A nice problem to have is that the Cape Town region is so full of restaurants and wine farms – which usually come with a restaurant of their own – that you simply cannot try all of them. Yet, we made an effort. [Continuing my previous food post]
sweet: Little bistro in Stellenbosch with proper breads run by Swedes. Nice if you want a solid bread but I found the ‘fillings’ a bit uninspired. And the traffic on the road next to it a bit too heavy when sitting outside.
Eikendal wine farm: Their restaurant is situated quite close to a road but by the magic of elevation and a lake just in front of it, you won’t notice. The springbok carpaccio was probably a bit thick for carpaccio but still nice. And hooray for daytime drinking.
We were also highly amused by finding
Thüringer Bratwürste among their daily specials. Correctly spelled. Those Germans are everywhere.
Mama Africa is a widely recommended restaurant in downtown Cape Town. With my parents being reluctant to travel there and back at night it took a bit of nagging to go there. The place was packed and the food was neither particularly exciting nor particularly good. I tried the crocodile sosati which tasted like chicken (with my memory of crocodile being more like fish but that may be because of different preparation) and had a Kudu steak which was rather dry.
The place isn’t just a restaurant but also doubles as a bar. Many people came and went and there was live music playing which made things a bit too busy and loud for having dinner. The band was playing what I’d consider ‘Caribbean’ version of pop songs. I actually thought they were quite good but it’s a shame they didn’t do anything original.
While it may just be a tourist trap after all, I’d say that just coming to Mama Africa for a drink and some music rather than a meal should be much more fun
La Petite Ferme: Situated on the hills behind Franschhoek (the demise of whose great pancake restaurant keeps making me sad), doing only lunches and being fully booked doesn’t make this restaurant the most convenient one. But it was the best one during my whole holiday. We had to wait a bit for the table to be cleared and sat down in the sunshine of their garden with a view on the valley for the time being, ordering some wine.
I had the rice paper with greens and pine nuts as a starter which was nice. The mussels with creamy white wine sauce were rather good as well.
As a main dish I had the idea of staying lean by having the
open ravioli which essentially meant sheets of noodle with plenty of tomato, feta, herbs and walnuts among them. Doesn’t sound too exciting but tasted good. The trout was very good as well and the seared tuna on green asparagus was such a generous portion and so well done that I may have regretted my choice after all.
After that I had to have a dessert as well and went for a tarte, fruit, ice thingy. Quite nice particularly the fresh berries in it.
The Guinea Fowl: The restaurant on the Saxenburg wine farm is quite good as well although many of their dishes suffer from being overly sauced and decorated as well as being fancy for the sake of being fancy rather than being downright good. Sitting on the stoep may give you a view all the way to Table Mountain.
96 Winery Road: This one has been a favourite with the family for a while. Not just for the meat platter they carry around to show off the different cuts and pieces but also for the rest of the menu. I had some oysters as a starter and, while OK, I keep wondering what the fuss is about. I also remembered them to be less fleshy from when I had some as a kid (imagine the suffering of holidays at a place where oysters are cheaper than ice cream…), continental differences, perhaps?
Dros: Another franchise where you can eat a steak with onion rings. We went there because the place had a great entertainment area for my friends’ kids. With games and the facilities for them to roll out, top and bake their own pizzas. I would have loved that as a kid…
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