Si­mon’s sim­ple fare

Gen­er­ous por­tions at rea­son­able prices make this restau­rant on his­toric es­tate a firm fam­ily favourite

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - LIFE -

starter. But it was too late by then, so we en­joyed a cou­ple more glasses of Two Dogs, a Pea­cock and a Horse Sau­vi­gnon Blanc, and pre­pared for the mains.

It was my turn to choose cala­mari, and I opted for the Ca­jun Grilled Patag­o­nian Cala­mari (R120), which came with creme fraiche and a side of chips. I’m a bit of a self-pro­fessed cala­mari ex­pert, and this was an ex­cep­tional plate. I ate ev­ery last morsel.

My guest went for the good old-fash­ioned Fish & Chips, which I’m guess­ing is a firm favourite on their menu at R98. It came com­plete with crisp beer bat­ter and chunky tartar sauce, and chips of course.

It was large, and just too much for her to fin­ish as she was hold­ing out to try a dessert. But she said it was def­i­nitely de­li­cious.

With the huge em­pha­sis on food and how we grow it, I was in­ter­ested to note that Si­mon’s says they like to use fresh, sea­sonal and lo­cal ingredients, and have their own kitchen gar­den from which they pick herbs daily. They also ap­par­ently change their menu to make the most of the sea­son, in line with their pref­er­ence for sourc­ing ingredients from the Con­stan­tia Val­ley and the Cape Winelands.

Be­fore I get to the dessert, it’s worth men­tion­ing a cou­ple of other op­tions for those keen on pop­ping in for a lighter meal, per­haps to en­joy with some­thing from the ex­ten­sive wine list or range of craft beers. Their “boards” menu in­cludes one for R235 that in­cludes char­cu­terie, pate, pick­les, pre­serves and a cheese board, for two. There is another for R95 that serves one and con­sists of a cheese board of lo­cal cheeses.

We were de­ter­mined to try the dessert, and my guest’s choice of Vanilla Creme Brulee (R58) was a very, very good one. I had food envy.

I opted for the Cho­co­late Brownie & Vanilla Ice Cream (R55). At first I thought it was a some­what small por­tion, but then the waiter swooped in and gave me a far big­ger one. Ap­par- ently I’d been given the kid­die por­tion by mis­take. Need­less to say, I was to­tally stuffed af­ter­wards, and my waist­line could have done with the waiter not cor­rect­ing the er­ror.

What a fab­u­lous meal ... and I don’t think I ate again till break­fast the next day. With the wine (R180 a bot­tle), and two gin and ton­ics (R20 and R16 re­spec­tively), our bill to­talled R726, be­fore the tip.

PIC­TURE: KURT EN­GEL

Nes­tled in the fer­tile Con­stan­tia Val­ley lies a 300-year old wine es­tate, Groot Con­stan­tia and on it, Si­mon’s Restau­rant, where we cel­e­brate the riches of the Cape winelands by trans­form­ing the fresh­est ingredients into memorable meals.

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