Supporting local fresh produce

Berea Mail
Garden produces first crop
Lauren Walford

THE first harvest of vegetables was gathered from the Congella Park food garden this week and will be sold to local restaurants to help the homeless men living in the park make a living.

Jennifer Rampersad from the Parks Department was very pleased with the yield and the quality of the vegetables which have been grown, and said local restaurants, Parc and Glenwood Bakery, were eager to buy the produce.

congella park fresh produce
Photo: Berea Mail

Read the full article on local fresh produce at the source.

 

 

parc. off

Noodle was here blogged about parc.

So take the ex-sous chef from 9th Avenue Bistro and put him in Glenwood next to an artisanal bakery and the result is what perfect saturday mornings are made of.
The menu is tasty and seasonal and from-scratch loveliness. I love the Not-So-Benedict (always get an extra slice of toast) and Mr T swears by the warm Sweet Potato & Ginger Chicken Salad.

Read the full blog post at the source.

Nuts about Parc’s nosh

The Mercury, Good Life, 12 July 2013
Frank Chemaly

“I love peanut butter. As kids we would make “gobstopper” sandwiches for school – hunks of bread spread thick with the stuff, often tarted up with honey, syrup or apricot jam. Other kids thought they were posh because their mommies served plastic pink viennas with lashings of tomato sauce – in a roll too. I still shudder at the though today. Others boasted banana and condensed milk – horrors. But the humble peanut always got my vote. It’s still the ultimate comfort food.

So when at PARC recently I was offered a peanut butter milkshake, I jumped at the opportunity. Not even the array of freshly squeezed fruit juices could dissuade me. And delicious it was – a meal in a glass.

Recently opened, Parc is the brainchild or Brett Gentles who was the sous chef at Ninth Avenue Bistro. It’s there to celebrate the fresh, the organic and unusual taste sensations in a casual and relaxed eating ambience. It’s another string to Glenwood’s culinary reinvention that’s helping tip the scales in favour of the south side of Berea Road. It’s popular too and it offers free wifi.

The menu is chalked up on the board depending on what’s in season and cooking in the chef’s head. Breakfasts are certainly interesting. Think banana bread French toast, fresh banana, roasted cashews, yoghurt and honey – that’s quite some combination. Or the not so Benedict – poached eggs, lemon Hollandaise and capers, served on sweet potato and rosemary bread. All breads come from the Glenwood Bakery next door.

Lunch consisted of a selection of salads, gourmet open sandwiches, and a couple of soups ideal for wintry weather. There is coq au vin on garlic mash for those who want something heartier.

Salads might include roast beetroot, radish, apple, lettuce, avo and lentils with goat’s cheese; or warm winter veg, quinoa, orange, herbs, feta and pumpkin seeds. Yes, there’s a multitude of flavours on the plate.

Maureen’s salad of sweet potato, gingered chicken, rocket and coriander in a soy and chilli dressing was a winner. definitely the pick of the day. I opted for the tarte – flaky pastry topped with balsamic onions, pan seared tomatoes, feta and basil, with a salad of mixed greens. It sounds similar to a breakfast I make for a vegetarian friend, except instead of flaky pastry she gets plain toast. It was most enjoyable if a shade sweet with all those natural sugars coming to the fore. Don opted for an open sandwich with hummus, grilled aubergine, onion sprouts, watercress and goat’s cheese with a beetroot and carrot slaw. The sandwich hit the right spot, the slaw perhaps needing something to liven it up. But plenty of imaginative and interesting cooking.

Cakes too are a speciality, supplied by Lucy’s Cake Shop. The cheesecake had been flattened already, so lunch was rounded off with “yummy slices” – that’s a brownie type base topped with a layer of soft fudgy filling covered in chocolate with nuts and fruit thrown in for good measure. Delicious, but oh so rich. Coffees – they use Colombo – were first class.”

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Parcing off

The Sunday Tribune, Sunday Magazine, 9 June 2013
by Ingrid Shevlin

“Something different is the newly opened Parc Cafe in Glenwood, next door to the Glenwood artisanal bakery. According to its website, it aims to “offer a social, casual dining experience that captures the essence of Durban culture”.

They proudly serve Colombo coffee, bread from the Glenwood Bakery and Lucy’s cakes (Lucy being cake boss Lucy Markewicz).

Parc Cafe is an attractive venue with a contemporary feel that still manages to be homely. The vibe is warm and our waitress, Zora, was superb. There are tables indoors and on the pavement. Parc is owned by Brett Gentles (the chef) and his sister Lara. Brett is Christina Martin-trained and his extensive work experience includes a stint as sous chef at 9th Avenue Bistro.

My friend Meleney and I were there for lunch one Monday and found Parc surprisingly packed and buzzy – for a new restaurant and a Monday, that is.

The menu is chalked on a board on the wall and because they serve food in unusual combinations, and I didn’t want to get anything wrong, I painstakingly copied it down in my trusty notebook, only to find it is on the website (www.parc-cafe.co.za). But, if I compared my notebook with the website menu, it’s clear Brett tweaks his options.

Meleney was a little dubious about some food combos but we were pleasantly surprised. Parc has about nine breakfast items, the most interesting being banana bread French toast with fresh banana, cashews and honey; pork sausage, eggs, mixed greens, apple chilli chutney, toast and onion pickle; and Eggs Benedict (bacon, poached eggs, lemon hollandaise and capers on Adam’s potato and Rosemary bread).

Salad options include roast beetroot, radish, green apple, lettuce, avocado and lentils with goat’s cheese vinaigrette; and grilled aubergine, baby spinach, cucumber, roast butternut, fresh grapes, mint, coriander, basil and toasted seeds with cumin and yoghurt dressing. Phew.

There are two soup options, the weirdest of which is a wintermelon and coconut gazpacho with ginger and chocolate. And there are three open sandwich choices. I wont’ share the ingredients but you know by now that Brett believes the more, the better.

We decided to order three items and share: Sweet potato cake topped with poached eggs and served with tomato relish, brown mushrooms, rocket, crème fraiche and toasted pumpkin seeds; sweet potato and gingered chicken salad with rocket and coriander, drizzled with a soy-chilli dressing; and quiche with a sautéed kale, red onions and preserved lemon served with greens dressed with brown butter vinaigrette.

All of this was amazingly good, especially the quiche, which Meleney had originally scorned. For dessert we had croissant with lemon curd and fruit butter and one of Lucy’s meringue and hazelnut cakes served in a muffin case. Divine.

Prices are very reasonable, with major items ranging from R45 – R65. The bill came to a modest R210.”

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Check out the awesome new Parc. Cafe

Happiness is… blogged about parc.

So last week I stumbled across another new Durban cafe – and what a gem it turned out to be! It’s right next door to the Glenwood Bakery, which is a relatively quiet little spot so it’s a great escape from the hustle of everywhere else. Great decor: simple, clean, great colours and furniture. Free WiFi. Great people: Brett Gentles, the friendly owner and “one of the best creative chefs to come out of Durban” (to quote an article in the Mercury!), has worked at the 9th Avenue Bistro and has now started Parc. Cafe with his sister Lara. And the foooooood…

Read the full blog post at the source.