchi can only be compared to soft pillows of greatness. Laying in a simple, tangy masala sauce with a chili bite, was all this dish needed to be elevated to excellence. It is always simplicity and pure ingredients that impress my palate.

Ricotta gnocchi with a masala tomato sauce.

The main course was the walnut crusted lamb rack with dauphinoise and rosemary jus served with the Cape of Good Hope Riebeecksrivier Souther Slopes. My meat was a little too rare so be sure to ask for your meat to be prepared the way you would like it.

Dessert was chocolate decadence, smoked dark chocolate with fermented raspberry, that paired well with Cape of Good Hope Basson Pinotage 2015. It was a rich and befitting ending to an evening with endless wine and flowing conversation.

Smoked dark chocolate with fermented raspberry.

It is a wonderful way to spend a night out with friends, family or celebrating a special occasion.

Each Food and Wine pairing session is designed for a maximum of 40 guests, and consists of a four-course dinner and costs R495 per person.

Due to limited seating available for theses dinners, it is highly recommended that bookings are made early to avoid disappointment. Complimentary Valet parking Included.

Contact: 021 819 2000
Email: [email protected]

Pictures: Nidha Narrandes

Article written by

Nidha Narrandes

Nidha Narrandes is a food-obsessed travel addict with 21 years of journalism experience. Her motto - Travel. Eat. Repeat. She is happiest on a road to nowhere without a plan. A masterchef at home, she can't do without chilli - because chilli makes the world a tastier place.