Anyone for vegetable samoosas, Delta rolls and paaperbites livened with fruit blatjang and avocado, or malva pudding lapped in sour fig sauce? If so, visit Fyndraai and discover what this untranslatable word actually means.
Fyndraai Restaurant has a very unique and local twist on popular Franschhoek restaurants. Situated on the Solms-Delta Wine Estate, it offers a modern take on traditional Cape cuisine whilst showcasing the history of the area. Click here for menu details - the cuisine like its adventurous wines and atmospheric farmstead, lives up to the Solms-Delta claim of being proudly Hiervandaan (‘from this place’).
From the glass floor affording a view of the archaeological substructure of a 1740 wine cellar to the innovative menu of traditional Cape Food, Fyndraai Restaurant is a fine Cape kitchen where culinary heritage meets modern innovation.
Dishes explore the diverse culinary heritage of the Cape, uniting European, Asian and African flavours in a fusion of tradition and creativity. Syrups and sauces enliven veldkos; elements of Afrikaner boerekos, with its strong ‘Cape Malay’ (slave) influences, are blended with ingredients favoured by the Khoi nomads who lived in the Franschhoek Valley thousands of years ago. All appetisingly plated for maximum eye and taste appeal.
The new restaurant is part of a larger conservation initiative on the estate called the Dik Delta Fynbos Culinary Gardens, part of a greater 15ha fynbos and renosterveld park currently under development. A nursery is in the process of being established to propagate the most edible indigenous flora and so that Shaun Schoeman, the chef at Fyndraai, will be able to pick fresh local ingredients for his daily dishes.
Fyndraai is built into the site of the farm’s original wine cellar, and upon entering you step onto a glass floor exposing the original foundations, uncovered during extensive archaeological diggings.
Initially, it might feel a little insecure, but to hide those early layers and methods of construction would be to miss the opportunity of building on a tangible past. Besides, the idea is not entirely revolutionary. Foodies with long memories will remember the glass floor over pieces of porcelain and other artefacts that was introduced by Etienne Bonthuys in the premises now occupied by Ginja.
As for hygiene, dismiss the idea that the ancient stones will grow mould. A high-tech ventilation mechanism pulls positive air flow through the underfloor area and out again, ensuring that the foundations always remain dry.
There are no tablecloths (they would hide the underfloor view). Nor do place-settings intrude. Simple placemats are set with unpretentious cutlery and plain white china that will not detract from the white-walled traditional ambience.
Lovingly restored 19th Century photographs of the people of the region, blended with colour shots of today’s farm workers (350 in total) decorate the walls of Fyndraai Restaurant. These are complemented by panels that identify and explain the construction of the exposed foundations, in the style of the adjoining museum.
Solms-Delta has become synonymous with genuine upliftment. In keeping with this policy, all waitrons have been recruited from the resident farmworker families or from the Franschhoek area, many of whom have lived on the farm ‘sommer van altyd’ (just since forever). Eager, friendly and smiling, they have undergone intensive training and really believe in the Solms philosophy that what is most local is most lekker.
Fyndraai is open seven days a week from 9am to 5pm. From 10am to noon drinks and snacks only are served, from noon till 5pm lunch is served (kitchen closes 4pm). Set menus are available for groups – booking required.
For those wishing to picnic in the Cape winelands, the estate offers appetising picnic baskets from Fyndraai restaurant for R145 per person with delicious vegetarian options. Contents typically include basil pesto marinated farm vegetables with chive crème fraiche; bacon and onion potato slaai with vinaigrette; smoked Franschhoek trout with caper berries and fresh cream, and chicken tandoori with cucumber and honey mustard yoghurt. Private picnic spots are spread out along the estate’s enchanting riverside forest, with safe areas for kids to swim and Dad to do some fly fishing! Click here for details and to see our picnic menu. Pre-booking essential. To book a table at Fyndraai Restaurant, please contact Solms-Delta Wine Estate and speak to Henry or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Picnics are available from September to April.
Or call us on 021 874 3937 ext 115.
For reviews of Fyndraai restaurant click here.