After spending three weeks working and dining in some of the world’s best restaurants in South East Asia, Executive Chef Virgil Kahn from Delaire Graff’s Indochine Restaurant has launched a new Asian-influenced menu.

While on his inspirational trip, Chef Virgil visited Wanakarn, a beach resort and spa situated north of Phuket offering authentic Thai cuisine , and Saint Pierre, a one Michelin star restaurant in Singapore featuring contemporary French dining with an Asian flair. He tasted his way through the 25-course ’emoji’ menu at Gaggan in Bangkok, a restaurant which has held its top spot on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurant List for four consecutive years. He also visited Nahm and Paste in Bangkok and Belon and Ronin in Hong Kong, as well as many street food stalls.

“I was struck by the discipline, respect and humility of the people I met and the Buddhist way of life in Thailand, it’s a culture that permeates the kitchen”, said Kahn. The chef has now created a menu that incorporates the innovative combinations and trends that he encountered. His new signature dish, for example, brings an original twist to a dish he ate during his travels – an escabeche of tuna lightly cured in a ginger-chilli pickling liquid, served with salmon and ginger floss, caviar, Thai basil, caramelised onion and garlic.

Chef Virgil was also impressed and inspired by the restaurants’ passion for fresh, quality produce. He said, “My hosts placed vast importance on the source of their ingredients, fastidiously researching suppliers, even foraging their own, and made the most of each and every part of an ingredient”. Indochine is lucky enough to have access to Delaire Graff Estate’s own greenhouse, where chefs can pick herbs, microgreens and vegetables.

While the restaurant’s new menu is clearly influenced by the Asian flavours that Chef Virgil experienced, the menu stays true to its location and incorporates the rich inspiration that’s to be found in the Cape – a unique Afro-Asian culinary concept. For more information, visit the website.

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