There’s definitely little truth to believing that once you’ve been to more than one wine farm, you’ve seen them all.
Named after the 17th-century founder Catharina Ras, Tryn is a surprisingly contemporary Cape Town restaurant located in the breathtaking Constantia Valley Winelands right by the Norval Foundation.
For someone who lives in the city, arriving at Steenberg and the vibe you feel stepping into the restaurant immediately gives you a sense of being on a holiday even though you’re still so close to home. The Tryn experience has so much to offer, from their fine dining offerings served in colourful, bold and modern dining rooms to chic AlFresco style picnics in their manicured gardens surrounded by unmatched views.
Expertly paired with the best Steenberg wines, the cuisine at Tryn is refined fine dining with the added touch of local and international flavour profiles that blend perfectly. Greeted with an aperitif of 1682 Pinot Noir Cap Classique and an impressive amuse bouche of beetroot and pear puree with balsamic reduction, we buckled up for the flavourful journey that laid ahead.
We opted for the three-course Winter special on offer which you can enjoy for lunch and dinner. This deal includes your amuse-bouche, a starter, one main course, a dessert and Tryn’s signature chocolate truffle to finish. So worth it.
Starting off strong, we had the oysters served with a shallot vinaigrette and artichoke fritters with rocket, spring onion, parmesan salad, truffle vinaigrette and aioli. Little surprise, the oysters paired with the 1682 Pinot Noir Cap Classique was an incredible sensory experience. The artichoke fritters, which I’m sure receives a passing glance by most diners, were warm, flavourful and something unexpected that deserves more appreciation for being so great. Kind of like that constant friend we take for granted who always shows up on time.
For the main, we went big. Pulled beef and red wine jus with homemade tagliatelle, roasted cherry tomatoes and spinach. The tagliatelle was executed perfectly, the beef was just sumptuous, this dish is an all-around win. My only comment would be about portion size because it is a rich dish packed with flavour, a smaller portion would be perfect. But is a sizable portion ever really something to complain about? Not at all. Pork belly with bok choi, root vegetable, ginger and pineapple relish and a miso caramel jus was the second main on our table and to say the least, this dish deserves a standing ovation. In my partner’s words, “I’ve only had pork belly this good in Beijing” and that says it all. The miso caramel jus, the vegetables, everything works together beautifully and we will be going back for more.
The mains menu also offers an ethically sourced fish meal that comes with two different options. What stood out to us about this was the wooden fish with a QR code attached that you receive once seated. When you scan the code, you can read the story about the person in the local community who sourced the fish. We found this to be a really heartwarming and unpretentious way of supporting local and giving back.
Somehow, we managed to save space for dessert. We ordered the crème brûlée, with Angostura and orange and white chocolate biscotti as well as the almond and lemon frangipane with white chocolate cremeaux, matcha ice cream and candied zest.
The 2017 Steenberg Catharina Bordeaux-style red blend and the 2017 Steenberg Merlot paired well with both mains and added a fragrant, indulgent experience to the signature Tryn chocolate truffle the meal ended off with. Overall, dining at Tryn at Steenberg is an experience to add to your list of local travels and eats. I will definitely be going back for another glass of 2017 Steenberg Catharina Bordeaux-style red blend soon.