Leisure guide

Épi­cure is Chef Coco Reinarhz’s swish, new restau­rant in Sand­ton, Jo’burg, which fuses classic French cui­sine with mighty African brush­strokes. Hav­ing hosted a pair­ing re­cently with rosé Cham­pagne, he shares some of his sea­sonal high­lights

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You’ve al­ways been pre­pared to push the bound­aries and chal­lenge the culi­nary sta­tus quo. What ex­cit­ing flavour com­bi­na­tions have you dis­cov­ered this year? The most ex­cit­ing one is the black pep­per from Kivu in the Demo­cratic Repub­lic of Congo com­bined with its lo­cal cheese.

One of your spe­cial­i­ties is cook­ing red meat to per­fec­tion. What are your pair­ing ideas for that?

I re­cently dis­cov­ered a love for pair­ing Moët Rosé Im­périal Cham­pagne with red meat. I cre­ated a slightly smoked im­pala carpac­cio with a bis­sap [hi­bis­cus flower syrup] and white Penja pep­per­corn jus from Cameroon. The berry flavours of the bis­sap and the pep­pery taste of the pep­per­corn were a great com­bi­na­tion.

Jo’burg is a melt­ing pot of in­flu­ences and flavours. Do you find peo­ple here to be more open to ex­per­i­men­ta­tion?

Peo­ple have be­come more open-minded about African flavours, but we’re still be­hind other African coun­tries. I love push­ing bound­aries and ex­pos­ing guests to new flavour com­bi­na­tions, which I aim to do at Épi­cure.

• For book­ings, visit: www.epi­cur­erestau­rant.co.za

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