What tick­led our taste buds?

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Food star of the year: Cauliflower The bant­ing diet got us all say­ing ciao to carbs. With peo­ple fo­cus­ing on a low-carb, high-fat diet, cau­li­flower was used to make ev­ery­thing from mash and cous­cous, to rice and pizza bases. Hip­ster craze: Kale Re­mem­ber kale? This leafy green veg­gie made a come­back as part of the bant­ing craze and was hailed by trendy food lovers for be­ing anti-in­flam­ma­tory and rich in an­tiox­i­dants. Health craze: Beet leaves Step­ping into the spot­light were beet leaves, known for be­ing rich in vi­ta­min A. Health­con­scious eaters loved this leaf, which is sim­i­lar to chard and spinach, and used it in soups and smooth­ies. Most hyped open­ing: Krispy Kreme De­spite the fact that we should all know by now how bad sugar is for us, South Africans still camped out overnight at the open­ing of US donut fran­chise Krispy Kreme, which opened in Rose­bank in Joburg at the end of Novem­ber. At last look, the queue was still there. Food vil­lain: Su­gar Su­gar is re­ally, re­ally bad for you. Pe­riod. It’s also crammed into vir­tu­ally ev­ery food we eat. We watched how the doc­u­men­tary That Su­gar Film ex­posed how foods usu­ally seen as healthy, such as flavoured yo­gurt or gra­nola bars, are crammed full of this sickly sweet in­gre­di­ent. De­spite this, South Africans still con­sume sugar like it’s crack. When will we learn? The worst drink: Fanta Grape A re­veal­ing #Trend­ing graphic listed the stag­ger­ing sugar con­tent in South Africa’s most pop­u­lar cooldrinks. Top­ping the list was Fanta Grape, with an eye-wa­ter­ing nine tea­spoons (44.1g) of sugar per 330ml can. Not far be­hind was Sch­weppes Bit­ter Le­mon with eight and a half tea­spoons, fol­lowed by Fanta Orange with eight tea­spoons. Coke has seven tea­spoons per can. Eew! Cof­fee stop of the year: Truth Cof­fee Roast­ing If you have to get your fix of cof­fee in the morn­ing, then South Africa’s own Truth Cof­fee Roast­ing in Buitenkant Street, Cape Town, has been the place to go, if only for its ex­tra­or­di­nary steam­punk-styled café and de­li­cious brews. Tea craze: Chai This cof­fee com­peti­tor be­came very pop­u­lar this year. It has fancy ben­e­fits be­cause of the spices in­fused in the tea, and is said to be calm­ing, re­vi­tal­is­ing and men­tally clar­i­fy­ing, erad­i­cat­ing the men­tal stresses of mod­ern life. Aah.

Res­tau­rants of the year:

As se­lected by food critic Anna Trapido, our restau­rants of the year were as fol­lows:

African eatery of the year: Ad­dis in Cape (41 Church St, Cape Town) and District Six (Em­mar­en­tia, Joburg) Best Amer­i­can eatery: Clarke’s Bar and Din­ing Room (Cape Town CBD) and Dukes Burg­ers (Green­side, Joburg) Asian food: 1890 House Sushi and Grill (Ob­ser­va­tory, Cape Town) and Chi­nese North­ern Foods (Cyrildene, Joburg) Best Steak­house: Belt­hazar Res­tau­rant & Wine Bar (V&A Water­front, Cape Town) and Alpine Res­tau­rant (Rand­burg, Joburg)

– Grethe Koen and Palesa Morei

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