We asked three of our favourite foodies to share some of their top city centre eateries and what they’re planning to order there on their next visit.
Cape Town, South Africa (30 June 2020) – With many restaurants set to reopen this week for sit-downs, we spoke to three of Cape Town’s top foodies to share some of their top CBD eateries.
Restaurants finally have permission to open their doors to sit-down visits from patrons. The Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID) is incredibly proud of how the many eateries and restaurants in the Cape Town CBD have managed to ride out the COVID-19 storm with entrepreneurial flair, hard work and sheer grit.
So, we asked three of our favourite foodies – food stylist, writer and photographer Sam Linsell; Food Jams founder and MasterChef SA finalist Jade de Waal; and cookbook publisher, food writer and critic, Tamsin Snyman – to share some of their top city centre eateries and what they’re planning to order there on their next visit.
Jade De Waal: Food jams founder and former Masterchef SA finalist
Which CBD eateries are normally your go-tos?
- Hemelhuijs, Waterkant St. Why? It’s the imagination and visual delight of the restaurant, the comforting but beautifully presented food, oh, and, of course, the fries!
Try their signature Karoo breakfast with golden farm eggs, soft mielie pap with honey, and toasted mosbolletjie bread with home-made apricot jam – and lashings of nostalgia on the side.
- Just Like Papa, Harrington St. It’s a one-stop-shop for awesome coffee (Moses Lebofa operates his micro-business, Coffee By Moses, inside this concept store), epic gifts and venue hire. I’m still planning my next party at their store.
With the interior resembling the ribcage of a whale, you really are walking into the belly of the beast. Born out of a spirit for adventure, you’ll find a selection of specialised products but also a good cuppa Joe!
- Honest Chocolate Café, Wale St. The name, the delicious bonbons and the banana bunny chow on the menu. And, of course, the neighbouring Gin Bar.
A small, hidden artisan gem that takes chocolate to unthinkable levels. Try the St Anna’s lightly salted nachos, accompanied by indulgent chocolate and finished off with a dash of chilli on the side if you crave that fiery kick.
- Nude Foods. The variety of food perfect for shopping in small and large quantities, minus plastic packaging – they are the future of shopping!
Supplying Capetonians with non-GMO, locally-supplied and affordable whole foods as well as Earth-friendly body and home products. Everything from beetroots and nut butter to aluminium-free bicarb and grey-water-safe body wash.
Sam Linsell: Food stylist, photographer, writer, recipe developer
Which CBD eateries are your favourites?
- Chefs Warehouse & Canteen, Bree St. Why? The best food you will find in the city without a reservation. Always world-class and delicious. Top tip: Chefs Warehouse Beau Constantia and Chefs Warehouse at Maison are both open for business! Beau Pick Up and Go offers a selection of dreamy tapas for two. At Maison, you can pick up a basket and shop the marketplace or pop in over the weekend for a unique shop and collect experience.
- La Tête, Bree St. I love the simple menu that celebrates the ingredient. Just really delicious, honest food presented in an unpretentious way. You have to try: The Madeleines! Rumour has it they’re the best biscuits in the Mother City …
- Clarke’s Bar & Dining Room, Bree St. One of my favourite burger joints – it’s pretty much the only thing I ever order there. I’ll definitely be stopping by. What’s a burger without a side? In this case, go all out and get yourself some four-cheese Mac & Cheese for a carb on carb extravaganza.
- Love Thy Neighbour, Bree St. For drinks. This is my favourite local drinking spot, and I love it on a Friday after work. It’s wonderful to sit outside here all year round, and it’s casual and perfect for meeting friends in small or large groups. Share the love: This Greek gem is all about sharing – including generous bowls of hummus served with golden, fresh pita bread.
- The Melting Pot Cafeteria, Wale St. I love the evolving menu that changes every few weeks. You can either hit it on an Indian tapas cycle or one more inspired by South East Asia. Delicious small plates in an unpretentious setting and owner run. The main theme? Shareable street food, inspired by Thai, Vietnamese and Korean cuisine.
- Other favourites: OBI for sushi, South China Dim sum bar and Tjing Tjing Tori.
Tamsin Snyman: Food personality, critic and cookbook author and publisher
Which CBD eateries are your favourites?
- FYN, Parliament St. Situated near Cape Town’s historic Church Square, you step into a breathtakingly beautiful restaurant room with floor-to-ceiling, triple story glass windows framing a one-of-its-kind tandem view of towering Table Mountain and majestic Lion’s Head where you dine. It’s no wonder FYN is scooping up every national design award to be had. Jennifer’s on-point wine pairings are a standout. Her care, passion and attention to detail are enhanced with every mouthful.
- Mulberry and Prince, Pepper St. A dream that was born on a street corner in New York City, a few years later opening its doors in Cape Town. The creation of New-American modern cuisine paired with simple South African ingredients. Step inside the small sassy space, and you’ll soon discover where the coolest of cool food aficionados hang out. To look out for: Their riff on cacio e pepe (a traditional Roman pasta dish) made with their house-made pasta, gnocchi à la Parisienne or freshly shucked oysters with yuzu-kosho (a fermented Japanese seasoning made with fresh chillies and fragrant citrus flavours.)
- La Tête, Bree St. A culinary dream of two brothers, Giles and James Edwards, magically materialised after a decade of training in the UK. Seven years working under the global great nose-to-tail king Fergus Henderson at London’s St John, whose food philosophy and whole-animal celebration approach inspired the brothers to bring this love to South African shores. The seven-day brined crispy pigs’ tails are ones to try. These tails lie in brine for ten days before being braised in chicken stock and crumbed. Next, they’re deep-fried and served with a delicious confit garlic aioli!
- Belly of the Beast, Harrington St. This is the first South African restaurant born from crowdfunding. It consists of a tasting menu which changes by the day, so you go in not knowing what’s for dinner. This allows chefs Neil Swart and Anouschka Horn to show off the Western Cape’s exceptionally fresh seasonal bounty. Pastry-master Anouschka’s ice cream is the thing to try. A beautiful plating that defies the pudding label – topped by hazelnuts, a sago slice rests on deep brown caramel, with a waft of meringue, vanilla pod ice cream and a drizzle of mint oil, followed by an extra sweet treat to top it all off.