Tag Archives: woodstock

A Touchwork Year-end HintHunt in Woodstock (2019-11-29) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 15 JAN 2020

To celebrate the end of a successful 2019 work year, the sister teams of Touchwork (Yay!), Hypenica, RegNow, African Agri Council, and Cape Business News all gathered together at The Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock, ready to forgo last year’s wine tasting in exchange for some mental gymnastics instead. Hello HintHunt.

I won’t lie, when I heard that we were doing HintHunt this year I was pretty excited. The escape room concept is brilliant – basically they lock a small group of you in a staged room, start a timer on the wall to mark your 60 minutes, and then every so gently nudge you to use all of your mental abilities and powers of observation to try and unearth an incredibly intricate chain of clues, hints, locks and keys that will eventually unlock the door and stop the timer.

It is an absolutely brilliant experience. The incredible stress that comes from the relentless timer countdown, the thrill of finding hidden drawers, pockets and containers in just about every inconceivable location, the frustration at bashing your head against a combination lock one to many times – it is an absolute intense bit of intellectual fun.

Our group was split up into four teams and each given their own room, two of the teams heading off for the hardboiled detective themed JM’s Office game, and other two to the Japanese-themed Zen Room game.

As it so happened, I was drawn into a team with Jason, Wendy and Beryl, with the four of us getting whisked off to the delightfully themed, but devilishly difficult Zen Room, where we were confronted by not just intricate puzzles (include a splash of Sudoku), but also the need to do on the fly Japanese translations!

(For reference, the Zen Room’s scenario is as follows: “A recently orphaned Japanese girl has requested your help in retrieving her priceless family heirlooms. Latest intel suggests that the heirlooms are hidden within one of the culprit’s safe houses, you don’t have much time till they are sold in the black market and completely lost forever. This mission will require your teams cooperation and fine eye for detail if you intend to succeed in the recovery of the heirlooms. Act now, you don’t have much time!”)

It was incredibly tricky, incredibly frustrating, incredibly fun – but I literally won’t say anything more so as not to spoil it for anyone still to play. In the end the escape room proved to be too challenging for our quartet, with the timer running out with a few locks still lying in wait for us. Nevertheless, I think we did a damn fine job anyway. (In fact, as far as what I can remember, none of our four groups actually managed to escape – so there is some solace in that! :P)

Having all taken the bus from our Westlake office to Woodstock, the next leg of our year-end function required us to bundle into some Ubers and head down to the always vibrant V&A Waterfront, where lunch at the Mozambique-themed Mozambik restaurant awaited us.

It was good, very good. And the plenitude of wine certainly didn’t hurt either.

Celebrating a Birthday at Food Jams in Woodstock (2017-09-23) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 01 NOV 2017

We had such a blast celebrating the birthday of Michelle (one of Chantelle’s oldest friends) a couple of weeks ago, with the big birthday bash taking place at the very aptly named, nondescript Food Jams base in Woodstock, Cape Town.

Operating in some form or the other since 2010, Food Jams is the brain child of the fun, energetic and foodtastic Jade De Waal. The concept is simple:  Gather a group of people together for a team build, supper club, party, or social jam, pick a theme and arrive on the day in order to be randomly paired off in groups and receive your specified dish’s recipe, all of which forms part of the special menu that has been cooked up by Jade herself.

With music blaring from the background, and plenty of drinks available from the cash bar, the groups then simultaneously get to work at their already prepped workstations in order to whip up a gargantuan meal that consists of all your just made dishes – all set to be devoured by the group once the small house gets rearranged to accommodate one long dinner table.

As you can imagine, the entire evening is an exercise in controlled, fun chaos! (For the record, I joined Andri and together we made empanadas – which actually turned out quite nice despite the fact we somehow missed a lot of steps from the recipe, not to mention completely changed the suggested cooking style!)

Pro Tip: A good idea, as demonstrated by the main party group, is definitely to rock up to your food jam on a hired party bus. After all, the evening is pretty much guaranteed to be one heck of a good party!

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Bonus: To get an even better idea about what Food Jams is all about, One Dog Chicken produced this great little feature hosted on Vimeo:

Also, because I’m not strictly a Capetonian in that I get lost in Cape Town, a map.

Related Link: Food Jams

Klein Joostenberg and Cape Quarter Village Weekend My Life 06 JUN 2012

Another weekend, another Cookies & Cakes Willowbridge Market, though this weekend was my weekend off, leaving Chantelle and Cheryl to man the stall on Saturday morning. (Of course, this means that Friday evening was dominated by market preparation, capped off with Chantelle exercising her chocolate creativity by putting together a fake glamour cake for presentation at the stall – which worked mind you, bringing in three new cake orders!)

Saturday was of course an early start for Chantelle as she up and packed, and left for Bellville in the wee hours of the morning, where she and Cheryl proceeded to man the Cookies & Cakes stall on what turned out to be a very profitable outing.

Jessica and I on the other hand enjoyed a much more relaxed Saturday morning, going through the normal weekend routine and picking up a household chore here and there. However, come 11:00 and it was action stations, as I finished packing all the weekend bags for Chantelle, Jess and I, loaded up the car (which includes getting Jessie in her seat), and drove off through Stellenbosch, successfully navigating all the way through to Klein Joostenberg Farm without getting lost (it’s the same venue where we attended Saret’s wedding a while back).

There we met up with Ryan, Karl-Heinz, Trish and a whole lot of their friends for a bit of a relaxed, celebratory picnic in honour of Karl and two of his other friends’ recent birthdays. Although a bit gloomy at times, the rain stayed away and the sun did shine through every now and then, making for a great afternoon of lazing about, snacking and playing with the seemingly horde of toddlers on the blankets.

Eventually it was time to pack up, and after saying all the goodbyes, Jessica and I drove through to Bellville, after a quick detour thanks to me turning in the wrong direction as I exited the farm. There I met up with Chantelle at the Montgomery Clan Stronghold, and after hearing the great news about the exciting market, we packed Jessica back in the car and took her to visit my Mom and Pops (and Ryan who happened to drop by their place), where we enjoyed some delicious leftover from the market chocolate cake and plenty of catch up chatter. One of the highlights of the visit was Mom revealing a box of old toys and puzzles they had retrieved from the attic, including a wooden puzzle which still bore the birthday message to me on my fourth birthday – back in 1984!

From there it was back to the Montgomery Stronghold as I sat down to watch the epic Stormers versus Bulls rugby game with Monty, which pleasingly we won, thereby eliminating the possibility that my watching a game is a bad omen (the first and only game I watched this season resulted in the Stormers first loss of the season!).

Delicious pizza from Old Oak Diner rounded out the experience.

Because I had earlier in the week promised to pick up Robert’s car at the end of the wedding that he was attending, I had a couple of hours to kill before midnight, meaning the perfect opportunity to head out to Ryan’s pad where I partook in a number of FIFA 2011 battles on the XBOX 360, the result being me coming out comfortably on top!

Now pretty much at the end of Saturday night, it was time for Monty and myself to make the long drive out into the depths of Durbanville, were we located the remote venue and successfully retrieved Robert and his car. Apart from witnessing a brawl on the way there which turned into a full blown police and ambulance scene by the time we returned, the trip was fairly uneventful, meaning that I finally clambered into bed alongside a snoring Chantelle just after 01:00 in the morning.

Sunday kicked off with the arrival of Evan, Natasha and little Evalynne at the Montgomery pad, where they proceeded to check out our car seats in an attempt to help them choose which model to purchase now that Evalynne is finally ready for an upgrade.

One pleasant visit later, and it was time for Chantelle and myself to leave Jess in the capable hands of Oupa and Ouma (and a slightly fragile Robert), first heading out to Plastics Warehouse in Bellville to look for cupcake containers, followed by a drive out to Cape Town where we headed over to the Village Market at the Cape Quarter Lifestyle Village in a mission to suss out a new Sunday market at which to market our goods.

Unfortunately it turns out that the Village Market is on far too small a scale to make it worth our while, and after sampling a few items on sale, we decided to make a turn at the Old Biscuit Mill, a market we’ve heard plenty about, but one we’ve never actually visited.

The GPS took us to a pretty rundown area of Woodstock, and because we didn’t know what we were looking for, we immediately assumed it was wrong, and then started biting one another’s head off as we got more and more lost as we aimlessly drove about. Eventually a phone call to Claire put us on the right track, and once again we ended up at the exact spot we dismissed the first time around.

Amusingly, we had never bothered to turn our heads and look at the wall next to us, because there, written in big bold white letters is written Old Biscuit Mill – which had we bothered looking around in the first place, would have saved us from plenty of rather unsexy vitriol thrown at one another. (Seriously, when we get lost then you would be forgiven for thinking that Chantelle and I are the most bitter of enemies!)

Now laughing at our silliness again (but disappointed that the Old Biscuit Mill doesn’t operate on Sundays), we headed back towards Bellville, taking a detour as we got to Century City, where we stopped in the hopes of locating another market which we heard operated in the area. Disappointingly, this too turned out to be a goose chase as that market only operates in Summer.

Finally back in Bellville and reunited with our daughter, it was time to tuck into the delicious pork roast which Robert and Monty had prepared for us on the Weber, complemented by coffee and the rest of remaining chocolate cake for desert!

Sadly, during all our playing in the afternoon, Jessica managed to slip and badly crack one of her teeth on the tiles, putting a bit of a blemish on Sunday afternoon, but outside of that, the rest of the day was pretty relaxed and quite enjoyable, leading to a lazy drive back home in the evening, followed by the normal Sunday bed time routine to cap off what had been a pretty eventful weekend after all! :)