Aubergine Restaurant opened its doors in September 1996 with a vision to create a gastronomic haven in an atmosphere of timeless elegance where diners could enjoy innovative and creative combinations that excite the senses and pique curiosity. We are proud to have gained a significant following from both within South Africa and abroad and it is always a pleasure to welcome back guests who share our passion for good food and wine. Aubergine has received numerous local and international awards and been consistently rated among the top restaurants in the country.
'where the food flows behind the wine' Whilst the historic building, circa 1830, had new life breathed into it over two decades ago, the history and heritage remain. Wood and neutral tones provide an uncompetitive backdrop, in winter guests gather inside but in summer they dine al fresco. Stalwart of the fine-dining fraternity, classically-trained chef Harald Bresselschmidt has developed a name for himself and a faithful following based on his prowess with perfecting food-and-wine pairings. He considers himself a traditionalist, "Food needs texture," he says. Harald is not a one-dimensional chef, "My complete gastronomy is based on doing things that work." His focus is providing satisfaction for deliciousness of the food, wanting diners to depart knowing what they had, remembering dishes that were not over-complicated. The chef's menu and a la carte selection change seasonally. The chef's degustation menu is intriguing, classical and focused on using the finest South African ingredients. A dash of Oriental influence adds interest along the way, and you may see flavours of masala, inspired by Harald's Indian mother-in-law. A lightness of touch and finesse is evident in dishes like the risotto of sweet pea shoots with rabbit confit, and the quail – layered breast and tempura leg – with mango, carrot and soft egg – sublime. Desserts guarantee delight, you may vacillate between ordering the fondant of sweet potato with rum caramel, honey streusel and tonka bean, or the traditional chocolate fondant, but know that both will impress. Service is superlative and their wine cellar extensive – house wines (look out for the Aubergine Special Cuvee), fine wines and rare vintages – local and international. "I first see the flow of the wine, then match it with the flow of the food." Chef Harald Bresselschmidt