Life on a table recipe #21 – Balsamic glazed pear and blue cheese saladJanuary 19, 2017
Otjimbingwe – the capital that never wasJanuary 20, 2017
Text & photos Sanet van Zijl | Main photo ©Curious Kitchen
A fter a nearly three-hour-long lunchtime feast at JoJo’s including three starters, two mains and a dessert I sat there wondering how I was supposed to go home to the old eggs on toast routine. I guess that’s what make you appreciate fine dining, isn’t it?
The owner of JoJo’s, Christie Keulder, joined myself and 5 others for lunch during which he shared his abundant knowledge about food and the culinary industry with us. He runs the show (and believe me, that’s exactly what you’ll get on your plate) along with the head chef, David Thomas – Namibian Chef of the Year 2010 & 2011.
To me this was like experiencing an episode of Masterchef firsthand. It’s unbelievable how much cuisine has evolved. I’m talking hot ice creams, snows, savoury ice creams, gels, powders and not to mention liquid nitrogen creations.
Many fine dining establishments have impressive menus with names you can’t pronounce and many times you don’t know what exactly it is that you will be consuming. At Jojo’s, however, you won’t have that problem. They do fancy in an uncomplicated way. Take for example the dessert we had – the menu read “apricots, thyme and olive oil”. Sounds simple right? I thought that’s exactly what I’m going to see on my plate, but to my surprise it was so much more than that (see photo below). It even had a Namibian twist to it – the pana cotta was made from Oshikandela!
Each plate of food is like an adventure. You’ll find delicate slivers, cubes, spheres stacked on top of each other, with tiny finds underneath each big element. Each dish has many different textures, mixtures of hot and cold elements and pops of colour. You’ll find locally sourced produce on your plate and the best of seasonal fruits and veggies. Some dishes will leave you feeling refreshed, some will leave you feeling amazed and others are total comfort foods that you just can’t get enough of. The flavours are intense and unique, it’s a taste explosion! You might scratch your head when you hear about some of the food combinations they have, but once you taste it you’ll be glad you did. How does bacon and onion ice cream sound? I can tell you – it’s delicious!
With many of Windhoek’s fine dining restaurants having closed down or relocated this past year, JoJo’s has taken the lead when it comes to innovative, delicious cuisine. They have regular events with live music (keep an eye on their Facebook page) and their menu changes regularly, so you’ll always find something new and equally exciting to try. No wonder Christie called it the Curious Kitchen.
Below are some of the treats you can find on their NEW SUMMER MENU:
STARTER: Variations of cucumber, lime and watermelon
Features – lime gel; cucumber gel; lime, Greek yogurt & mint sorbet; herb cake
STARTER: Onion Tarte Tatin, Camembert and bacon
Features – onion pana cotta; bacon & onion ice cream; pickled mustard seeds; apple jam; bacon crumb; bacon dust; dehydrated onions
STARTER: Game terrine, truffle, port wine and brioche
Features – brioche; Gemsbok terrine; port jellies; truffle butter; truffle mousse; pickled mushrooms
MAIN: Bulgur wheat risotto, Swakopmund asparagus and hazelnut
Features – Bulgur wheat risotto; fresh asparagus; roasted hazelnuts
MAIN: Game fillet, Urbock beer, roasted malt and black cherry
Features – squid ink biscuit; barley crumb; Urbock glaze; beetroot mousse
DESSERT: Apricots, olive oil and thyme
Features – Thyme oil; apricots; apricot sorbet; meringues; apricot & thyme gel; thyme oil snow; Oshikandela & honey pana cotta