There is something really special about the West Coast. Far away from French influences with very few gables in sight, this is quintessential SA coastal territory. Wide open skies and people who greet you like a long lost friend, the whole experience at Hilda’s Kitchen is there to help one to unwind and get in touch with your real self.
My real self includes plenty of good food and wine experiences and one of the best in this area is to be had at Hilda’s Kitchen on the Groote Post farm close to Darling. Here you will find chef Debbie Mc Laughlin’ s excellent cooking, fuss free, the way I like it, with robust country flavours in good portions. Not much can be better than spending a lazy lunch there outside on the terrace under large umbrellas or inside when things get blustery.
The Manor House is a treasure in itself and has some gorgeous Cape Dutch antique furniture pieces. The restaurant is named after Hildagonda Duckitt, the matriarch of the Duckitt family, some of whose recipes feature in international cooking books. It is very child friendly and the kids will just love the duck families walking around.
Some of Debbie’s summer dishes include watermelon, feta and pumpkin seed salad, kale, chorizo and peppadew tart using her fabulous pastry, panko crusted potato cakes with oven roasted salmon and slow roasted pork belly with Asian inspired peach salad. The excellent wines of the farm are available at cellar door prices, a great idea. Don’t miss the Peach Melba tart with homemade ice cream, one of favourite ways to put on weight.
- Bookings are essential at 022 492 2825
- Note: There is a good dirt road leading to the farm after you come off the R27
Words: Greg Landman
As the wine writer for Country Life magazine for the last 15 years, Greg has met and interviewed more than 150 of the country’s top wine makers. His articles offer unique insights into where to eat, what to drink, and where to go all over the Western Cape. With his dining companion Beryl Ormsby Browne, he has also reviewed more than 60 country restaurants for the magazine and has been a reviewer for the prestigious Eat Out Guide for 12 years. His passion for everything the winelands has to offer has led him into the world of wine tours. To find out more, visit his website Magic Grape Tours.