The Oakland A’s are on the hunt for a left-handed hitting middle infielder.They acted quick during Thursday morning’s Rule 5 draft at the Winter Meetings in San Diego, passing initially in the draft itself before trading cash considerations to the Philadelphia Phillies for left-handed hitting infielder Vimael Machin. Machin could slide into the 26th active roster spot, should the MLB enact the new rule.The Phillies had selected Machin, 26, from the Chicago Cubs organization with the 15th …
For the first time, two South African restaurants have made it onto UK-based Restaurant magazine’s prestigious World’s Best 50 Restaurants list.(Image: La Colombe restaurant, Cape Town)Brand South Africa reporterAt the announcement of the 2006 awards in 10 April, Cape Town’s La Colombe was placed 28th – and named the best restaurant in Africa and the Middle East – and Le Quartier Français in Franschhoek 38th.The World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards were started informally in 2002 by Joe Warwick, editor of Restaurant. Now in its fifth year, the 2006 list was compiled in a new way: the world was divided into 20 voting regions, each of which was headed by an appointed chairperson who selected a voting panel for their respective region.The list is almost entirely dominated by restaurants from Europe and the US, making South Africa’s winners all the more remarkable. The only other developing country restaurants to feature were India’s Bukhara, at 46th place, and Brazil’s DOM restaurant, at 50th.This is the third time Le Quartier Français has made the list, while La Colombe’s strong showing as the region’s best restaurant is its first placing. La ColombeAt 28th place on the World’s Best 50 list, La Colombe lies among the vineyards of the Constantia Uitsig Estate outside Cape Town. Opened in 1997 by executive chef Franck Dangereux from Provence, France, and co-owner Marlene McCay, La Colombe has won the Business Day National Best Restaurant of the Year Award five times, and a Platinum Award for its wine list.Dangereux has a classical French training, honed in the Michelin-star kitchens of Roger Verge and Louis Outhier. His food combines the cooking styles of his native France with South African ingredients, and is served in a Provence-style dining room with walls and woodwork painted sunshine yellow and sky blue.Restaurant specialities include delicate deboned quail, and pan-fried sole and aubergine on toasted brioche surrounded by snails in a garlic cream, finished with a star anise jus.Dangereux’s cookbook, Feast, was named one of the three best chef cook books in the world in 2004.Visit the La Colombe website.Le Quartier FrançaisLe Quartier Français hotel takes its name from the town of Franschhoek, meaning “French corner”, which was founded by French Huguenots in 1688.Lying in the heart of the Cape winelands and surrounded by the Franschhoek mountains, the hotel’s real draw is the accomplished cooking of Dutch-born Margot Janse.She presides over the Tasting Room, Le Quartier Français’s fine dining restaurant, where she prepares individually tailored menus that make the most of the Cape’s rich larder, accompanied by the finest local wines.The restaurant was placed at 38th, with its speciality dishes made from South African game – impala, warthog, springbok and more.Le Quartier Français has won numerous awards, including Tatler magazine’s Best Small Hotel in the World for 2006. Last year it was named the best restaurant in Africa and the Middle East in the World’s Best 50 Restaurants awards.Visit the Le Quartier Français website.The World’s Best 50 RestaurantsEl Bulli, Spain – The World’s Best Restaurant and Best Restaurant in EuropeThe Fat Duck, UKPierre Gagnaire, France – Chefs’ ChoiceFrench Laundry, US – Best Restaurant in the AmericasTetsuya’s, Australia – Best Restaurant in AustralasiaMichel Bras, FranceAlain Ducasse’s Le Louis XV, MonacoPer Se, New YorkArzak, SpainMugaritz, Spain – Highest New EntrantEl Raco de Can Fabes, SpainNobu, LondonGambero Rosso, Italy – Highest ClimberGordon Ramsay at New Hospital Road, LondonAlain Ducasse’s Plaza Athenee, France, ParisJean Georges, New YorkLe Cinq, FranceDaniel, New YorkOud Sluis, HollandChez Panisse, USEl Celler de Can Roca, SpainPascal Barbot’s L’Astrance, FranceHof Van Cleve, BelgiumLa Maison Troisgros, FranceL’Atelier de Joel Robuchon, FranceCharlie Trotter’s, USLe Gavroche, UK – Outstanding ValueLa Colombe, South Africa – Best Restaurant in the Middle East and AfricaEnoteca Pinchiorri, ItalyRockpool, AustraliaLe Calandre, ItalyLe Bernardin, New YorkNoma, DenmarkRestaurant Dieter Muller, GermanySt John, UKHakkasan, LondonMartin Berasategui, SpainLe Quartier Français, South AfricaChez Dominique, FinlandL’Ambroisie, FranceSchwarzwaldstube, GermanyDal Pescatore, ItalyBocuse, FranceAlain Passard’s L’Arperge, FranceGramercy Tavern, New YorkBukhara, India – Best Restaurant in AsiaDe Karmeliet, Belgium Oaxen Skargardskrog, SwedenComme Chez Soi, BelgiumDOM, BrazilSource: The World’s Best 50 Restaurants ListWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Emeritus Professor Phillip V Tobias, an acclaimed South African anthropologist, with a collection of fossil hominid skulls from east and southern Africa at the Fossil Laboratory of the University of the Witwatersrand. The skull and jawbone of the Taung Child, a famous specimen of Australopithecus africanus, are directly in front of him. (Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For more images, visit the image library) MEDIA CONTACTS • Prof. Andrew Crouch Dean: Wits University science faculty + 27 11 717 6011 RELATED ARTICLES • Rocking in the Cradle • Unearthing our human ancestors • World heritage in South Africa • Khoisan couple home at lastLucille Davie / City of JohannesburgOne of South Africa’s most distinguished scientists, Phillip Valentine Tobias, passed away on 7 June after a long illness.Tobias, professor emeritus of anatomy and human biology, and a respected palaeontologist at Wits University, was 86.“We extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and family of Professor Tobias, and those who knew him well,” the university said in a statement.President Jacob Zuma added his condolences, saying: “We have lost a renowned scientist, a scholar and a unique human being. Our country remains eternally proud of his work. On behalf of government and the people of South Africa, we extend our deepest condolences and may his soul rest in peace.”Tobias was born in Durban 1925, and was acknowledged worldwide as an expert in anatomy, human biology and evolution as well as the analysis of human fossils. He received as many as 18 honorary degrees from around the globe over the course of his career.Accolades awarded Tobias over the years range from the Order of Meritorious Service (gold class) and the Order of the Southern Cross of South Africa, to the Fellow of the Royal Society of London and the Charles Darwin Lifetime Achievement Award. The City of Johannesburg awarded him the Walter Sisulu Special Contribution Award in 2007.He taught some 10 000 students over his almost 50 years at Wits.“I like to think that I have had a moderately good impact on some of them [his students], and bless them, they’re always telling me this when I meet them in Edmonton in Canada, Sydney, Nairobi, Hong Kong, New York and Cambridge,” Tobias said in a 2009 interview with the City of Johannesburg.He said at the time that what made him tick was his love of people and humanity.“I was one of those strange professors who loved his students. By being available to them at all times to help them with their problems and with constructive, creative advice and trying to widen their horizons.”Although frail, up until recently, he drove himself to work on most days, where he had an office at the Wits Medical School. He was still active, answering emails, seeing visitors from all over the world, writing speeches and chapters or forewords for books, and seeing students who sought his advice.His personal assistant, Felicity Krowitz said in 2009: “He goes out of his way to assist anyone with anything. He is so sprightly, so on-the-ball intellectually. His memory is unbelievable.”60 years at WitsTobias had been at Wits for over 60 years – he graduated from the university in 1950. He had simultaneously been professor at the university in the fields of anatomy, palaeonanthropology and zoology. His other work included being dean, emeritus professor, honorary professorial research fellow and director of the Sterkfontein Research Unit.In his time at the university, he served as professor of anatomy and human biology and served as head of these departments until 1990.From 1980 to 1982 he served as dean of the faculty of medicine, and was honorary professor of palaeoanthropology and zoology.In 1994 he was made professor emeritus of anatomy and human biology and honorary professorial research fellow in anatomical sciences. All of these positions he held until his death.Tobias had also served as visiting professor at the universities of Pennsylvania, Florence, Cornell and Vienna, among others.As a world authority in palaeoanthropology, he has authored over 1 000 publications, including 40 books and monographs and over 90 chapters in books in anatomy and palaeoanthropology and other areas.In 2005 he published the first part of his autobiography, Into the Past, a memoir. He was working on the second part when he died.His has written biographies of anthropologists and books on the philosophy and history of science, all the while being nominated for a Nobel Prize three times.Excavations at SterkfonteinTobias had supervised excavations at Sterkfontein for the past 46 years, since 1966, where over 600 fossil hominids have been recovered, and where over a third of all known early hominid fossils have been found.His other excavations were at other major fossil sites like Taung in the North West province, Makapansgat in Limpopo, and sites in Tanzania and Kenya.“Tobias made the Wits’ department of anatomy (as it was then called) a major world centre of palaeoanthropological research and teaching,” said Prof Beverley Kramer.Kramer is the professor of anatomy at the school of anatomical sciences at the university. She was speaking at the opening of an exhibition on Tobias at the Adler Museum of Medicine, in May 2008.“Phillip brought great acclaim, not only to the department, but also to the faculty of health sciences and to his university.”Wits added to its statement by saying Tobias was internationally renowned for his scholarship and dedication to a better understanding of the origin, behaviour and survival of humanity.“For his many major scholarly contributions to palaeoanthropology, anatomy, human biology, cultural anthropology, the evolution of the brain, cytogenetics and the history and philosophy of science.”Over the years Tobias had been offered posts around the world, but he always turned them down, happy to stay at his alma mater, from which he obtained five degrees.“Unlike many of his contemporaries who left South Africa in the 1950s, Phillip stayed on and committed himself to maintaining high standards of scholarship and personal integrity during the difficult years,” said Nobel laureate Sydney Brenner, in the foreword to Into the Past, a memoir.Opposed injusticesTobias opposed the injustices of apartheid, both as a student and as a lecturer at Wits. He was president of the non-racial National Union of South African Students, which opposed segregated education. He also participated in protests against the Group Areas Act, the Suppression of Communism Act, the Population Registration Act and other oppressive laws.Together with his colleagues, he complained to the South African Medical Council regarding the treatment of Steve Biko, who died in police custody in 1977.“Tobias was renowned for his sustained campaign against racism and for upholding and fighting for human rights and freedoms,” said the university’s statement.“In recent years he publicly protested against xenophobia, government’s initial HIV/Aids policies and its delay in granting the Dalai Lama a visa to enter South Africa.”He loved reading whodunits, with his favourite authors being PD James, Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Dorothy Allingham and Kathy Reichs. Classical music was his genre of choice, especially choral music. He used to go to his home town of Durban twice a year for his holidays, enjoying relaxing at the sea.“People, conversation, chocolates and watching the waves at the seashore,” was how Tobias described his holidays in 2009.
BJP chief Amit Shah will be heading eastwards in September with visits scheduled for Odisha and West Bengal in the next fortnight, an emphasis that stems directly from the “Mission 350” plan for the 2019 general elections he outlined at a recent party meeting. Mr. Shah had said the party needed to expand in areas where it had had no presence earlier but got an encouraging number of votes in the 2014 elections. “He will be travelling to Odisha between September 6 and 8 and to West Bengal between September 11 and 13 as part of the organisational consolidation programme that he initiated in May this year,” said a senior general secretary of the BJP. Mr. Shah, while in West Bengal, is likely to refer to the Durga immersion controversy where his party has protested against Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s administrative order that the immersion of idols of Goddess Durga cannot take place on the evening of September 30, Vijay Dashmi, or on October 1, Muharram. Delhi BJP spokesperson Tajinder Bagga has already tweeted pictures of his air tickets booked for Kolkata to “dare” the State government to stop him from immersing the idol on October 1. Second visitThis will be Mr. Shah’s second visit to the State this year. In May, he launched his “booth chalo” programme from the Naxalbari block, considered the symbolic home of Left-wing extremism in India. In fact, Darjeeling MP S.S. Ahluwalia had adopted Hathighisha village, the birthplace of legendary Naxal leader Kanu Sanyal, under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana. In Odisha, Mr. Shah is likely to speak strongly against the Biju Janata Dal-led government. “Unlike other States where we have allies, in Odisha, West Bengal, Telangana and Tripura we want to expand our own strength,” said a senior party office-bearer.