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An Afternoon with Raffaele Ruggeri at BiCE Southern Sun Hyde Park

I cracked an invite to join foodies & media at BiCE Ristorante Southern Sun Hyde Park a couple of weeks ago. It was a celebration of the BiCE South Africa journey, with BiCE Southern Sun Hyde Park currently being the only South African link to the BiCE Ristorante Group. The guest of honour and our host was the handsome and charming Raffaele Ruggeri, the CEO of the BiCE Restaurant Group. I most enjoyed getting insights of the overall BiCE journey from Raffaele, along with the planned expansions into emerging markets. I am excited to hopefully see the BiCE Ristorante Group expand into Africa. All we need is an appetite for real Italian food.

Top Left: Executive head chef Nicolai Paretti & Raffaele Bottom Left: Myself & Raffaele

The afternoon was centred around an authentic Italian menu concept combined with a seafood journey and a sweet end featuring the signature BiCE apple tart.

The starter was two-fold, a medley of cold Tuna Tartar, followed by grilled tiger prawns with asparagus and seafood ragout. I preferred the sweet grilled tiger prawns on a deep umami ragout.

A seafood risotto with baby Zucchini and tomatoes and lobster ravioli with white sauce and black truffle followed. The seafood risotto just outclassed the lobster ravioli. Even Raffaele commented that  “It’ll make Milano proud”.

A kingklip with porcini mushrooms and asparagus sauce and grilled seabass with lemon potatoes – served as one dish as main course.  This one the verdict was out I loved the earthiness of the porcini mushrooms in the kingklip main and the flavour of the seabass.

Of course the classic Italian tiramisu and BiCE apple pie were the sweetest end to a wonderful afternoon filled with culinary delights. There was no context here, the tiramisu won hands down!

To quote Raffaele on BiCE Ristorante Southern Sun Hyde Park “Once again, our recipe of authenticity has proven to be successful.  We believe in keeping it real… real Italian food made with fresh produce, prepared by renowned Italian chefs. The local success of the brand can also, largely, be attributed to our partnership with Tsogo Sun.  The alignment of the first and only BiCE restaurant on the African continent to the Southern Sun Hyde Park Sandton hotel provided us with the correct platform to bring our expertise to South Africa.”

Images thanks to Angelfish PR

BiCE Ristorante
Southern Sun Hyde Park, Sandton
011 341 8080
Best For: Seafood risotto and Tiramisu, High end Italian group lunches (think corporate team or family occasion lunches)
Not sold on: the lobster ravioli, the ravioli was a bit to rustic for my liking.

About thando

Hi I'm Thando Creator of the Jozi Foodie Fix, traveller, foodwriter, ramen lover, strategist, entrepreneur and follower of the Cool based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
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