I may or may not be slightly biased, but I love great food in a beautiful setting, add to that impeccable service and a knowledgeable sommelier and I am certainly hooked.

Enter The Saxon Hotel. Since my arrival in Johannesburg 10 years ago I have always leapt with joy when invited to dine or to an event here – this multifaceted hotel just piques my interest in a way that no other can. There are so many different areas (great photo’s for the gram), and there are a variety of different areas to enjoy a drink or dinner, that I don’t think you could ever get bored at The Saxon Hotel.

I was recently hosted by the hotel to a 5-star dinner at its well known, and oft-spoken about Qunu Restaurant – and wow was I impressed. I interviewed Aussie chef Jane-Therese Mulry (my first ever chefs interview in 2016) and since then I have waited to dine off one of her menus again and for good reason.

Qunu extends a warm African welcome, enticing you with its rich surroundings, red tones, woven lampshades and an ambient glow, enhanced by the remarkable hanging gardens. Beyond the hanging gardens, the doors open onto the Fig Terrace where guests can dine under the striking canopy of fig trees.

Sporting a beautiful indoor area that looks like an outdoor area, Qunu exudes a sense of being an intrinsic part of Africa and pays homage to its South African roots, being named in honour of the small rural town that our beloved elder statesman, former President Nelson Mandela loved to call home. The living wall was a great touch and the cool, mossy feel just really relived the Joburg summer heat perfectly.

Now – on to the nosh! I chose to stick with bubbly right the way through dinner and I won’t say that this affected my dining selection, but I did choose carefully and thoughtfully.

For starters I really dithered, there were so many fabulous options and the forerunners were Ceviche with Papaya and Passionfruit and the Pork Belly with Radicchio and Apple, however, the Mushrooms with Hemp won the day and was the perfect combination of a grilled king oyster mushroom, mushroom tartare, hemp nut tabbouleh, cigar of mushroom paté cigar and a rooibos gel.

Main course selection was much easier and I opted for the Salmon Mussels and Pickles which was out of this world! The dish comprises of crispy skin salmon, pickled mussels and cucumber, puffed wild rice, tempura celery leaf, seaweed and activated charcoal.

By the time we called for dessert I was close to calling it a night as I had eaten so well, but my dining partner insisted and I had to order my favourite Saxon desert, The Saxon Torte (it’s also Oprah’s favourite dessert that she eats every time she comes to stay) and I did a pretty good job for someone that was full. I know why its Oprah’s favourite – cos it’s freaking delicious and decadent! Comprised of
Manjari 64% chocolate torte, lime whipped ganache, seasonal berries and vanilla custard – this one will leave you satisfied to the max.

Find out more about not only The Saxon Hotel, but their dining options right HERE…

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