For more than two decades the annual Diners Club Winelist Awards have celebrated the art of food and wine by recognising restaurants that offer diners the perfect glass of wine to compliment their meal. Over the 20 years that it has been in existence, it has become a highly sought-after symbol of excellence and achievement.
One of the recent stars of this award is Restaurant Mosaic, just outside Pretoria. Having one of the finest wine cellars in the country, they can boast some of the best and rarest wines from not only South Africa but also fine wines from across the globe.
The Mosaic experience (and believe me, it is an experience) all comes together when these wines are paired with the culinary works of are that emerge from Chantel Dartnall’s kitchen. Finding the perfect wine to pair with each dish is in the hands and palate of Germain Lehodey, restaurant Sommelier. Quite a daunting task, with such an extensive and well-stocked cellar to choose from, but allowing him to create pairings that are world-class.
Restaurant Mosaic has been again been recognised by Diner’s Club, who have awarded the Diamond Award to their winelist in their annual winelist awards. They also netted the coveted Best Diamond Award, making the restaurant the best in Gauteng. Winelists are judged by professional critic David Hughes, and is measured on the following criteria:
- The basis of the wine selection (35%)
- Balance the wine selection (30%)
- Winelist presentation (25%)
- Suitability of the list in terms of the cuisine offered (10%)
The goal is not to have a list with only expensive wines. Rather, the focus of the awards are on:
- Creativity of the list
- Wine choices
- How the selection enhances the restaurant’s dining experiece
- Selection and number of wines by the glass
Diamond Awards are only given to those winelists that score 90% or above in the above criteria.
Restaurant Mosaic was started in 2006 by the current head chef, Chantel Dartnall, after she began her career working for Michelin three-star UK chef Nico Ladenis. Chantel has been named South African Chef of the Year and has consecutively been featured as one of South Africa’s the Top 20 Restaurants in Eat Out Magazine.
Their sommelier Germain Lehodey comes with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the food and beverage services. He started his career as sommelier at the world-renowned restaurant, Tour d’Argent in Paris. He was also a finalist in the Best Sommelier of the World competition, and has lectured at the Wits Hotel School as well as the Cape Wine Acadamy.
Massive congratulations from the entire Great Domaines team to everyone at Restaurant Mosaic! Here’s to many more years as the top of the crop in Gauteng.
Pictured: Moses Magwaza (Apprentice Sommelier), Chantel Dartnall (Executive Chef) and Germain Lehodey of Restaurant Mosaic accepting their award in 2014, where they were also awarded the Best Diamond Award and named Best in Gauteng.
[Source: Diner’s Club]