Franschhoek’s latest culinary destination presents a sensory awakening

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A New Culinary Journey Begins

With the arrival of spring and its refreshing breath of renewal, an exciting gastronomic adventure is about to unfold in South Africa’s culinary capital. Eleven, an aptly named restaurant, is preparing to make its debut on the lively Huguenot Street in Franschhoek, a town celebrated for its gourmet delights. Led by the esteemed chef and owner Ryan Shell, along with his team from the acclaimed Ōku and Yama eateries, Eleven is set to captivate diners with a sensory experience that captures the spirit of spiritual awakening.

The restaurant’s distinctive name is derived from its location, infusing the building with an atmosphere of equilibrium and harmony. For Ryan, Eleven represents the realization of a long-held dream and aims to deliver a truly unique dining experience in a town he has grown to adore. When the opportunity to acquire the iconic address presented itself, he seized it to transform his vision into reality.

A Harmonious Blend of Design and Inspiration

Combining industrial elements with artistic panache, Eleven’s ambience exudes a stylish, relaxed vibe. The thoughtful use of wood, raw brick, and burnt copper perfectly accentuates the custom-made furnishings created by talented Cape artisans, exhibiting a seamless fusion of traditional and modern aesthetics.

The restaurant’s culinary philosophy draws on Ryan’s extensive gastronomic journey through top UK establishments and Southern Africa’s five-star properties, presenting a contemporary global spin on classic themes. This will be the third Franschhoek venture for the team behind Ōku and Yama Asian Eatery, whose successful 2020 launches garnered rave reviews and flawless ratings on TripAdvisor. Eleven’s prime location situates it near its sister restaurants and an assortment of the town’s outstanding dining venues, further solidifying Franschhoek’s status as a haven for food and wine aficionados.

A Menu Rooted in Local Flavor and Seasonality

Ryan’s deep understanding of the local culinary scene stems from his formative years working under the guidance of esteemed chef Margot Janse at Le Quartier Français and his time as head chef at the renowned Haute Cabrière restaurant. At Eleven, Ryan’s personal experience seamlessly merges with his team’s expertise to offer an exquisite menu of small plates celebrating a hyper-seasonal approach to ingredients.

“Our chosen format provides an intriguing and diverse dining experience that truly highlights locally foraged ingredients in an environmentally sustainable manner,” says Ryan. The menu promises to be a delicious, ever-changing feast that harmonizes with the shifting seasons. Initial offerings include truffled goats’ cheese with pickled beets, citrus gel, and walnut soil; smoked springbok tartare with egg yolk, raisin, and caper purée; and parmesan gnocchi accompanied by aubergine, pine nuts, rocket, and tomato aioli.

Additional tantalizing dishes feature prawn tortellini in a bacon velouté with peas and basil; oxtail risotto with mascarpone, apple crackling, and a sublime touch of lime oil; and slow-roasted pumpkin with couscous, orange, burnt onion, and gorgonzola. Moreover, patrons can savor poached Cape bream with fennel, saffron, and vanilla; braised Angus brisket with truffled pomme purée, pickled cabbage, and buchu jus; and irresistible desserts such as salted chocolate cremeux, lemon thyme panna cotta, and whipped brie with pecan nuts, tonka bean, and caramelized pineapple.

A Wine List Celebrating Diversity and Tradition

The carefully crafted wine selection at Eleven showcases its commitment to variety. Focusing on Franschhoek wineries and captivating South African expressions, the list also features other cherished Cape favorites. In essence, Eleven aspires to awaken the senses and usher in a new era of culinary enlightenment.

To join the early-bird reservations list, email [email protected] Members of this waitlist will be notified as soon as bookings open.

Environmentalist and Outdoor Enthusiast. Amanda is a nature-loving, energetic, and enthusiastic environmentalist who has dedicated her life to exploring and protecting Cape Town's stunning natural landscapes. She is an experienced hiker, wildlife enthusiast, and advocate for sustainable tourism.

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