A fresh, extensive summer menu has been created by InterContinental Johannesburg OR Tambo’s executive chef Yoshan Naidu and his team, for the Quills Restaurant, in line with changing consumer food trends and to suit the varied local and international travellers who visit the restaurant.
Chef Yoshan, who has been at the helm for two years, says the new menu includes input from his chefs and front-of-house staff and is a collaboration the whole team is proud of. He notes a key inspiration for the menu is to deliver local tastes without overdoing it, incorporating Asian fusion.
“We’ve created wholesome food, featuring local produce and a fresh and simple approach to our dishes – this appeals to our guests who tend to be either having their last meal before leaving South Africa, or enjoying their first as they enter. They want a touch of local taste, but they don’t want to be overwhelmed.”
The summer menu features some new dishes and some tweaks on existing favourites. Starters include textures of tomato, with roasted asparagus and soft poached egg; smoked chicken breast tossed with bulgur wheat, salad ingredients and a mint and lime dressing; a modernised take on the roasted spiced Mediterranean vegetable and couscous salad.
Past winners on the starter salad include the crocodile carpaccio with pickled peppadew salsa; a micro salad and a tomato, chilli jam; and the poached prawn cocktail. A hot starter that made an enhanced comeback is grilled peri-peri chicken livers in a tomato and chilli concasse, with ujeqe steamed bread.
The renowned risottos include pea-infused risotto, with pickled green tomatoes, a mint gremolata and goat’s cheese; and mushroom and pulled-duck risotto with pickled and dried mushrooms, a gremolata and grana Padano.
New dishes in the main course menu include dukkah spiced slow-roasted lamb rump, with fondant potatoes, baby carrots, pea puree and chimichurri oil; gnocchi al’arrabbiata with mint pesto, ricotta and parmesan shaving; pepper crusted beef fillet with roasted onion, kohlrabi puree, and honey mustard green beans; five-spice pork belly with a teriyaki marinated pork chop, Korean BBQ pulled pork, samp arancini, and vegetables; pan-fried ginger and chilli infused duck, with baby carrots, pulled duck croquette with a puree and duck and thyme jus; and pan-seared sea bass, with tomato and basil puree, tabouleh and a chilli and aubergine puree.
New desserts include the fastest seller – vegan mango and coconut panna cotta with a pistachio praline and fresh mango salsa.
Other new items, roasted strawberry and rhubarb semifreddo with a berry micro salad and candied ginger shards and Matcha panna cotta with salted dark chocolate mousse, candied cashew nuts and a berry micro salad.
Yoshan is proud of the restaurant’s wine selection from Tsogo Sun Hotels’ Collector’s Wines, which incorporate exceptional wines acquired from South Africa’s prestigious wine auctions, together with wines from the Michelangelo International Wine Awards, which the group sponsors.
He says the restaurant’s sommeliers and waiters understand the value of pairing excellent wines with the different dishes on the menu.