Natura Naturans: The Earth Laughs in Flowers is the name of Chantel Dartnall’s stunning new spring/summer menu for 2018 at Restaurant Mosaic at the Orient, rated as one of the finest restaurants in Africa.
The menu – in which Dartnall pays homage to Mother Nature – again features the chef’s signature Botanical Cuisine, using only the best seasonal produce with Dartnall taking her cue from nature. More dishes will be revealed by the award-winning chef in coming weeks.
The Earth Laughs in Flowers
There’s a poem in every flower,
a sonnet in every tree,
a story in every lifetime
it’s just for you to see…
listen for the music
your ears sometimes cannot hear,
just strain yourself for the melody
that’s so far and yet so near.
She wrote the past in characters
of fire and ice and rocks so strong
in turbulent oceans and coral seas
creator of the wind through forests, her song
the wonder of Mother Nature,
the magic of the divine
is there to see, for all of us,
her gifts are yours and mine.
Chef Chantel Darntall
There’s the playful My Bento Box, complete with a pickled carrot ice lolly, spring marshmallow, garden pea and smoked snoek and patat. For this season I have combined four amuse bouche into one serving to mimic the concept of the Bento Box as my version of a delightful entrée before the first dishes are served.
Chantel Dartnall | Restaurant Mosaic at the Orient
Under the Veil – a composition of langoustine, white peach and hibiscus is her paean to her beloved ouma: “She always smelt faintly of lavender and 4711 Eau de Cologne and was able to take humble moments – such a pitching a make-believe tent in her bedroom – and transport me into a world of enchantment.”
From the Frozen Ocean has the Arctic salmon “cooked” in front of the guests in a magic piece of culinary theatre while Cherry Blossom, using duck wings and lightly smoked duck breast with luscious cherry flavours, is likely to become a firm favourite with diners.
For dessert, The Earth Laughs in Flowers combines passionfruit, Valrhona chocolate and violets in a riot of colour and flavour – and yet all is not as it seems…
Different bread and butters – each one paired for a course – are prepared by the Mosaic team of artisan bakers and include mini mosbolletjies with a dunker (a delicious aged Parmesan cheese sauce). Mosaic’s signature anchovy butter is served with spring flower tuiles while vanilla seaweed butter comes with the seaweed and dill roll.
Of course, Restaurant Mosaic’s famous cheese trolley – including a Charles Arnaud 36-month matured French Comté and the Epoisses de Bourgogne (reputedly Napoleon’s favourite cheese) –remains part of the Mosaic magic on the spring/summer menu.
There is a choice of four Natura Naturans menus – the Grande Dégustation, the Market Dégustationas well as the pescatarian and vegetarian options. Diners can partake of the sommelier’s wine pairings as well as a non-alcoholic pairing with drinks specially chosen to complement the meal.
Menu Per Person: R1 450
Enthusiast’s Wine Pairing: R545
Connoisseur’s Wine Pairing: R595
Menu Per Person: R950
Enthusiast’s Wine Pairing: R405
Connoisseur’s Wine Pairing: R485