fine-dining-cape-town

Cape Town’s dining scene is a living, breathing entity; an ever-evolving arena where innovation and challenge are as honoured as history and tradition. One of the consequences of this dynamism is that every passing month can be marked by the opening of an exciting new eatery or the total reimagining of one that has been serving diners for years or even decades.

Grumpy & Runt Little Deli & Donuts, Gardens

The name alone is enough to intrigue one to pay them a visit so it’s just as well Grumpy & Runt’s food offering is fit for the Gods. This little deli that most definitely could specialises in homemade vegan donuts, charcuterie, and cheeses, made fresh every day. They’ve also got a variety of sandwiches and bagels made in the classic deli style. Located in Gardens’ Dunkley Square, Grumpy & Runt Little Deli & Donuts is open for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and treats; you’ll also find local market goods and baked items made on the premises, as well as daily provisions and great batch brew filter coffee.

Coming: March 2020
Where: Dunkley Square, 22 Dunkley Street, Gardens, Cape Town
Web: www.instagram.com/grumpyandrunt/

Fire Monkey, Claremont

Fire Monkey is a modern Japanese and Asian canteen in Claremont that, having had its soft launch on 16th January 2020, is so brand new, the hinges of its doors probably still have their plastic wrapping on. Brought to you by Cheyne Morrisby, the restaurateur behind Cheyne’s and Lucky Bao in Hout Bay, and Shio and Ding Dong Bar in downtown Cape Town, Fire Monkey is an edgy, trendy, and uber sexy Asian hotspot. The décor is warm, sultry, and organic and the food already generating rave reviews. The menu, which is vegetarian-friendly, features a mix of snacks, small plates and bowls, and cocktails, as well as the usual assortment of beverages.

Opened: January 2020
Where: Intaba building, 25 Protea Road, Claremont
Contact: +27 (0) 79 067 4919, firemonkeyrestaurant@gmail.com
Web: www.facebook.com/FireMonkeyClaremont

Fire Monkey, Claremont
Fire Monkey, Claremont

Patiala Brew & Q, Constantia

Patiala Brew & Q is inspired by the City of Patiala in Punjab, India, from whence the owners originate. This new Indian eatery has now introduced, for the first time in South Africa, a restaurant concept (with on-site micro-brewery) that centers quite literally on an open wood fire Plancha on which the dynamic culinary team theatrically prepares the food. To boot, every ingredient that goes into the menu is local, ethically sourced, and traceable. Patiala Brew & Q also serves South African-inspired food, tapas, vegan, and vegetarian-friendly dishes.

Opened: January 2020
Where: Constantia Emporium, Ladies Mile Road, Belle Constantia, Cape Town
Web: Not yet!

The Hub Café with Chef Dylan Laity, Scarborough

Located in the upstairs section at The Village Hub in Scarborough, overlooking the ocean, The Hub Café is a newly revamped offering with Chef Dylan Laity at the helm. Diners can watch Chef Dylan (previously of Aubergine, CBD and The Roundhouse, Camps Bay) and his team at work in the “theatre of food” whilst browsing their way through a unique and special contemporary Asian influenced menu. The stylistic approach to food incorporates modern techniques and plating styles, with a focus on flavour and product quality, and the outcome is a bold flavour marriages, and often some interesting South African twists.

Opened: January 2020
Where: 2 Watsonia Lane, Scarborough
Web: www.thevillagehub.co.za

Dahlia on Regent, Sea Point

Dahlia on Regent is a small experiential restaurant on the golden mile in Sea Point. It is the brainchild of owner and head chef Damian Dafel, who has travelled the world in pursuit of culinary inspiration. While working at some of the top establishments such as La Colombe, Foxcroft, Gleneagles (Scotland), and La Tête, Damian found himself wanting to bring his own style of cooking to the world and the 30-seater venue called Dahlia on Regent represents the fruits of his ambitions. The cuisine is innovative, fresh, and interesting and always crafted from fresh, locally-sourced, quality ingredients.

Opened: December 2019
Where: 77 Regent Road, Sea Point, Cape Town
Web: www.dahliaonregent.co.za

Dahlia on Regent, Sea Point
Dahlia on Regent, Sea Point

Deus ex Machina, Hout Bay

Deus Ex Machina is an international phenomenon that humbly began in Australia in 2006 as a motorcycle workshop. One labour of love inspired several others: a love of good food, good booze, and a friendly, sociable atmosphere and today, this bike shop, restaurant, vinyl room, and bar has found multiple homes across the globe, including Amsterdam, Bali, and now Cape Town (Hout Bay to be precise). Located at the historic Kronendal Manor House right on the main road, the reviews all rage about the stylish and trendy Deus Ex Machina: The Homestead of Perpetuity, with its interesting and unorthodox menu, generous portions, and friendly staff.

Opened: December 2019
Where: 140 Main Road, Hout Bay
Web: www.deuscustoms.com/flagships/the-homestead-of-perpetuity/

Three Wise Monkeys, Gardens

Having won “best everyday eatery” at the 2017 Mercedes-Benz Eat Out Awards, Three Wise Monkeys figured that their izakaya (informal Japanese gastropub) and ramen bar was just too good to not share with the rest of Cape Town, and so they opened their second branch in Kloof Street in the city bowl. Open every day, Tuesday to Sunday, from 15:00 to 23:00, this Asian eatery boasts a laid-back vibe and a delicious menu of inventive fusion dishes and tried-and-tested favourites, such as ramen, fresh sushi, and poke bowls.

Opened: December 2019
Where: 108 Kloof Street, Gardens, Cape Town
Web: www.threewisemonkeys.co.za

Bamboo Plant Power, City Centre

Bamboo Plant Power’s mission is to serve plant-based food that energizes, restores, and invigorates the mind and body; food that is good for both the body and the environment. It’s that simple! This quick service vegan eatery whips up delicious, wholesome plant powered food that is accessible to everyone and that has good health and sustainability at its heart. It’s a lovely place to eat too: spacious and modern, light and bright, with plenty of hanging pendant lights and plants.

Opened: December 2019
Where: 210 Loop Street, Cape Town City Centre
Web: www.bambooplantpower.co.za

Bamboo-Plant-Power

Pilcrow & Cleaver, CBD

Located on Parliament Street in the historic heart of the Mother City, the brand new Pilcrow & Cleaver offers a culinary voyage like no other restaurant of its ilk…no seriously: like no other. Why? There is no service staff. With the middle man/woman gentle eliminated from the equation, you get to speak directly with the kitchen Gods and – with no doors, windows, or walls separating the kitchen from dining room – you also get to watch while they animatedly create. The cuisine at Pilcrow & Cleaver is defined as fierce with bold modern European-inspired flavours, and with a menu that changes every week, you can expect fresh, inventive, and daring fare.

Opened: December 2019
Where: 37 Parliament Street, Cape Town
Contact: +27 (0) 64 301 6328
Web: www.pilcrowandcleaver.co.za

Botany d’Aria, Durbanville

For just over a year, the upmarket Botany Bar in Newlands has been pleasing patrons with its inventive cocktails and gorgeous, verdant interiors. Now, The Copper Club Group has opened a second branch of the cocktail bar and lounge, this time at the vineyard-embraced d’Aria wine estate in Durbanville. The botanical-themed bar fits right in with the area’s green, rolling hills and offers patrons an extensive selection of gin, bubbly, whisky, vodka, tequila, and craft beer, as well as wine by the glass and a delectable tapas menu.

Opened: November 2019
Where: M13, Tyger Valley Road, Durbanville
Web: www.coppercollection.co.za/home/2017/11/24/copper-club-pdy5y

Epice, Franschhoek

Derived from the French word ‘épice’, meaning spice, Epice is an intimate fine dining restaurant located in Franschhoek’s Heritage Square. The 45-seater restaurant is the inspiration of Head Chef Charné Sampson who was until recently the sous chef at La Colombe. Serving an array of delectably curated dishes, Epice features a flavour-packed menu inspired by the team’s culinary expedition to India, as well as memories of travels through Spain, Japan, Mexico, Denmark, and the United States. Chef Charné’s menu features home-cooking-style dishes with a refined edge. Says Scot Kirton, chef proprietor of La Colombe: “Charné has always had a love for spices and Epice is the perfect place for her to weave her magic.”

Where: 9 Huguenot Road, Franschhoek
Web: www.epice.co.za

Epice, Franschhoek
Epice, Franschhoek

Haute Cabrière, Franschhoek

Haute Cabrière’s recent renovations and reimagining bring a much-needed transformation to this award-winning and vastly popular wine estate; one that has rendered its gorgeous terrace invulnerable to the wind and rain, which means that its panoramic Franschhoek Valley views can be enjoyed all year round. In addition to the greatly elevated aesthetics and comfort of Haute Cabrière, you can expect a few new wines by Takuan von Arnim, freshly baked treats from the new deli, and the same absolutely delicious food by Chef Nic van Wyk. Haute Cabrière has most assuredly received its second wind and it’s absolutely worth a second look!

Relaunched: November 2019
Where: Lambrechts Road, Franschhoek Pass, Franschhoek
Web: www.cabriere.co.za

Maaya, CBD

Simple yet stand-out, Maaya Cape Town brings the outside in to create an unexpected space in the heart of Cape Town. This vibrant modern Japanese Peruvian restaurant and lounge bar is natural and elegant with its stunning vegetal wall amongst the aged bricks. The menu is humble in size yet presents a vibrant fusion of Peruvian and Japanese fare, from “Waffle of the Inca” and “Mount Fuji Bagels” to innovative sushi dishes and Chilean sea bass ceviche.

Where: 168 Loop St, Cape Town City Centre
Web: www.maayacapetown.com

Patina Steak & Fine Wine, Durbanville

Located right next door to Botany d’Aria cocktail lounge and bar, you’ll find Patina Steak & Fine Wine, the potential second stop for your day at D’Aria Wine Estate in Durbanville and a smashing place to sit down to a fine supper and bottle/s of local wine. As with Botany, the original instalment of this restaurant was opened in Newlands and was such a rampant success that The Copper Club Group decided to rinse and repeat. For aged Chalmar steak, sustainable seafood, and free-range chicken cooked to perfection served with mouth-watering accoutrements and beautiful wine, look no further than Patina.

Opened: November 2019
Where: D’Aria Wine Estate, M13, Tyger Valley Road, Durbanville
Web: www.coppercollection.co.za/home/2017/11/24/patina

The Farm Café at Spier Wine Estate, Stellenbosch

The Farm Café is Spier Wine Estate’s brand-new eatery, which just opened its doors on 1 October 2019. Open Tuesday to Sunday from 08:00 to 16:30, this sit-down, service experienced café offers healthy, simple, and nourishing breakfast and lunch dishes. These are made with fresh, seasonal ingredients sourced either from Spier’s farm or from local producers who share their ethical approach. The Farm Café’s meat comes from pasture-reared animals raised without the use of antibiotics or hormones. This includes beef and pork from Spier’s Farmer Angus, who also supplies eggs laid by happy, outdoor-roaming hens.

Opened: November 2019
Where: Spier Wine Estate, Stellenbosch
Web: www.spier.co.za/food/farm-cafe

Arkeste by Richard Carstens, Franschhoek

Located at Chamonix Wine Farm in Franschhoek, Arkeste presents an a la carte and tasting menu in a casual fine dining style. The restaurant is in a characterful heritage building on the edge of a forest, which sets the scene for a tranquil dining experience and delicious food by Chef Richard Carstens (previously of Tokara Wine Estate). The menu revisits some of Carstens’ classics alongside some new dishes, which showcase seasonal and local ingredients.

Opened: October 2019
Where: Chamonix Wine Estate, Uitkyk Street, Franschhoek
Web: www.arkeste.com

Arkeste
Arkeste by Richard Carstens, Franschhoek

La Grotto Ristorante, Constantia

As if the beautiful and historic Constantia Uitsig didn’t have a rich and mouthwatering enough offering, they have now welcomed another restaurant into the fold: La Grotto Ristorante. The Italian eatery dishes up generous servings of hot fresh pasta and pizza, as well as a hearty selection of meat and seafood dishes and salads, best washed down with some of the estate’s beautifully crafted Constantia wines. Combine this authentically Italian indulgence with heart-rending views of the Constantia Wine Valley and you’ve got a mealtime experience that you and your friends and family will want to revisit again and again.

Opened: October 2019
Where: Constantia Uitsig Wine Estate, it Spaanschemat River Road, Constantia
Web: www.uitsig.co.za

Le Chêne at Leeu Estates, Franschhoek

Leeu Collection has put into motion exciting new plans for its Cape Winelands properties that will reinforce Franschhoek’s title as the Gourmet Capital of South Africa. Multiple award-winning chef Darren Badenhorst spearheads the food and beverage offering at Leeu Estates’ new restaurant in the Manor House called Le Chêne (The Oak), which serves French-inspired dishes made from local produce. Leeu Estates’ mountainside country house hotel and boutique winery was just recently awarded the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa (TGCSA)’s new 5-Star Premium grading. Both the name and concept of the new dining experience at Le Chêne pay tribute to Franschhoek’s history and unique culture.

Opened: October 2019
Where: Leeu Estates, Dassenberg Road, Franschhoek
Web: www.lechene.co.za

Ochre at One&Only, V&A Waterfront

Ochre is the new restaurant at the spectacular One&Only Cape Town, and offers a contemporary interpretation of age-old South African recipes. Head chef Chris Mare has created a unique menu of reimagined local cuisine, adding his own interpretation to favourites such as Bobotie and West Coast Mussels. In this way, Ochre brings together a kaleidoscope of heritages to create unique dishes and flavours!

Opened: October 2019
Where: One&Only Cape Town, Dock Road, V&A Waterfront
Web: www.oneandonlyresorts.com/cape-town/dining

Ochre-at-One-and-Only

Surfshack Diner, Camps Bay

Perched on a prime location on Camps Bay’s golden mile, Surfshack is a new contemporary seaside diner that serves up absolutely delicious diner classics (with a unique twist). Think: Poor Man’s lobster roll, seared ahi tuna bun, barbeque lamb chops, steak and egg, hot honey fried chicken burger, pizzas, salads, and more, all served with a side of vibey buzz in a rustic yet stylishly decorated venue. And with front row seats to one of the best sunset spots in Cape Town, it’s the newest cool kid on the Kove Collection block.

Opened: October 2019
Where: 201 The Promenade, Victoria Road, Camps Bay
Web: www.surfshackdiner.co.za

The Melting Pot Cafeteria, CBD

After the success of their pop-up eatery on Loop Street, owner-chef John Van Zyl (of Chefs Warehouse and Thali) decided to open a permanent restaurant on Wale Street with his two chef friends, Stefan Roos (of Terroir, Thali, Kole and Deeg) and Sage Fell (partner and food-lover-turned-chef). Thus, The Melting Pot Cafeteria was born! Located a short, three-minute walk from colourful Bo Kaap, The Melting Pot is a laid-back spot with a menu featuring dishes and culinary delights from all over the world (hence its name). Here, you can sit down to a street food-inspired feast with flavourful plates borrowed from Mexico, Argentina, and Japan to Thailand and America.

Opened: October 2019
Where: 64A Wale Street, Cape Town City Centre
Contact: +27 (0) 71 525 8875

Cause Effect Cocktail Kitchen, V&A Waterfront

Inspired by Cape Town’s fynbos, oceans, vineyards, and mountains, Cause Effect is an experiential cocktail kitchen and brandy bar with a formidable reputation for serving a mean and totally creative cocktail. Now, they’ve opened their second cocktail kitchen, this time at the V&A Waterfront, where guests can indulge in seasonally inspired cocktails accompanied by delicious canapés and small plates. From prawn toast with miso mayo, beef tartar, and cheese and charcuterie boards to Korean friend chicken tacos, umami beef burgers, and more, there isn’t a palate that Cause Effect doesn’t cater for.

Opened: September 2019
Where: The Rocket Shed, 280 Dock Road, V&A Waterfront
Web: www.facebook.com/CauseEffectBar/

Lord Nelson Restaurant, Gardens

With its ornate ceilings, plush botanical tapestries, wood panelled walls, and first-class chairs that once belonged to the iconic Union-Castle Line ships, the timelessly elegant Lord Nelson Restaurant at the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel lovingly preserves the old world romance and glamour of high-end dining. Here, fine food presented tableside, top Cape and international wines, and service perfection are delivered in an establishment that has hosted a constellation of local and international stars, including former President Nelson Mandela.

Revamped: September 2019
Where: Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, 76 Orange Street, Gardens
Web: View website here

The Kind Kitchen at Constantia Uitsig, Constantia

“We create seasonal vegan goodness from locally grown and sourced produce in the Cape Town CBD. Our mantra is No Harm Done. We live and breathe the vegan lifestyle and are here to support and share this ever-growing movement with you.”

Opened in November 2018 next door to the Woodstock Brewery and now at Constantia Uitsig, the Kind Kitchen is a 100% vegan eatery that serves a delicious assortment of vegan breakfasts (think: tofu scrambled or fried eggs, French toast with agave syrup and vegan bacon, and chickpea flour omelettes). They also do a selection of lunch dishes that are uncanny in their emulation of the real thing, such as The Impossible Burger and vegan fish and chips.

Opened: September 2019
Where: Constantia Uitsig Wine Farm, Spaanschemat River Road, Constantia
Web: www.uitsig.co.za/kind-kitchen/

The Kind Kitchen, Uitsig
The Kind Kitchen, Uitsig

Tryn at Steenberg Estate, Tokai

Previously the home of Catherina’s, Tryn was opened on 2nd September 2019 after the Steenberg Hotel underwent a major rejuvenation and redesign. This fine dining restaurant is charming, elegant, and contemporary in spirit, yet steeped in history. At the helm is Constantia chef Kerry Kilpin, who has an eco-conscious approach to cuisine, in which she honours fresh, local, seasonal, and sustainable ingredients with inspiration taken from her worldly travels. Dedicated to Steenberg’s 17th century founder, Catharina Ras, or “Tryn” as she was known, this restaurant is contemporary in spirit with fabulous food, bold accents, modern textures, and gorgeous vineyard and mountain views.

Opened: September 2019
Where: Steenberg Estate, Steenberg Road, Tokai
Web: www.steenbergfarm.com/tryn/