Well, I am back from my trip to South Africa and attending the fabulous 2011 Food Blogger Indaba! I met such inspirational people and the event has made me feel so positive and energised by the state of South African food and wine blogging in general that I can't wait to introduce you to more of our incredible home-grown talent right here on the Directory. Today it is the turn of Hennie and Maggie, the duo behind Batonage. They describe themselves as passionate foodies and wine lovers who keep a record of their adventures in food and wine at restaurants and wine farms in and around Cape Town for our viewing and reading pleasure. Let's ask them a few questions about themselves:
1. Where are you – in South Africa or out in the wide world?
In Cape Town South Africa
2. How long have you been blogging?
Since April 2010
3. What do you enjoy the most about food or wine blogging?
HENNIE: Networking with fellow bloggers and attending bloggers events. Its a whole new world that opened up and experiencing events that I wasnt aware of before.
MAGGIE: We've been "exposed" to quite a few unknown (to me) wines and wine makers.
4. Any downsides or frustrations?
HENNIE: Getting the actual website to work and look like I want it to look is a huge challenge. I have never been an IT person, cannot code in HTML and also do not really understand WordPress and all its features.
MAGGIE: My general laziness as this is not my "day job".
5. What or who are your inspirations to cook, drink and write?
HENNIE: To cook its definitely the chefs who’s restaurants I frequent who shows me delicate, beautiful dishes. To drink… too many to mention – I love, adore and love and adore great wine. I have a list of favourite producers that can go around the earth. To write… strangely enough Stephen King. I adore fiction, but simply cannot write it myself – not through lack of trying. Non fiction seems to be my forte.
MAGGIE: I'm always chasing the new, the unknown, the weird and the wonderful in the line of food and wine. Love trying to pair the wrong thing with the perfect dish. Writing-wise…recognition I suppose – even if it's just a "I've learnt something new" occasionally.
6. Where and when do you like to blog?
HENNIE: I tend to write best during office hours… but that doesn’t work out well with my day job. So I tend to blog late at night after my other half has gone to bed.
MAGGIE: Early mornings (I'm a morning person). Often I feel inspired out of the blue (mostly after a glass or 3).
7. What's your signature dish or favourite wine?
HENNIE: Favourite wine is definitely Jean Daneel Chenin Blanc… or perhaps its the Springfield Methode Ancienne Chardonnay… or no…
MAGGIE: Must be Jean Daneel Chenin Blanc, or anything from Springfield & Bouchard Finlayson and Lammershoek.
8. What other food or wine blogs do you read?
HENNIE: Cooksister (of course!), Pendock Uncorked, Winegoggle, Grape, Spit or Swallow, Whale Cottage, Relax with Dax and The Travelling Vineyard (when he updates it once every few months!)
MAGGIE: So boring, but I have to agree with Hennie!
9. Favourite restaurant?
10. For my last meal on this planet I would order…
HENNIE: a 5 course food and wine pairing, consisting of (in no particular order) pigs trotter from Bizerca, sweetbreads from The Roundhouse, sea urchin spaghetti from Mezzaluna, tomato sabayon from The Tasting Room and the chocolate nemesis from Societi Bistro, paired with wines from Jean Daneel, Springfield, Morgenster, Vergelegen, Bouchard Finlayson and Klein Constantia
MAGGIE: 8 courses from The Tasting Room in Franschhoek paired with with Champagne and Jean Daneel Wines.