Welcome to the very first edition of the 10and5 Supper Club! Sindi-Leigh McBride, Jabu Nadia Newman and Tyla Mason set the tone with their creative responses (in words, photographs and illustrations respectively) to the evening they spent together at Cape Town’s newly opened Mulberry & Prince.
Subsidize my Supper by Sindi-Leigh McBride
My colleague had gushed about the gorgeousness of the restaurant a few days before Between 10and5 fortuitously emailed me about their new Supper Club. The premise is “a quirky take on Come Dine With Me”, where creatives from different fields get grouped together to go out and review a restaurant by producing some form of creative response to the meal and experience. Mind you, I don’t self-identify as a creative (I am a researcher) so I was tickled by the attraction of a fine dining experience, after a 9-5 of reading and writing, and the opportunity to pontificate on the contents of my plate.
I was not disappointed. Mulberry & Prince is beautiful. Lush dusty pink velvet chairs and marble tables. Exposed bricks and glossy metals. Copper, leather, stained glass – the place is an eyeball feast. Small and inviting (they have pink doors, I mean come on), the atmosphere is very cute, as are the waitresses. The service proved to be impeccable but of course, we were there for the food right, not the aesthetics, and for the most part, we weren’t disappointed.
The restaurant is the brainchild of foodie friends, co-owners and chefs Cornel Mostert and Cynthia Rivera, who met during their studies at The Culinary Institute of America. The waitress described the place as “New York” style dining. Think J.Lo in her madam’s coat, Maid in Manhattan kinda New York, not hotdogs in the park.
Unless you are part of the 0.5% of the population raised on culinary artistry, the menu is pretty pretentious so be sure to ask your waitress what everything is. As mentioned, they are wonderful, and wisely asked everyone at the table about allergies, since the dish descriptions are quite high end and potentially misleading. If you do not want to sound dumb, or your tongue gets heavy when trying to pronounce foreign words, make sure you have enough data to Google whats what. They advocate for shared meals, and with an average of four starter options and twelve mains, you have options to share with your company while bonding. That is what we did and this what we had:
Oysters: Jabu said they weren’t fresh because they weren’t jiggly enough and I’ve never really been a fan but for some reason these were really good, maybe it was the ‘yuzu mignonette’.
Stracciatella, lovage, charred bread: Definitely the weirdest. Stracciatella is like creamy, stringy cheese that tastes like nothing and feels like a glob of poached egg white, swimming in deliciously tart green juice, on a lump of chewy almost-burnt bread. Interesting, but odd.
Lamb ribs, spices, raw honey: Highlight of my whole life.
Hake, ajo blanco, white beans, kale: A curious sauce to go with the pillowy cloud-like fish hiding underneath a giant kale canopy.
Chicory, anchovy, walnut, drunken pecorino: The second weirdest dish. The anchovy and the chicory are both very overwhelming tastes, but they offset each other surprisingly well. Drunken pecorino is a cute name.
Chocolate cake (made from 70% guanaja chocolate, and laden with fresh cream): Like a hug from Idris Elba, it’s that good.
Drinks: They’re still waiting on their liquor licence, so for the time being, BYOB is encouraged but corkage is sneakily charged for. Thank you to Tyla for putting me onto Woolworths Sangria, that went down very well.
Jabu and Tyla were both great company so I appreciate Between10&5 for putting us at a table together on a random Tuesday night. I also tip my hat off to our esteemed host for having such a creative spirit of entrepreneurship, or to put it differently, for subsidizing our supper with R100 at a restaurant with R85 starters. It was quite a boef, but luckily the night was an all-round treat so I’m not mad.
When I got home that evening, taste buds sated and a little woozy after having gone through two bottles of wine while deconstructing the art on my plate, I ran into my neighbour. She was exhausted after spending the night cooking for Meals on Wheels. I asked what she had cooked that evening and she replied that with meat so expensive these days, she’s been making soup and soya meals for the poor which, after my sensational supper, left me feeling quite existentially grossed out.
You can locate a Meals on Wheels branch here.
Photographs by Jabu Nadia Newman
Illustrations by Tyla Mason
Want to be part of the 10and5 Supper Club? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us what you do!