Fighting the Cape Town Paunch

I can hardly breathe, my face is glowing and I’m sweating like fat man on the beach. “Just go to your happy place, like fight club.” I think as I run, and run, and stop, and look at the chick running effortlessly in front of me.

Anyone who knows me well will tell you with not a single doubt in their minds, that I simply do not exercise, they have never seen it, therefore such a phenomena does not exist. But they would be wrong. I don’t like to exercise at gym, and I feel in a way it’s like weeing in front of strangers, you just don’t do it. It reminds me of a favorite quote –

Whenever I get the urge to exercise, I lie down until the feeling passes away.
Robert M. Hutchins

Gym for me was always just a nice place to spend the morning reading, and of course some talent scouting, conjuring perverse thoughts about the guys training in the pool, best am activity, and then the clever Virgin people even opened a Kauhai in the gym! She shoots, she scores!

Which all brings me to the next issue, my serial slacking, excessive drinking, serious lack of excerise and late night visits the the 24 Woolworths have all had some involvement in the creation of my Cape Town Paunch.

Let me explain, the Cape Town paunch is a large and protruding pot belly caused by simple geography. Proof, I know thats what you want, so do a little test with me. Think of the last time you saw a Jo’burg coo girl with a paunch? Nope, didn’t think so, it’s kinda like seeing one without her Guess handbag and Gucci shades, doesn’t happen.

I blame the mountain, and everyone that lives here. Finished. Try and get a (real) capetonian woman to go for a run with you instead of doing the laps in Caprice on a Friday evening, near impossible. The mountain, lean against the mountain man, no grey area there.

Seriously, we have the best restaurants in the country right on our doorsteps, pure evil if you love food as much as I do.

But halt, because as they say, fortune favours the blonde. I have found a choice solution to the endless imbroglio between James (my paunch) and myself, it is Bootcamp and dried Cranberry chewy things.

Three times a week, I go to st Cyprians school to exercise, what a trip! Under the watchful eye of a gorgeous blue eyed Jewish blonde girl, sergeant Shelly, we run and squat and do man push-ups (not me, not yet) crunches, speed skater(don’t even ask) and then we run some more.

For the first time in my life I enjoy exercise, and thanks to sergeant Shelly, James is well on his way to a long deserved holiday in puerto rico, and I am getting skinny again.

With that mountain moved, all thats left is to not eat like a salvation army orphan at a Sunday buffet, dried cranberry thingies can become the tasty snack of choice, and as for the drinking… a little friskey whiskey never hurt a soul.

The Grand daddy trailer park

After a brilliant dinner at Royale (only the best burger joint in the southern hemisphere), myself and my com-padres decided to go check out Daddy cool (previously M bar), little did we know what we would find.

Imagine, bright and shiny silver trailers, that look like over sized toasters. Well lit wooden walkways. Little American style post boxes, with the cutesy little red flags, and funny little names to match, like “Dorothy”, “Three little bears”, “Lace” and “Yoko and John”.

Grand daddy trailer park

Grand daddy trailer park

No, not another one of my trippy dreams that I have experienced as of late, but a hotel. I shit you not, a bloody hotel on the roof of a building in long street in Cape Town. This place, this strange and wonderful place is just amazing, there are a number of trailers, like on a movie set, that you can rent like a hotel room and actually stay there, sleep there in a themed trailer.

I saw the interior of three of them, first we looked at “Dorothy”, straight out of a surreal dream of some sort, baby blue and white polka dots cover every surface of the interior, a fruit bowl and fruit – blue polka dots, the phone, the toilet, the bath, the bed, the whole toot! Then under the bathroom sink, right where you would expect them to be, the ruby slippers.

“The three little bears” trailer was also just plain creative, three of everything, and then my absolute favorite, wait for it, Goldie locks’ head mounted on the wall, yes a little scary if you have to sleep there, but just completely genius!

Ooooh and then the “Lace” one, not as funny as the previous two, but so disgustingly porno, myself and two of my friends walked in and the first thing Dave said was “This is such a good place to…” and we just all packed out laughing (and I thought I had the one track mind). It is a miniature boudoir, pillows and bras and pearls and just odd and strange little details everywhere.

With such attention to detail, and then on top of that they are all equipped with little flat screen TVs, a facility to make tea and coffee, and even a full on bathroom with a toilet and bath shower (given everything is miniature) I left thinking, you have got to be kidding me, I’m dying to check into this place with a couple of my friends for my birthday, what a hoot!

Go check it out

The Kove Camps Bay Part 2

I do love my wine!

I do love my wine!

The reservation was made, the confirmation call came at midday, and at 20:23 I finally arrived, late as usual. My less than impressed boyfriend was already sitting at the table waiting for me, and I didn’t even have a pen or paper to write anything down. (Eventually I did though)

In a perfect Camps bay style cliche, our waiter was some guy that used to sleep with one of my friends, mildly amusing. Okay so we finally settle in and get to ordering drinks, the wine list starts off by explaining in great detail that the restaurant is all about the wine. The list carries on by giving you a blow by blow summary from 1991 (if I remember correctly) up to the present on the kind of harvest every year had and what the conditions where like in that particular year.

Now before I get into the night, I just have to mention the event that set the undertone for the entire experience. While John and I were picking at the wine list, I couldn’t help but noticing a hive of activity in one corner of the restaurant, paramedics were swarming around an elderly gentleman, whilst the rest of the restaurant just carried on as if it were a normal occurance for the man at the table next to you, to be going into cardiac arrest. I am no innocent, and will admit that eventhough I sort of saw what was going on, I still asked David “What is that bloody beeping noise?” It was the noise from the machine that was saving Mr. Unknown’s life, it was annoying me. The epitomy of pretension… ahhh Camps bay. (Kinda”let them eat cake” vibe.)

Picking John's wine.

Picking John's wine.

Back to the wine! I order a sauvignon blanc, asking the waiter to recommend one that is not wooded, and end up with a crisp light wine from Spier, nice. My friend John arrives, right on cue being quite the wine expert, I have another tool in my new found reviewing artillery.

The interior is not as fabulous as I expected (although David liked it), but I did like the fake plant “growing” up the pillar next to the table. The seating is well appointed making every table feel private, also there are cool “booths” with beautiful wooden butterfy mobiles suspended over the table.

This one is for the girls, for some reason women always want to know “What does the bathroom look like?” well here it is, the entrance to the bathroom is gorgeous, reminiscent of the scene in American beauty when Mena Suvari is lying in roses, framed by velvety red roses, with a panel of white roses in the middle. What was really funny though is that you can see yourself side-on, sitting on the loo in the smoke mirror panel, and it immediately made me think “I so shouldn’t have had dessert!”

On to the starters, we decided to go with the prawns and the mussels. The prawns where tasty, they made them in a variety of three seasonings, garlic butter, mustard and peri peri, the  nice thing about the prawns was that they were already out of the shell so you could just eat them, what a lekker lazy delight. The mussels stole the starter show though, the white wine sauce they make is so aromatic, just super, just beautiful and yum yum yum. (But when we asked the runner for some bread to lap up the sauce, we got asked “How many slices?… Huh? What? That really made us laugh.)

My food.

My food.

I was not surprised by the menu, especially after I heard that The Kove is in-fact a sister restaurant to Bungalow, Paranga and Pepenero, they all have kind of the same feel, almost like the macdonalds chain of the fine dinning experience in Cape Town. One thing that did catch my eye was the Chateau briand, a dish rarely seen on a menu in Cape Town, and also well priced for a 500g fillet.

David's food, sharing bearnaise is caring.

David's food, sharing bearnaise is caring.

I ended up having the fillet Bearnaise, the meat was very tender melt in you mouth mmmmm… tarragon, yum. John had the fillet Bordelaise, a marrow based red wine sauce, but not particularly spectacular. David had a rump, plain and simple, a little dry not great (a little over cooked). Which made me think that without the sauce, mine probably would also have been dry and boring, I just have such a love affair with Bearnaise sauce, love could be blind.

John's food, and my Bearnaise!

John's food, and my Bearnaise!

The wine we ended up having with dinner was a Thelema Merlot 2004, very chocolaty, very plush and perfect with the food! But what a fight to get it out of them, we originally ordered a Meerlust 2004 merlot, our dim waiter brought us the 2005, thinking we wouldn’t notice, but the clever cookie I am I remembered their cultivar year thingie at the front of the menu and remembered wondering why 2005 was such a shitty year for wine, so I told him that that was not what we ordered, and asked to speak with their sommelier… They are supposedly a wine restaurant, bla bla, but they don’t even have a sommelier, I thought that was very weird.

The sweet stuff though was seriously, seriously out of this universe! Les desserts étaient superbes! John had something like orange flavoured cream cookies, Dave had the chocolate ice cream with rich Lindt chocolate sauce, and I had the crown of creation, three flavours of panna cotta, chocolate, pistachio, and vanilla pod, plus I hi jacked half of David’s chocolate sauce.

The service was prompt, the waiters eager and helpful but uninformed, all but one. The music set the mood of having dinner in an elevator.

All in all, the deserts, wine and the company were the best things about the night. Yet another Camps bay restaurant is characteristically abusing unassuming tourists and presenting another plastic platform for the wealthy folk to have a public pissing contest. Our bill came to an astounding R1200.00 for three people. Our mistake, I for one will probably not be going there again.

Ode to ’84



Once upon a time, twenty five years ago really important things happened.

Coincidentally, I was also born in 1984. Now the reason I’m writing about this particularly good year, might sound quite strange, I was lying in bed this morning pondering men and wine and years. I have only ever dated one guy born in the same year as myself, and the strange thing about that, is that even though we ended up throwing things at each other, we were really on the same wavelength in terms of that weird, good vibes 80’s ness, we remembered the same music as kids, watched the same morning cartoons…

Lets just put it like this (If you were also of vintage 1984, you will so understand) when I think of my early childhood, I can smell my mom’s Chanel no 5, I see red red red nails with a pretty diamond inlay in her ring finger, a white (now ancient) BMW cabriolet, and I hear the sweet sounds of UB40, George Michael, Belinda Carlisle, Michael Jackson and Billy Ocean. And when paging through above mentioned boyfriend’s photo album, I could just see.. IT the 1984 ness of his life, and I thought we were meant to be.

Lots of other really important stuff happened in 1984, like Vanessa Williams becomes first African American Miss America, Apple Computer releases the Macintosh personal computer, the AIDS virus is discovered,  Michael Jackson wins album of the year with Thriller.

Being born in 1984, meant that you were the last real generation that begins in the 80’s because form there on, its all just Sega and Nintendo, not to say that there is anything wrong with either of those, but I’m willing to bet that a guy born in 1984 won’t take you to a movie on date, you can count on something out of Cocktail with Tom Cruise (1988).

Here’s to my quarter life mark, the first twenty five years of the cracking adventure that is my amazing life, a never ending story if you will, my favorite movie as a kid, just by the by, and also 1984.

The Kove Camps bay part 1

eatingAfter receiving a flood of feedback on my post the Christmas tsunami in Cape Town, I have decided it is time to try out The Kove Restaurant in Camps bay, after it’s vague mention in my said post a couple of peeps have wanted to know what its like, and if it’s any good.

The well salted, novice restaurant critic that I am, I am going to satisfy the requests of the people, and go test drive this buggy.

I have just made the reservation for 8pm on Tuesday night, 13 January. So far so good, I even got asked if I prefer a specific table, nifty. I will keep you up to date from the “talent” of the waiters, to the starters, to the deserts, right up to paying the bill.

I just love a little dinner escapade, watch this space!