Tag Archives: CTICC

Rainbows after #CapeStorm and life-size elephant cakes at GFWS

Last weekend was all about the Good Food and Wine Show held at the CTICC, but first, I attended the Integrated Marketing Communication or IMC Conference on my first day back at work after our Citrusdal break

Thursday, 1 June 2017: IMC at White Space, Salt River

IMC at White Space in Salt River
The Conference was held in the White Space in Salt River, also the grounds of Red&Yellow School – what a wonderful venue, with views of the mountains and harbour far in the distance. Click here for some of my favourite insights from the conference.

Saturday, 3 June 2017: Good Food & Wine Show at the CTICC

Sun rise in Cape Town
Husband sent me this photo of the sun rising when he left for work on Saturday morning.
Coffee at Westin Hotel
Soon it was time to head to the CBD with Mum and Dad as we were attending the Good Food and Wine Show or GFWS for the first time. We got there a little early so popped into the Westin hotel next door for a pre-expo coffee. What a lovely idea! We also parked at the hotel and just trotted across the road to the CTICC when we were done.
Elephant cakes at GFWS.
Elephant cakes! The main mission I’d set myself was to locate the life-size elephant cake I’d heard would be displayed as part of the GFWS. I didn’t know there would be a precious baby calf cake, too!
Food trucks at GFWS
There were also food trucks galore to explore, and a handy FNB ATM truck for those who didn’t come prepared.
Food at GFWS
Look at all that FOOD! It was a real treat to experience.
Good Food and Wine Show food
Some of the prettier stands at GFWS2017: Top left is round and heart-shaped graters, followed by a selection of chocolate and fudge samples (yes please), a green garden in the making, stacks of gingerbread people and assorted Lebanese food.
Peacock cake at GFWS
If there’s one thing that stood out for me at GFWS it was the cakes. Just look at some of these amazing creations – the peacock cake was my favourite!
Jenny Morris at GFWS Cape Town
Another highlight? Meeting giggling gourmet Jenny Morris. She’s just as ‘yumcious’ in real life and was ever so friendly.
Drinks at GFWS
Another thing to point out – while there’s wine aplenty, there’s also everything from ice tea to kombucha, coffee, gin, craft beer and more. See my dad trying out the ‘gin-smelling’ wall bottom right. He confirmed that it smelt strongly of juniper gin.
Johnnie Walker at the GFWS
Then my dad spent a good 20 minutes at the Johnnie Walker experience.
GFWS at the CTICC
This Easter Island-type sculpture was near all the alcohol-related stands in one of the far corners of the expo space.

Sunday, 4 June 2017: Captain’s Kitchen pizza and Wonder Woman at GrandWest Casino

Pizza at Captain's Kitchen
Once Husband got home from work on Sunday we dashed off for pizza at Captain’s Kitchen in Eden on the Bay. That’s also my latte and his Long Island Ice Tea.
GrandWest Casino
Next stop, GrandWest Casino with Spec, to watch Wonder Woman at the cinema that evening. Us comic book-movie fans thoroughly enjoyed it.

Monday, 5 to Thursday, 8 May 2017: Mid-week office sunsets, storm-scared doggies and birthday cupcakes

Woolworths chocolate cupcake
Monday was an office-birthday cake day – this pretty Woolworths’ cupcake was just delicious.
Cold dogs
The doggies were concerned about the cold weather this week. They spent lots of time snuggled in, on and under blankets.
Rainbow after Cape storm.
Here you can see some early morning shots of the sky from my office this week. The pink-streaked clouds were from Tuesday, day before the Cape storm, and the double rainbow was on Thursday morning, the day after – you can just see the repeat above the main rainbow in both pics.

That’s all, folks! We’re set for a few more splashes of rain this weekend, so stay warm and dry, and lend a helping hand to help others in need, if you can – donating beds space at Haven Night Shelter from just R60 per person per bed for five nights is an excellent idea.

Rambling Litchi’s best of 2016

Just when you thought I was done for the year, I decided a ‘best of’ compilation post was necessary.

See the list below for some of our favourite things from 2016, all in and around Cape Town obviously, and expect an annual update*. Some categories will remain, others will change. Note that most of these came to mind instantly, but some were dismissed as we experienced them last year, not this year, and others I had to manually search my blog(s) for mentions and reminders – links included if you want to walk down my memory lane again. If there are any categories you feel I’ve left out, let me know! 🙂

Milkshake: There’s no denying milkshake is my favourite treat. This year, I’ve learned that if an establishment goes so far as to title something a ‘Freek shake’ best you believe it. Gibson’s Peppermint Caramel Freek Shake was enormous and I probably should have shared it. Ditto with the Festive Underground Eatery or FUE‘s cocopine shake much earlier this year.

Gibson's peppermint caramel Freek shake.
Gibson’s peppermint caramel Freek shake.

Burger: What goes with milkshake? Burgers, of course. You just can’t go wrong at Jerry’s. The patty is tasty, cooked to perfection on a brioche bun and the side of fries doused in Sriracha is a treat in itself. The bacon, cheese and onion ring-topped buccaneer beef burger at Catch22 also gets a thumbs-up from me.

The cheese, rocket and caramelised onion topped 'Jerry' burger at Jerry's, with fries doused in Sriracha sauce.
The cheese, rocket and caramelised onion topped ‘Jerry’ burger at Jerry’s, with fries doused in Sriracha sauce.

Hike: We’ve done quite a few hikes this year to work off all those burgers and shakes – most recently the Skeleton Gorge version up Table Mountain – but our faves all involved caves. That’s because you want a good view, sense of accomplishment and a body that’s not on the point of collapse once you reach your destination. Wally’s Cave in Lion’s Head was this year’s hidden hideaway gem.

Wally's Cave in Lion's Head
Wally’s Cave, conquered! If you know where to go it’s quite an easy climb up Lion’s Head.

Conference venue: It’s not all about weekend activities though. Conferences are the lifeblood of my worklife. The Artscape Theatre and trusty CTICC are always a good bet for Wi-Fi, tasty snacks and temperature control, but my best was the Vineyard Hotel.

Vineyard Hotel
The distracting view from my seat in the Vineyard Hotel ballroom, where I attended a few conferences this year.

Night away: Living in Cape Town is a little like living in paradise, but everyone needs a break away from their daily routine once in a while. For us, the best version of this was at Majeka House in Stellenbosch. Just over an hour from our front door, the suites are enormous, the spa treatments are heavenly and the food is simply superb.

Majeka House pool
Chandelier-style lights lit up the spa and pool area at Majeka House. I spent a lot of time in the jacuzzi at the far end.

Romantic dinner: You also need to celebrate special occasions as they arise. Maybe just because we went there to celebrate our ninth wedding anniversary, maybe because they’re just up the road, but Homespun is at the tippy top of our ‘lovey-dovey locations’. The food, drinks, setting and service are all commendable.

The lamb shank at Homespun.
The lamb shank at Homespun.

Once-in-a-lifetime meal: This category is for those breathtaking meals that cost quite the pretty penny and offer course after course of plates you simply can’t help but take photos – and videos – of. The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français in Franschhoek was our winner here. Go soon if this is something on your foodie bucket list, as chef Margot Janse is leaving these kitchens early next year.

Posing with the wire win glass to prepare for the eight-course pairing dinner at Le Quartier Français' Tasting Room.
Posing with the wire win glass to prepare for the eight-course pairing dinner at Le Quartier Français’ Tasting Room.

Road trip: Whether you’re staying the night or just out for a few hours on the road, there’s nothing like a few empty hours to fulfill your wanderlust. We did so a few times this year, enjoying a few afternoons in the unspoilt beauty of Gordon’s Bay and Langebaan, both around two hours from home.

Beautiful views along the road that hugs the coast from Pringle Bay to Gordon’s Bay.
Beautiful views along the road that hugs the coast from Pringle Bay to Gordon’s Bay.

Winter special: One of Cape Town’s best-kept secrets is that many of its fine dining establishments offer warming meals at pocket-friendly prices in the cold winter months. Some of this year’s best include the half-price chicken curry specials at Inside in Eden on the Bay.

Chicken bunny chow and korma at Inside Lounge, Eden on the Bay
Two of our half-price winter chicken curries of 2016, at Inside Lounge in Eden on the Bay. That’s a bunny chow and a mild korma.

Alcohol tasting: You’re really spoilt for choice if wine is your thing, but those who prefer a more refined tipple are also in for a treat in the Cape. Val du Charron in Wellington does so with beautiful legends behind each wine blend, and many wine farms offer an MCC tasting of their bubbliest bubbly, but it’s the KWV brandy tasting that got Husband’s seal of approval this year.

KWV's ‘brandy and Huguenot chocolate' pairing.
KWV’s ‘brandy and Huguenot chocolate’ pairing.

Weekend lunch: This list proves it’s not all about the bustling CBD. In fact, on weekends there’s lots of appeal in driving a little off the beaten track to find a new venue where you can spend a few hours eating, drinking and laughing with loved ones. Glenelly Estate in Stellenbosch is a beautiful spot for this, with panoramic views of the estate’s 123-hectare vineyards, an adventurous menu and their own wine varietals on The Vine Bistro‘s menu.

View of the vineyards from Glenelly Estate
View of the vineyards from Glenelly Estate.

Seafood meal: Unless you’re allergic to it, a meal out in Cape Town should include seafood. I passed the baton the Husband on this one, and a few of his favourites were the fettuccinne marina and platter for two at Panama Jacks in the Cape Town harbour.

The seafood platter special at Panama Jacks.
The seafood platter special at Panama Jacks.

Wild meal: Eating out in South Africa often means eating unusual dishes. The tasting menu at Catharina‘s on Steenberg Estate is an excellent way to do so. Though seasonal, you’re likely to find delicacies like wild boar, crocodile and zebra on offer.

Grilled zebra with aubergine maize meal and spicy chakalaka, part of the eight-course wild tasting menu at Catharina's.
Grilled zebra with aubergine maize meal and spicy chakalaka, part of the eight-course wild tasting menu at Catharina’s.

Eggs benedict: Husband’s weekend breakfast staple, we’ve sampled quite a few this year. The ones we kept going back to were the salmon version from Company’s Garden and the pork-belly bacon benedict at Steenberg’s 1682. Tart Hollandaise, yolk that pours at just the right pace and not-your-average toasted base. Yum!

Eggs benedict with Steenberg's 1682 pork-belly bacon.
Eggs benedict with Steenberg’s 1682 pork-belly bacon. Yes.

Dessert: Sometimes you don’t want a full meal. Sometimes it’s just your sweet tooth looking for satisfaction. I seem to have a mouth full of sweet teeth as I’ve had a jaw-dropping amount of desserts this year. My best have been the caramel bar at Majeka House’s Makaron, and the winter chocolate fondant and the summer raspberry ice cream sandwich at Grande Provence’s The Restaurant. Beautifully plated, these are the type of sweet treat you swirl around in your mouth with your eyes closed, and follow with a sip of strong coffee to enhance those flavours.

The Restaurant at Grande Provence's 'berry ice cream sandwich'.
The Restaurant at Grande Provence’s ‘berry ice cream sandwich’.

Speaking of…

Coffee: My bloodstream is coffee. I’m not fully functional before at least a cuppa or two, so the weekend hasn’t officially started before I’ve had a caffeine-filled cappuccino or latte. My favourites this year include the cappuccino at Village Place Cafe, with a shot of toffee syrup, and the regular cap at The Hart Breadhouse and Eatery in Melkbos.

Cappuccino at The Hart Breadhouse and Eatery in Melkbos
I’d expect nothing less than a heart swirled into the foam of my strong cappuccino when breakfasting at The Hart Breadhouse and Eatery in Melkbos.

Over and out, folks! Here’s to sampling the very best of 2017, watch this space…

*All photos my own. Disclaimer: Some of these were experienced free-of-charge as I reviewed them for work, but most came from our own pockets. No payment was considered for this ‘best of’ list as it’s all based on personal preference.