With Mother Nature at Heart
Avondale’s Faber restaurant, surrounded by the beauty of the Klein Drakenstein mountains, is housed in a beautiful old white building, accented by a manicured garden filled with flowers of every shade. Guests are welcomed with a smile at reception, offered a seating either inside or outside on the sunny veranda. Here, they’ll enjoy a fine dining experience created by the chefs at Faber, a restaurant with a progressive ethos and a passion for evocative food and wine.
The partnership between Chef Dale Stevens and Avondale’s proprietor, Johnathan Grieve, represents the synergy between two craftsmen, with the result of offering guests a memorable, inspirational dining experience. As Chef Stevens says: “Our mission is simple to make our guests at Faber happy.” Superb craftsmanship goes into every dish by Chef Stevens, whose work respects the origins of his ingredients. He appreciates the narratives of each ingredient, finds joy in the creativity of each gastronomic process, whether contemporary or age old, and loves the power food has to make people happy.
The gravel road leading to the classic Cape Dutch building with its deep veranda sets the tone for a refined dining experience that celebrates nature. From the quiet calm of the valley views, to the backdrop of the vineyards, all conspires toward a unique Winelands dining experience.
The dishes are plated with precision, giving guests a glimpse into the process of crafting perfection. The portions are perfectly suited to allow for a complete menu tasting, which is best enjoyed in the form of starters, mains and dessert. Freshly squeezed juices, made from locally harvested fruits, are served as guests are seated. Faber wouldn’t be the same without wine, and luckily for patrons, the Avondale range is always in stock here.
A plate of food tells many stories, from the growth stages of an ingredient to its fruition, to the chef who designed the menu, prepared the meal and plated it, to the guest who marvels at what is placed before them. The process is complex and worthy of appreciation, from the sourcing of nourishing ingredients, to the creativity shown in the kitchen. Avondale has well established ethos as the pioneer of premium, award winning South African wines, produced organically and biodynamically. Faber, too, is a responsible, sustainability driven restaurant focused on supporting organic, free range and low carbon footprint producers.
Guests at Faber can order from the a la carte menu, or opt for a set six course tasting menu, with or without wine pairings. Starters range from carpaccio to ceviche, all consisting of complex flavour combinations, which are elevated when paired with a glass of Avondale wine. Mains are a luxurious offering of a wholesome meal. The dessert menu is all about aromatic fruit based dishes, made using classic cooking techniques.
Many of the outstanding decor features have been crafted from resources on the farm or up cycled from the Grieve family stores. Tables, planters and counters were made from stone pine harvested from the estate decades ago after a fire shaped Avondale’s future. The dramatic, turn of the century wooden arches which were collected years ago by John Grieve Senior now grace the bar and Tasting Gallery areas, having been lovingly restored and artistically incorporated in a contemporary design. The “living wall” planters with seasonal foliage bring the great outdoors inside, and create a setting that is simultaneously natural and sophisticated.
Avondale’s Eco Wine Safari is for those who’d like to explore the vineyards of Avondale, see the magic of the farm and the eco friendly production process. With nature’s stamp of approval, guests can sip on wine made on the farm, as well as taste the grapes from the vineyard and visit the state of the art gravity flow cellar, constructed three storeys underground in the cool depths of a natural dry river bed.
While watching the incarnation of Avondale’s ethos, Terra Est Vita “Soil Is Life” , you’ll get a glimpse of the Duck Mobile used to transport their famous pest controlling ducks to different parts of the estate , and visit the fruit and vegetable garden, which provides some of the fresh, seasonal and organic produce that is used at Faber.
The restaurant is open for lunch every Wednesday to Sunday, for dinner every Thursday to Saturday, and the menu is ever changing and seasonal menu. Vegetarian, vegan, dairy and gluten free options are available upon request when making a reservation at Faber.