My second Restaurant Week expedition was out to the Constantia winelands to check out 5 Rooms at the Alphen Hotel. The Alphen is a 5 star boutique hotel which went through a major renovation followed by a big relaunch towards the end of last year. This is another place I’ve been dying to check out for quite some time, but just never really got around to it. The Alphen’s manor house actually dates back to the 1700s and was declared a national monument in 1973. So it’s certainly been around for quite some time. It’s welcomed visitors like Mark Twain, Cecil John Rhodes, Captain Cook & even Jan Smuts. How’s that for an impressive guest list?
As you enter 5 Rooms you are greeted with beautiful chandeliers, rich colours & stand-out old world details…
Each of the 5 rooms had it’s own theme, but they all have one thing in common: the decor is a perfect mix of historical detailing with modern luxury. The rooms certainly have a royal feel to them as well. Where The Roundhouse reminded me of a refined lady, this restaurant reminded me of a Queen with a penchant for all things glamourous.
People had told me that I also needed to check out their Rose Bar which is apparently incredibly beautiful and overlooks the 11.5 acre garden. But unfortunately it’s currently closed due to some extension work going on. Clearly it’s a popular spot it they felt they needed to expand. But I took a pic from their website to show you what it normally looks like:
OK enough ooh-ing & aah-ing about the property. Let’s talk food. They took a slightly different take on their restaurant week menu – all the options were specially created and will not be found on their normal menu. That made it all the more special I thought…
For starters we had 3 options:
- Beef carpaccio with wild rocket, Fior de Latte, Confit cherry tomatoes, goats cheese pop & basil pesto
- Avocado & watercress salad topped with tempura prawns, sweet chilli & coriander leaves
- Pickled assorted mushrooms with butternut puree, pea shoots & balsamic vinaigrette
I just loved how fresh that avocado salad & tempura prawns sounded. So that’s what I went with:
For mains we had 2 options:
- Ostrich medallions with potato rosti, cranberry jus and mushy peas
- Grilled Kingklip with lemon butter, sauteed greens & roast potatoes with a peppadew coulis
I’ve you’re a regular reader, you’ll know that I’m a girl who loves her red meat… and ostrich happens to be a huge favourite of mine. So the choice here was an obvious one:
For dessert we again had 2 options:
- Orange scented creme brulee with candied orange peel
- Chocolate brownie topped with Bar One chocolate sauce & toasted pistachio nuts
Normally I would go straight for the chocolate option without even thinking about it. But orange scented creme brulee!? Come now, how could I not try that:
So obviously I absolutely loved every little bite of the food. And the restaurant and hotel is definitely one to be seen. As for service, it was very professional as well. I really couldn’t fault anything and for that I’m going to give 5 Rooms a top Miss K Kiss-o-Meter rating of as well. As with The Roundhouse, the only thing that could be a bit of a downer normally is the price. We paid R200 for our specially created 3 course dinner, which is a very good deal – BUT, we spotted another special 2 & 3 course menu as well where you can get a 2 course for R140 and a 3 course for R190. So I’d say definitely have a look at that.
To make your own booking, contact them on 021 795 6313 or email@example.com. They are situated on Alphen Drive in Constantia.
I think for summer I’m definitely going back to chill at that Rose Bar once it’s open again. Sipping on champers, taking in the breathtaking surroundings… what could be better than that?