Eat Out

CAPE TOWN

Ahead of its time

The Mercedes-AMG GT Roadster

AFRICAN

ONS HUISIE

BEST FOR Sunset nibbles. FOOD Winner of Best Country Style at the 2018 Best Everyday Eateries. While it’s tempting to stick to seafood at this seaside setting, there's a very good chicken pie rich with mushrooms and a generous burger. Then there’s traditional bobotie or lamb bredie done with a green-bean sauce. The fishcakes and the mussel pot make for delicious starters and will having you coming back for more. Opt for Cajun-style calamari for something with a bite or go for the prawn-and-fish combo. The house dessert is traditional souskluitjies: homemade steamed dumplings sprinkled with cinnamon and slathered with custard. DRINKS A reasonable list, featuring something for most diners. SERVICE Friendly and smooth, from an eager young bunch. AMBIENCE This cute little building has a superb view of the little bay right in front of it and is just the place to be for sunsets. (GL)

18 General Jansen Road, Blouberg; 021 554 1553; breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon to Sun; avg main meal R100; corkage R30

THE AMERICAS

CLARKE'S BAR AND DINING ROOM

BEST FOR The freshest diner-style food in a hip setting. FOOD It’s evident that each menu item is well thought-out, with some classic and adventurous ingredient combinations. The croissant French toast stuffed with Nutella and boozy bourbon bananas is a winner. At 11am the lunch menu becomes available, featuring a superb selection of sandwiches like the Reuben with grain-fed beef brisket that’s cooked slowly for 12 hours. It comes served with braised cabbage, blue-cheese dressing and is finished with emmenthaler cheese. Clarke’s has a superb burger selection – the buttermilk-fried chicken option is highly recommended – as well as vegan and gluten-free options. Try the Sabich: hummus with fire-roasted brinjal, cumin carrots, beetroot, salted cucumber, tomato, cabbage and yoghurt. DRINKS A large selection of craft, local and international beers, interesting wines and innovative cocktails – try the hibiscus and gin. SERVICE Attentive staff. AMBIENCE A very upbeat and lively vibe in a relaxed diner space. (JT)

133 Bree Street, City Bowl; 087 470 0165; breakfast and lunch Mon to Sun, dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R80; corkage R50

THE DECKHOUSE CRAB SHACK AND BBQ

BEST FOR Getting stuck into delicious crab dishes. FOOD The Deckhouse Crabshack offers a dining experience inspired by the cuisine of the southern coast of the States. Namibian golden crab comes lightly steamed and tossed in a sweet, spicy and sticky Indonesian sauce. Other standout dishes include the moreish popcorn shrimp served with a spicy mayo and the chicken wings, served in a home-made Jim Bean basting sauce. If you have space for it, end with a Mississippi mud pie comprising a cookie layer topped with a chocolate cake-like batter and whipped cream. DRINKS Cocktails are inventive and often come with the option of being served in a pitcher. The wine list is nicely stocked and well-priced, and there are some great local and international beers available, too. SERVICE Spot on and armed with a good menu knowledge. AMBIENCE As the name suggests, there is a great deck offering world-class views of the City Bowl. (JS)

108 Kloof Street, Gardens; 021 424 1020; lunch and dinner Mon to Sun; avg main meal R155; corkage R45

THE DOG'S BOLLOCKS AT YARD

BEST FOR An entertaining, satisfying meal. FOOD Expect a slightly unorthodox dining experience: write your name on a blackboard and collect your order from the kitchen. Drinks are delivered to your table, with waitrons shouting orders to the bar, adding to the exuberant atmosphere. On offer are burgers with options for patties (including a vegetarian one), toppings and sauces, served with either a side salad or chips. The burgers are huge and extremely satisfying. If you'd prefer a pizza, there are a few different options for bases: Neapolitan, with a chewy crust; New York-style (500mm in diameter with a chewy crust and lots of cheese); and Romano-style (thick crust). DRINKS Cocktails, draught beers, wine and ciders. Coffee is by local brand Deluxe Coffeeworks. SERVICE Friendly, with lots of witty banter and teasing, which adds to the rough-and-ready vibe. AMBIENCE It’s very casual, set in what could have once been a panelbeater's shop. (LIB)

6 Roodehek Street, Gardens; 021 461 8134; breakfast, lunch and dinner Mon to Sun; avg main meal R80; no BYO

EL BURRO (GREEN POINT)

BEST FOR Authentic Mexican feasts in a magical setting. FOOD The food is delicately spiced, fresh and flavourful. For starters, try the rellenos (stuffed jalapeños) or the ceviche. The esquites – sweetcorn dressed with parmesan cheese, lime juice, coriander and butter – are truly moreish. For mains, choose from a selection of tacos filled with pulled pork, lamb or vegetables. The line fish tacos have large pieces of delicately battered fried fish cooked to a tender flake, served with guacamole, tomato salsa and pickled onions. There is also a choice of quesadillas, as well as chicken mole and baked enchiladas. Dessert choice is limited but you can’t go wrong with churros. DRINKS Alluring array of margaritas; good wine list with by-the-glass options. SERVICE The staff are efficient and helpful, dressed in traditional Mexican dress. AMBIENCE The colourful restaurant is decorated with trinkets dotted all over the walls. (ZN)

81 Main Road, Green Point; 021 433 2364; lunch and dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R140; corkage R45 (750ml), R90 (magnum)

EL BURRO (NEWLANDS)

BEST FOR Sharing jugs of margaritas with friends over authentic Mexican fare. FOOD The smoked jalapeños, stuffed with queso fresco, are a good way to kick off your experience. The classic El Burro ceviche is also a favourite, made with sustainably sourced white fish. Build-your-own tacos is a fun experience, with fillings including fried fish, falafel, steak and chilorio pork. They’re served with traditional accompaniments of sour cream, lightly pickled red onions and guacamole. Pork carnitas are on the menu too. Vegans and vegetarians are well catered for. A frozen Las Paletas pop or churros and chocolate sauce provide the perfect ending. DRINKS Tequila is served in many ways. The house jug margarita is a must for your table and is the perfect pairing to all dishes. Beer, wine and spirits are also available. SERVICE Waiters are well-versed on the menu and walk you through the dishes. AMBIENCE El Burro is a colourful, modern, light-filled space that rings true to the brand’s well-known Mexican-theme. (RK)

37A Dean Street, Newlands; 021 201 1421; lunch and dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R150; corkage R45

EL BURRO TAQUERIA

BEST FOR A fast but delicious meal or a festive tequila-and-taco fuelled evening with mates. FOOD The chilli rellenos at this taqueria live up to their reputation: smoky, cheesy and hot! For mains, the concept is simple: choose from single-serving quesadillas or tacos. The fish taco is a must, filled with Baja-style fish coated in spices, pink pickled onions, smoked jalapeño mayo and avo. The chilorio pork taco is twice-cooked and served with chilli and garlic. When they say ‘hot’, they mean it. The crispy duck taco is another great option; the crispy sweet duck is balanced with a hot chilli salsa. Vegan options include wild mushroom quesadillas and cauliflower-and-chickpea tacos served with a spicy peanut salsa. For dessert, the options are simple: Las Paletas ice cream lollies or churros. DRINKS Tequila-based cocktails, a succinct wine list and fresh juices. SERVICE Fast, friendly and efficient. AMBIENCE It’s a bright, colourful and quirky space. (AE)

1 New Church Street and Kloof Nek Road, Tamboerskloof; 021 422 3554; lunch and dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R120; corkage R45

HOUSE OF H

BEST FOR Hip BBQ. FOOD Run by chef Heinrich Koen and his wife, Christina, House of H takes a very barbecue-forward approach: there is a slow-cooked brisket sandwich alongside simply grilled sirloin and rump steaks, as well as burgers and winning wings, which are deep-fried and served with a sweet and spicy dipping sauce. The dish everyone talks about, though, is the oyster mushroom burger. A hefty mushroom is thrown on the open flames and brushed with a herby basting sauce before being topped with halloumi and sandwiched on a ciabatta roll. If there's space for dessert, they offer brownies and waffles. DRINKS A good offering of local beers and some decent wine options. SERVICE You’re given a card on entry, which you take with you to order your drinks and food. AMBIENCE It’s loud, rowdy and fun. (JS)

112 Loop Street, City Bowl; 076 699 6146; lunch and dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R100; corkage R65

HUDSONS THE BURGER JOINT

BEST FOR A boisterous night out with friends. FOOD This is a burger joint, pure and simple. There are more than 20 different burgers on offer, with some seriously creative flavour combinations. Of course there’s nothing wrong with the classic bacon-and-cheese combo in The Original Royale, but tossing bacon jam and dusted onions (The Bacon Jam) or BBQ sauce and brisket (Jack the Pickle) on top adds a new level of texture and flavour. While most burgers are made from veld-fed, free-roaming beef, you’ll also find ostrich, chicken and vegetarian options. If you just can’t decide, there’s a decent selection of sliders. Burgers aside, you’ll find grilled pork ribs, salads and pizzas on offer. DRINKS Good selection of burger-friendly craft beers in bottles and on tap. The wine list is small. SERVICE Efficient and friendly service from mostly young waitstaff. AMBIENCE The guitar rock soundtrack attracts a vibey young crowd. (RH)

Shop 1A, 25 Protea Road, Claremont; 021 674 5152; lunch and dinner Mon to Sun; avg main meal R100; corkage R40

JERRY'S BURGER BAR

BEST FOR Huge burgers in a vibey setting. FOOD It’s handmade burgers all the way here. Look out for the Jack D burger with a touch of Jack Daniels basting sauce and caramelised onions. Vegetarians will be happy with the Whoop Whoop burger made with a 100% chickpea patty with chedder cheese topped with mushroom or pepper sauce. The FAB (feta, avo and bacon) burger does the trick nicely. If you must be different, try the BBQ ribs or an American-style corndog. To snack on, the Killer Kimchi with cheddar, mozzarella and Mexican pickle, fried and served with gochijang mayo sparks the interest. End with a huge waffle smothered in sauce. There’s a kids’ menu too. DRINKS They have a list of craft beers, cocktails, a small wine list and milkshakes for the kids. SERVICE Friendly and fast. AMBIENCE Cool biker-slash-tattoo-parlour vibe with stunning views of Table Mountain. (HM)

1st Floor Portico Building, Athens Road, Blouberg; 021 556 0852; lunch and dinner Mon to Sun; avg main meal R100; corkage R40 (wine), R45 (bubbly)

LEFTY'S

BEST FOR A night out with old friends in an unapologetic dive bar. FOOD You know it's good when the menu is concise, yet you’re torn on what to order. Order the chicken and waffles because it’s Lefty’s and you have to. Portions are generous, and the bacon and lightly yeasted waffle perfectly complement the syrup, while the tender chicken crunches wonderfully. The tender smoked pulled-pork sandwich with a tangy slaw is worth returning for, but it's hard to imagine going wrong with either the Texas brisket sandwich or the sticky pork ribs. There’s also a selection of pizzas with classic toppings. Dessert is clearly not a priority here. Have another waffle – this time with ice cream. DRINKS Beer, wine and classic cocktails. SERVICE Everyone is friendly and playful. AMBIENCE Everything is entirely understated, a bit dusty, and hipsters file in and out continuously – it’s all part of the charm. (LST)

105 Harrington Street, City Bowl; 021 461 0407; dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R75; corkage R40

MARROW

BEST FOR Fresh, wholesome broths. FOOD Blink and you could miss this beautiful culinary gem that’s spooning up some of the best broths in Cape Town. The signature clear broth packs a punch: crunchy julienned carrot, smoky paprika chorizo, tender chicken and the sweet, light sting of spring onion. The brown broth with venison, lentils, flaked almonds, zucchini and Turkish apricots is brilliant. If you’re vegan (or even if you're not), the white broth is wonderful, with a vegetable base made with coconut milk, miso and lemongrass, and it’s served with roasted aubergine, tofu, turnip and basil dressing. DRINKS Though not large, the drinks menu is definitely interesting. Truly unusual options include the house-made plum shrub, the Aceso fire tonic health shot, and the pineapple shrub cordial. SERVICE Order and pay at the counter and your meal is brought to you. AMBIENCE Small, cosy and comfortable. The simplistic trend runs through the restaurant, with a long wooden counter and little stools. (JT)

83 Loop Street, City Bowl; 079 556 3647; lunch Mon to Fri, dinner Wed to Fri; avg main meal R65; no corkage fee

ROYALE EATERY & ROYALE KITCHEN

BEST FOR Sating a burger craving. FOOD This legendary burger spot offers choices of beef, chicken, fish, lamb, ostrich, vegetarian or vegan patties. The El Burro burger is a 160g beef patty made with chorizo, chillies and coriander. It’s topped with mozzarella cheese, roast tomato salsa and guacamole. The patty, perfectly cooked to medium, is fantastic with their basting. Vegetarians and vegans have plenty of options, with patties made of soya mince, lentils, roasted veg, beans, chickpeas, tofu and more. The upper floor’s menu also features pizzas. There are two desserts on the menu: a Lindt chocolate brownie and malva pudding, both served with ice cream. DRINKS There’s a little bit of everything: smoothies, milkshakes (normal or vegan), cocktails, craft beers and ciders and wine. SERVICE Staff are friendly. AMBIENCE There are quirky wall-hangings, light fixtures and plants. You’ll feel like you’re at your hipster friend’s cosy apartment. (LST)

273 Long Street, City Bowl; 021 422 4536; lunch and dinner Mon to Sat; avg main meal R120; corkage R45

ASIAN-INSPIRED

ACTIVE SUSHI

All-you-can eat sushi. This sushi spot By-the-glass wine options are limited to house bottles; there’s Villiera bubbly and sake. Friendly, courteous service. Wood-clad walls and a feature bar make for a pleasant space during the day

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