We recently went away for a Gourmet Getaway to Swellendam. Organized by Alison from Schoone Oordt, this gave us the opportunity to try new restaurants. One of them being La Sosta.
Serving traditional Italian food, lovingly prepared by an Italian chef, expect a menu that starts with Antipasti. This is followed by primi, and secondi and ends with desserts. The standard menu is small and seasonal and has a set price of R295 for 2 courses; R365 for 3 courses and R415 for 4 courses. Our dinner was a pre-set menu with wine pairing from Sijnn Wines. While we were waiting for the rest of the guests to arrive we had a taster of the Sijnn White 2015, as well as homemade ciabatta with a coffee infused butter.
Antipasti and primi
We started off with a smoked marrow bone with different texture of risotto alla Milanese. There was a sharp lemon gel which helped cut through the richness of the marrow. I mixed mine into the risotto which had the perfect texture. This was paired with the Sijnn White 2015. Following on was a homemade tortello pasta filled with wagyu beef cheek in a ricotta sauce. The pasta was perfect, the filling soft in texture and rich in taste, and the sauce the perfect foil to the meat. The pairing for this course was the Sijnn Red 2017.
Secondi and dessert
The third course was a free range duck breast served with a jus, pumpkin puree, pak choi and seasonal vegetables. The duck was tender having been cooked in the sous vide. but the fat was not crispy and a slight let down to the dish as a whole. The Sijnn Red 2011 accompanied this dish. A new take on tiramisu was presented for dessert. I loved the crunchy texture of the base, adding a new dimension to the creamy silkiness of the mascarpone. This was served with the Sijnn Port 2019 which had at the time, not been released.
Feedback and more
Dave and I will definitely eat at La Sosta the next time we are in Swellendam. However, as a gourmet getaway meal, there were a few things that could have been done better. Charla, the young winemaker from Sijnn, was not comfortable talking to a large group. She was however perfect when engaging with the tables individually. It would have been nice to know why she chose the particular wine for each pairing. And she could have been a little more generous with her pouring’s. With Salvatore in the kitchen, Nina was left to tell us what each course was. Because the meal was not staggered, the plates and dishes came out cold. I felt she was playing catch up which is not a credit to the meal. This also meant that we did not get to meet Salvatore which was a great pity.