Let’s observe this photo. OK. Done? This is the beautiful Charmaine Mampe Ramalope aka The Glam Foodie. I have the biggest girl crush on her, also, this blog post is probably going to be such a gushing session, so please just excuse me. There is nothing more attractive, than a woman that is completely “put together”. Flawlessly gorgeous, exuding confidence, but remaining humble, and just an all round sweet heart. Yes, she is that glam!
I attended her first #GlamFoodie Wine and Dine evening about two weeks ago, at Aarya Restaurant in Johannesburg. Aarya is Chef Deena Naidoos baby (MasterChef SA Season 1 Winner) , which is situated in the heart of the bustling Monte Casino, and part of the Tsogo Sun Group. Glen Carlou Wines, also played a part in the evening and we were all given a slight education on the farm from the wine maker, Arco.
The menu of five courses, was paired with varieties of blends from Glen Carlou, and each perfectly balanced with the delicious food that came out of the kitchen. We started the evening with a trio of canapes, paired with the Unwooded Chardonnay, with its crisp fruit intensity, it was a pleasant surprise. Our starter was Scallops with a creamed risotto, drizzled with a thick prawn bisque (I need the prawn bisque in my life all the time), which went down well with the Classic Chardonnay. The next two courses of Quail and Lamb Rack, paired well with the Merlot and Gravel Quarry Cabernet (The Cabernet is PHENOMENAL) The food was delicious, the Quail, served on a Wild Mushroom Parcel was heavenly, and the Lamb Racks Shank and Spinach Thimble, was filled with flavor and was mouthwatering.
Moving onto dessert, which was paired, as you might of guessed with a dessert wine. I generally don’t do dessert wines, I find them to be overtly sweet and, for me, they some how take away from the tastes of the dish. To my surprise, The Welder Natural Sweet Chenin Blanc, was deliciously smooth on the tongue, and not grossly sweet, served with A Creme Brulee, Panna Cotta and Creamed Lemon Curd.
We walked away from the evening, full of amazing food, good wines, a little more knowledge about Glen Carlou, and a new appreciation for Deena and his team. I really do take my hat off to him. I know how hard it is to run a kitchen, and how easy it is to mess it all up, but his passion and intensity for what he does, shines through and is wonderfully translated to his food and the amazing buzz in his kitchen.
Charmaine is the perfect hostess, constantly around and filtering herself to all the tables. You can see that these Wine and Dine evenings, are going to be supported and will grown as the word spreads.
Follow The Glam Foodie SA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to keep up to date with the next Wine and Dine evenings, that will be happening in and around Johannesburg.
Be sure to book and secure your seat, as these are bound to be amazing.
Photos used with permission of The Glam Foodie SA
Photos taken by Collin Makhubela