Restaurants in Cape Town
One of the many attractions of Cape Town is the quality and variety of restaurants in and around the city, which by international standards remain fantastic value for money. As well as a wide variety of international fare, there are numerous restaurants offering local Cape Malay dishes and traditional African cuisine, while seafood, especially sushi, is also extremely popular. Fine diners and families with young children will find they are equally well-catered for, and vegetarians and vegans will also feel at home.
Camps Bay and the Waterfront have a wide variety of restaurants, but many of the better ones are outside these tourist hotspots. The town of Franschhoek, 40 minutes outside Cape Town, has a reputation of being the gourmet capital of South Africa with plenty of award-winning restaurants. Many of the wine farms in Constantia and around Stellenbosch have fantastic establishments for long lunching, accompanied by a bottle of the superb local wine.
Visitors to Cape Town during the winter months should take advantage of 'winter menus' offered by most restaurants. These are astoundingly good value deals, often packaged as a tasting menu of five courses or more. Restaurants in Cape Town usually add a 10 to 15 percent service charge to tables of six or more. Otherwise, waiters expect a tip of 10 to 15 percent for good service. Recent legislation has banned smoking on all restaurant premises.
A huge success story from day one, Constantia Uitsig is an Italian-French restaurant with Asian fusions set in picturesque wine country, set against the backdrop of the Constantiaberg mountain range. Chef Clayton Bell continues to create food with broader influences than his original Provencale-Tuscan mix, he claims Australian and Asian influences too these days. Next door is Uitsig's sister restaurant, La Colombe, serving richer food which some prefer, but the views are not as good. Booking essential.
Address: Constantia Uitsig Farm, Spaanschemat River Road, Constantia
Telephone: 021 794 6500
Solly and Jane Solomon's refreshingly casual seafood established in uptown Cape Town, Miller's Thumb has an ever changing chalkboard menu. This means that the customer always has a good chance of discovering something new, while you can rest assured there will be the option of something familiar. Cajun and Creole dishes are the order of the day, as is Yaki Soba, an award-winning Japanese dish with prawns, chickens, and cashes. Thankfully, it's a staple. There's generally a pasta dish or two, complemented by an array of interesting sauces and a selection of good wines.
Address: 10b Kloofnek Road, Tamboerskloof
Telephone: 021 424 3838
Situated just behind Camps Bay's main strip, the Codfather offers a unique presentation of fine fish. There is no menu at this low-key restaurant. You make your choice after a personal discourse with your waiter on the daily specials. It is then weighed, prepared to the highest standard, and served at your table. Staff are all first class and provide a service of the highest order. There is also a sushi bar. Open daily for lunch and dinner.
Address: 37 The Drive, Camps Bay
Telephone: 021 438 0782
Beluga is a stylish and sophisticated eatery located in the Foundry, a 100-year-old redbrick building that once housed one of the city's oldest metal works. It now has a modern interior design as well as an office centre, integrating fast into what is rapidly becoming Cape Town's film and modelling district. The restaurant offers the best of a wide range of cuisines. However, there are plenty of robust flavours, interesting ingredients, and generous portions. The cocktail bar serves great drinks, perfectly complemented by its famous sushi menu. Tables spill out onto an enclosed courtyard, serving light meals and coffees from early until late.
Address: The Foundry, Prestwich Street, Green Point
Telephone: 021 418 2948
Royale is the gourmet burger joint of choice in Cape Town. It's not uncommon to see scruffy-jeaned skaters at one table and trendy executives at another. Royale offers a spectacular range of burgers, as well as a delicious list of veggie burgers, and one can chop and change toppings. Choose from ostrich, chicken, beef, or veggie patties, while deciding on sides of potato wedges, sweet potato fries, regular fries, or delicious salads. Aside from such offerings as 'The Miss Piggy' and 'The Fat Bastard' (double everything), the restaurant serves a variety of pizzas and milkshakes. Royale now boasts an upstairs bar and lounge known as the Waiting Room, featuring live music, and a third floor which caters to private functions and sundowners.
Address: 273 Long Street
Telephone: 021 422 4536
Regarded as one of Cape Town's most stylish dinner-dance venue, Pigalle is a vast, split-level restaurant divided into intimate dining areas, each boasting a view of the dance floor and band. The lavish furnishings, elegant tables, and background music create the perfect atmosphere to indulge in the sumptuous offerings from either one of the set menus or from the à la carte menu. Start with the black mussels, then choose between the ostrich fillet with mushroom and peppercorn sauce, the fillet medallions, or the Pigalle Platter (prawns and langoustines in lemon butter), and share the crème brûlée or baked cheesecake with someone special. Open Monday to Saturday for lunch and dinner.
Address: 57A Somerset Rd, Greenpoint
Telephone: 021 421 4343
Something of a Cape Town institution, Café Mozart has been attracting locals and foreigners for over thirty years. Serving some of the best coffee in town, Café Mozart is a great breakfast stop with tables spilling out onto a shaded pedestrianised walkway where buskers amuse passers-by with some lively tunes. With superb fruit juices, a mouth-watering selection of sandwiches made on freshly baked bread, and an attractive daily menu created at the whim of chef and proprietor Tom Kelley, there is something for everyone. For teatime lovers, head to Café Mozart and sample their variety of looseleaf teas that are served in elegant silver teapots and quirky crockery. Open Monday to Saturday for breakfast and lunch.
Address: 37 Church Street
Telephone: 021 424 3774
With its prime location near the Cape Town Stadium, Tobago's restaurant in the Radisson Blu Hotel is a celebrated venue for visitors to enjoy a long luxurious lunch or dinner. Diners are offered a wonderful selection of meals from the restaurant's world-class menu, made from locally sourced, fresh ingredients. There is also a buffet from which to choose, best enjoyed in the stylish dining area or outside on the beautiful waterfront terrace. Tobago's is a good option for those seeking fine dining before or after a sport event or concert at the Cape Town Stadium.
Address: Beach Road, Granger Bay
Telephone: 021 441 3414
Myoga is a trendy and upmarket Cape Town establishment, enjoying the finest in contemporary fusion cuisine. With a friendly and laidback atmosphere, its speciality dishes include the caramelised pear and walnut gorgonzola. Another favourite is the seared ostrich with mango and fynbos honey, a unique dish which cannot be found anywhere else in the world. The kitchen itself is set in the middle of the restaurant, open for all to see with its theatre and craft. Open Monday to Saturday for lunch and dinner. Reservations essential.
Address: Colinton Road, Newlands
Telephone: 021 657 4545