It had been a while since I ate at Tokara, so last weeks lunch was really special. Luckily I had sampled a few of Richard Carstens dishes recently so I knew I was in for a treat.
I was invited to sample the winter menu, but landed up sampling a range of exquisite and interesting dishes. I’m a big fan of Richards work. He is experimental and playful, whilst always paying attention to flavour and texture. His food really interests me and I so enjoy talking to him about the how and why of his cooking.
This is what we ate. You will see what I mean.
Sorrel dome, caviar, crème fraîche, jalapeno,
celery and butternut
Prawn ravioli, sole goujons, mussel veloute,
tomatoes and chervil
Smoked snoek ravioli, mousse, almond crème, butternut
velouté, apple & brussel sprouts
Baked Alaska of rainbow trout, cucumber, citrus salsa,
smoked salmon ice cream, ginger, soya and mirin
Dry-aged roast carrot, gorgonzola, yoghurt, curry oil,
orange, macadamia, white chocolate and herbs
Turnip, pear, ponzu, celery, spinach, mozzarella cream,
pumpkin seeds, garlic & bonito
Chicken, tomato, garlic, parmesan velouté, gnocchi, capers
Duck, jasmine pears, sweet potato puree, potato
croquettes and cumin gastrique
Japanese cheese cake, pumpkin, wasabi, apricot, almond
and vanilla ice cream
Koeksister ice cream, almond parfait, malva pudding &
This was a truly superb lunch.
In addition to the fabulous winter special on at Tokara, from May to October, a series of themed evenings will take diners on a culinary journey: from the Grand Masters in May, where chefs like Brillat-Savarin, Carême, and Escoffier will be heralded; to Nouvelle Masters starring in June – Bocuse, Blanc and the Troisgros brothers are some of the inspiring chefs here.
Then on to the New British Wave in July featuring Roux, Koffman, Marco Pierre White and Raymond Blanc followed by the New World chefs in August: Keller, Nobu, Trotter, Perry and Wakuda will be in the limelight.
For September the theme is Modernist, featuring Adria, Bras, Gagnaire and Atala, while October sees a Sommelier “shoot-out”, where three leading sommeliers will compete to make the perfect wine pairing for a menu prepared by Richard. Evenings are priced at R400 per person for five-courses.
With front-of-house triumvirate of Wilhelm Kühn (owner operator), Johan Terblanche (restaurant manager) and Jaap-Henk Koelewijn (sommelier) keeping things running smoothly, a dining experience at Tokara Restaurant is a splendid affair, and this winter will be no exception.
Tokara restaurant is open for lunch Tuesdays to Sundays and for dinner Tuesdays to Saturdays. Kindly note that Tokara restaurant is a non- smoking venue.