Now we have a restaurant in Seapoint.

a view from the courtyard

So here we are in week 3 and every day the phone rings a little more, a little louder, a little bit more persistent and we smile a little more every day.

All our media events and marketing exercises have been executed to what I believe to be mostly favourable feedback, wow what a time we have had. There is so much good feedback online and everywhere else, we never expected this much exposure. We should probably have been prepared, with Henry’s CV and cooking style, the sheer size of the site, the experience and personalities of the people involved – never did we see all the interest, online exposure and media coming!

Thank you so much for everyone who has supported and shared this dream with us. Thank you for the reassurance when we doubted ourselves, thank you for the vote of confidence, and thank you for all the love shown to us by Cape Town. Probably the best city in the world to open a restaurant right now! The produce, wine and people are amazing.

There have been some hiccups, some comments, some issues, some ‘do you know what you are getting yourselves into’s’ – of course there has, but one has to remain gracious at all times and never forget that living the dream is not something that everyone can do.

At the end of the day – we couldn’t be happier. La Mouette grows from strength to strength and we even have a following on twitter!

Local is lekker!

Done and dusted

How much fun was last night ala chef’s table finale? Those who were there were treated to Chris’s Whale tales, Mackspill’s hilarious stories and Jamie Who’s insightful take on it all – not to forget the fabulous wine pairing from Miss LAvenir herself, Sam Pugh. It all amounted into a hilarious louder than anything gossip, eating, drinking and laughing session, all through Henry’s 8 course tasting menu. The highlight most certainly being the ‘’crunchie “dessert at the end, as well as the Lávenir Grand Vin Pinotage on offer, not a wine for the faint hearted and therefore matching the evening that was also not for the faint hearted. (Tongue in cheek of course)

We had a great time – today my head hurts, my eyes are scratchy and my body begs for a holiday, but who cares because we did it! We pulled off three VIP Chef’s tables in three days within 2 weeks of opening the restaurant! Would I do it again? All the preparation, stress and nerves involved?

Absolutely and in a Cape Town minute!

We met some amazing people and thank you everyone for the wonderful feedback and press to come. Team La Mouette looks forward to welcoming you all back again soon!

Here are the links to some of our very fun and wonderful guests from last night. Their blogs are well worth a read – enjoy!

http://www.whalecottage.com/blog/

http://www.spill.co.za/

http://jamiewhatshisname.blogspot.com

Private Dining Room

La Mouette VIP’s, two down one to go

Dining Room 2

The last of the chef’s tables this evening and I feel a little sad. We have watched it grow and fed it for almost 3 nights in a row – only to give up this tasting menu extravaganza – service will never be the same again…

OK – I lie – service is always amazing and we love it when customers come to visit us – but in regards to tasting evenings, watch this space. They are way too much fun to not have on our calendar. If you are interested, please let us know on reservations@lamouette.co.za. If the demand is there we will plan another 8-course with matching wines sooner than later.

Just to wet the appetite here are some examples of our tasting food and matching wine menu served to the Chef Tables;

Amuse bouche
Villiera Tradition NV

Prawn and ginger ravioli
tomato, tarragon and cucumber
Villiera 2009 Down To Earth White

Mushrooms on toast
walnut salad and vanilla roasted fig
Domaine Grier 2006 Grenache


Bouillabaisse

kingklip, calamari, mussels and saffron aioli
Villiera 2009 Chenin Blanc


Rib of beef

smoked mash, calvo nero, crispy shallots and bordelaise
Villiera 2008 Merlot

Gin and tonic (pre dessert)

Passion fruit curd
doughnuts, caramelized peanuts, mint jelly and yoghurt foam
Villiera Tradition Brut Rosé

‘Crunchie’chocolate fondant, honeycomb espuma and ice cream


Petit fours and coffee

Thank you to Villiera who sponsored night number 1, we had a great time, your wines were superb and no one can go wrong with Bob and Pascal at their table.

See the link for more Vilierra,

http://www.villiera.co.za/

La Mouette VIP’S one down, two to go!

Chef’s table number one done and dusted and we are onto the second one. I do not really want to say who did attend, but let’s just say it was high profile and I felt like I was meeting a celeb! Although SHE was so lovely and I felt like we were sisters in accessories and food and wine and all things nice.

It was amazing – the food looked gorgeous! Henry did a 8-course tasting menu and each course was wonderfully colourful and interesting and evoked some kind of ‘wow’ around the table.

Mission accomplished on night one I would say as a certain foodie celeb someone wants an exclusive with Mr Vigar himself as a result.

All in a day’s work at the festive and happy La Mouette.

A Picture of the Restaurant

Dining Room 1

This is one of our 3 dining rooms, each dining room has its own fireplace, more pictures to follow soon of the rest of the restaurant

Bookings are starting to come in…

This is going to be great! Henry’s food goes from strength to strength every day and we still pinch ourselves in living this dream. Next week we have some super VIP Chef’s tables in the restaurant, three events to be precise. The people invited are all incredibly influential in the Cape Town dining scene and Henry has put together a very special tasting menu in their honour.

I cannot wait to welcome them to La Mouette. It’s all very exciting! Sam Pugh from L’avenir has confirmed her sponsorship for one of the evenings and I don’t know about everyone else, but I love ALL L’avenir’s wines – it’s something about that tractor ride between the Pinotage vines overlooking the valley, isn’t it Sam?

Onwards and upwards as La Mouette goes from strength to strength and all the reviews so far are very good – keep ‘em coming!

See Sam’s wines – follow the link;

http://www.lavenir-south-africa.com/an/degustation.php

Mari, Nanette and Henry at L’avenir.

La Mouette 3 days and counting

It’s all happening at La Mouette, we have real customers who are really happy and I think all in all the word is spreading. Thank you so much to everyone who had written such amazing reviews – keep them coming! (Unless of course you had a hideous time and I had to comp the meal and cry myself to sleep…) Which I hope will never happen.

The food looks yummy – especially the beef for two! It’s flying out of the kitchen with Henry’s French–style sauces. It’s so refreshing to taste real sauces like proper mushroom and bordelaise sauce –mmmmmm. Can you tell I am writing this late at night – post service and definitely in late night munchie mode – aaahhh meat.

Damn it’s good to be back in SA, where the meat is meat and a man must eat. (As my dad would always say every time he sat down to a perfectly cooked piece of meat!)

Looking forward to busy nights with happy people, glasses of beautiful red wine and crackling fireplaces.

Happiness turned out to be a restaurant in Seapoint. Who knew…

La Mouette is open for business!!

We are officially open. Yes it’s true – we did it! We actually opened a restaurant in 2 months! All the tantrums and tears all seem worth it now and we couldn’t be happier.
My staff makes me so proud, I fall in love with them every day a little more. According to various journalists, they have the biggest smiles in CT, no harm in happiness!

Our press launch last night went fabulously, even if we may say so ourselves. All good feedback and Henry and the kitchen were on top of their game, the food and drink flowed and even though our PR kindly put a curfew on our event, we were sad to see them go in the end. Check out the links!

Come and join us for lunch or dinner or drinks or just to say hi. Our fireplaces are working, our bar is stocked, our kitchen prepped and we are ready, steady GO!

Countdown to the 6th of May

By the time you read this online – La Mouette will be close to opening and fingers crossed – happily be enjoying her maiden flight into the restaurant world of wonders.

At this very moment where I am sitting in my kitchen on a Sunday morning, sipping on the caffeine that will hopefully kick my brain into action – we have less than one week to go until D-Day. To be precise – 4 days until real customers walk into our doors.

They will sit in the same dining rooms we have so meticulously designed for dining comfort without pretence. They will order the wine we have selected one by one, tasting on endless tasting and they will most importantly sit down to sample our menu. A Menu that has been put together by a passion for flavour and colour and inspired by a new country for our British chef who has come from afar to open his own restaurant in Cape Town.

The emotions are excitable and nervous at the same time, but never forget that we are living the dream as they say. Given that we have never before been in a position to say that – it feels damn good to say it out loud once in a while.

La Mouette is a dream that we have harboured for many years – never knew that it would happen in Seapoint, never knew the restaurant would be an old manor house and certainly never knew we would find a wonderful business partner in Gerrit our dear friend, a fantastic restaurant manager in childhood friend Nanette and above all, a passion for food and wine that conquered the fear of opening your own.

There is 4 days to go – let the games begin. See you there!

Henry, Mari and Gerrit