Fermier is an attempt to create a restaurant which in future can become completely self-sustainable by creating an entire “ecosystem” from the fish and vegetables to the livestock, that suits the restaurant’s idea of responsible, conscientious farming (and restaurant) where even “waste” is turned into a functional part of the cycle.
In keeping with the idea of responsible involvement, the building has grown “organically” where soil from the area has been used to build rammed earth walls, poles as the skeleton and recycled wood for the cladding and doors, thus creating a “farm feel”.
To complete the feel, all the crockery, tables and chairs have each been designed and handmade by artisans from the Karoo Yard. The crockery were designed and produced from pottery studio and the tables and chairs were specifically crafted by the carpenter.
As for the menu, the idea is to close the gap between produce, farm, and the final product. Guests can see the produce growing, where it comes from and the versatility of each product. The restaurant strives to involve producers with the same philosophy about produce and create a dining experience where not only the tender cuts are used, but rather the whole animal (head to tail cooking).
The menu includes two different beef courses. The first, a piece of short rib, is presented with cauliflower purée, black garlic, hazelnuts, dehydrated cauliflower and truffle shavings, while the second is perfectly tender slices of sirloin artfully presented under a covering of wilted red cabbage, rhubarb and a deep rich jus complementing the pink sirloin.
This is followed by a cheese course that once again speaks of elegance and refinement. Dessert on this occasion consists of fried apple slices with apple and smoked-raisin custard, almond custard, quince purée, ginger crumble, burnt butter ice cream and an almond-sesame brandy snap. Despite its intricate presentation, it still manages to be comforting and delicious.
Karoo Yard, 141 Lynnwood Road, Corner of Albeth and Lynnwood Road, The Willows, Pretoria.