Although John has garnered many accolades for both red and whites over the years, his magical touch with bubbly was evident in the various Silverthorn vintages we enjoyed together. The Green Man 2011 is a Blanc de Blanc style which was the overall winner of the 6 Nations Challenge. To highlight the variations in vintage, the 5-star John Platter Green Man 2010 (which spent 30 months on the lees) was paired with Prawn and Smoked salmon ravioli, dill cream sauce, coriander and micro greens.
This magnificent dish was a worthy companion to the bubbles and was all thanks to the man sitting across the table, Chef Archie. Having recently joined the Steenberg team after a three and a half year stint as Head Chef at Singita, Archie began his career as a barman back in Scotland. It was only after an emergency that required he lend a hand in the kitchen that he knew he had found his calling.
“There were three other Colins in the kitchen, so they defaulted to calling me by my second name Archie,” he laughs. The name, plus the passion for food, stuck.
Archie’s approach is all about exciting palates with interesting combinations of taste, flavour and texture. Cooked simply and presented beautifully, next up was the slow-cooked pork belly, with butternut puree, cauliflower rice with ash, baby carrots and blue cheese jus. John opened the Jewel Box Brut 2010, a special cuvee of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir and barrel-matured to add richness and texture, perfectly complimenting the pork belly.