Mondiall Kitchen & Bar Opens In The V&A Waterfront03 December 2013
Cape Town’s most anticipated new restaurant, Mondiall Kitchen & Bar has opened its doors in the V&A Waterfront. A joint venture between acclaimed Relais & Châteaux Grand Chef Peter Tempelhoff (Executive Chef of ‘The Collection by Liz McGrath’),and international Restaurateur Patrick Symington of Cape Town’s Café Dharma and Asoka fame, it is a feast for all senses – and set to become the Mother City’s hottest new dining destination and social hub this summer.
Mondiall is open seven days a week, offering breakfast, brunch, lunch, tapas, cocktails and dinner in a modern Brasserie style setting. The restaurant underwent a complete transformation in the original ‘Green Dolphin Jazz Restaurant’ location, a prime Waterfront setting with spectacular harbour and Table Mountain views. Symington was heavily involved in the interior aspects of the restaurant, in consultation with Ali Kemali (Kemali Architecture and Design) and Simon Fraser, founder of Earthcote Paints (Simon Fraser Design & Consulting).
Peter Tempelhoff has created an exclusive menu featuring timeless classics, re-interpreted in a contemporary manner to give dishes a fresh new look and taste. With Head Chef Oliver Cattermole (ex Le Franschhoek Hotel and Dash/Queen Victoria Hotel) in the kitchen, assisted by Sous Chef Jodie Carolus (ex Vineyard Hotel and Zingara Group), Mondiall seduces with truly international cuisine, journeying from France and Austria via Sweden and England, all the way to Japan, the US and South America.
Tempelhoff explains the concept for Mondiall: ‘When I first thought of Mondiall, my vision was of a New York style Brasserie serving French/American classics in a traditional white tiled and wooden panelled dining room. But like most things, it evolved… and like Ali and Paddy’s transformation of the building, the food took on a more modern appearance too. I was a little sceptical about making the food too classical, even though I am a classicist at heart when it comes to food.
To head back in time to create a menu for a modern space was frightening… after all of the progression and advancement in food that I have been involved with to date in my career, and especially at The Greenhouse with Gerald van der Walt, it almost felt like I was going backwards. But in actual fact I wasn’t at all, I was advancing in a different way. Like most of the great arts, food has its foundations in the classics. Modern food today is based on dishes and flavours that have stood the test of time and are endeared the world over because they are simply delicious. Mondiall is a celebration of these treasured dishes.’
He continues to say that the first selection of dishes chosen for the opening of Mondiall, are timeless classics. ‘They are my favourite things to eat, as well as to cook. I wanted to rediscover these dishes; I wanted to see them with new eyes and wanted to interpret them with different ingredients and new combinations - without losing their essence.’
‘Taking perfect dishes and tweaking them a little here and there, giving them a fresh look in order for them to have a little more relevance for today’s diner, was a challenge. Oliver, Jodie and I put our heads down, did the research and development and have come up with a menu that I am very proud of… and I am sure there will be something for everyone on it!’
Ali Kemali says that in terms of design Mondiall captivates with visual and tactile references to a bygone era, much in the way of a classic European Brasserie. The natural flow of the space, combined with quality masculine materials and soft fabrics, brings out an understated elegance, creating a relaxed ambience that puts guests at ease as soon as they arrive.
The main floor is at the heart of Mondiall, with Tempelhoff’s kitchen flowing naturally into the central dining area to allow direct interaction at all times. The use of black leather, antiqued mirrors and herringbone pattern textile in this part of the building references back to the glamorous ‘old ways’, while showcasing a confident contemporary reinterpretation – much like Tempelhoff’s cuisine. The Mezzanine floor meanwhile features a Chef’s Table for up to 20 guests which, with the aid of shutters especially imported from a demolished plantation in Argentina, can be transformed into an exclusive private dining area. The outer layer of the restaurant makes use of back to back banquet style seating, using tobacco colour leather, light herringbone and a lightly tanned timber, while the long bar area extends onto a wrap-around deck with café style seating to make the best of glorious summer weather.
Simon Fraser brought a highly individualistic, lived-in feel to the interior, with natural lime based flooring and wall coatings, hand-made tables created from recycled wood, and works of art sourced from artist friends and people he encountered during his travels.
Mondiall offers all-day dining to suit all occasions and tastes. Uniquely, menus serve not only as culinary inspiration, but provide interesting facts about the origin and history of each dish. Guests therefore learn that the Viennoiserie pastries at breakfast (09:00 – 11:30, Monday – Friday) originated in Austria circa 1300, while the Seafood Ceviche one might order for lunch dates all the way back to 13AD Lima, Peru, and the Grilled Sirloin Café de Paris meanwhile actually stems from Geneva, Switzerland, circa 1932.
Set to become a firm favourite, the eclectic weekend brunch menu, available every Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 – 15:00, is an extension of the breakfast offering, with the added temptations of appetisers, entrées, seafood and desserts. A culinary journey around the world awaits guests for lunch (11:30 – 15:00, daily) and dinner (18:30 – 22:00, daily), with the à la carte menu divided into various sections – Soup & Salads, Appetizers, Eggs/Pasta/Rice, Fish & Shellfish, Meats/Grills, and Desserts. Set menus are also available. Prices are competitive, with appetizers starting at R53, main courses at R95, and desserts at R55. The Cocktails & Tapas menu (15:00 – 18:30, daily) is perfect for those looking for a relaxed drink and a small bite to eat.
The carefully curated wine list features a wide variety of cultivars and some of South Africa’s top wine labels. A select choice of international wine, Prosecco and Champagne labels is also available, including Moët Brut Imperial NV and Moët 2004 Vintage. Cocktail fans meanwhile are sure to enjoy the vibrant after dinner social scene and 13-strong Martini list, including the exclusive Mondiall Martini – Grey Goose vodka shaken with Chambord, fresh litchi, buchu, orange bitters, lime juice and jasmine, served straight up and completed with a freshly cut citrus. A range of Classics and Neo-Classics further offers a cocktail for every taste, while a wide selection of spirits and craft beer completes the Mondiall drinks offering.
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