Jozi’s newest fine dining spot is Five Hundred, where David Higgs of Rust en Vrede fame is the head chef. I got a chance to try it out some time back, and it was a really special dining experience.
Upon arrival, you are shown where to park by someone whose sole purpose is to guide you into the parkade. A 5 series BMW is waiting for you so you don’t have to walk the 100m from the parkade to reception. When you arrive, you’re greeted by name if you’ve made a reservation, and then escorted up to the restaurant, which has its own private entrance.
Five Hundred almost feels like a secret, members only spot. It’s very secluded and only seats about 30 people. The lighting is dim, and the decor is dark. There is also a private dining room overlooking the wine cellar which I’d love to book out one day.
The service is on another level. Forget those tacky handbag hooks, you’ll be given a small stool on which to place your handbag. The waiters are extremely attentive and if you so much as lift your hand to pour yourself some more water, they’ll be at your side instantly to do it for you.
By now, you’ll know I am a sucker for bread. I’ve been given a choice of breads before, but never a choice of butters, intricately plated too! The bread was fresh, warm and crusty and I loved choosing between salted, smoked, goat’s milk and unsalted.
|Pressed west coast crayfish with Hermanus seaweed and nasturtium mayonnaise- delicious|
|I didn’t write down the official name for this, but it was something along the lines of a brinjal mousse with a preserved baby brinjal and candied brinjal|
|This was my main which was the fish option. Although I thought the plating was exquisite, I didn’t really enjoy the flavours much.|
|I loved dessert: eggless chocolate mousse with apple mint ice cream, coffee meringue and crispy garden mint|
I particularly liked this touch at the end of our meal, which came complimentary.
When we left, we were given some fresh honeycomb and goats cheese to take home and enjoy the next day. Rishav put it in his pocket and forgot about it. You can only imagine the situation when he wore the same jacket two nights later and put his hand in his pocket- haha!
So.. if you love fine dining, or you have a special occasion to celebrate and want to feel like royalty, definitely try Five Hundred.
They’re open for dinner only Tue- Sat. Call 011 292 6000 to book, or visit www.saxon.co.za