Our first stop this week is the upstairs downstairs venue with a cute courtyard in Kloof Street.
Chalk and Cork is owned and run by Marc and Amy Botes, who have collectively attained an enviable amount of experience in top end kitchens working with international chefs.
This translates into a menu that is packed with flavor, a highly knowledgeable staff that is very present, but not intrusive, and a wine list that is approachable, fresh and always exciting.
You can’t go wrong with any of the boards (especially the charcuterie selection) but we were blown away by the wild mushroom risotto with grated parmesan and truffle oil, it was out-of-this-world good!! Another stand out were the Parma ham croquettes with apple and beetroot, an outstanding blending of flavours.
The thing about tapas is that the final ingredient is the company you choose to share it with, however you will find that the selection here is good enough to enjoy alone 😉
This is a bistro with a bit of a twist, more of a burger joint within a café environment. Think bare wood bar, generous portions, brilliant drinks and platter type sharing food to go with huge and succulent burgers.
The décor befits the postmodern hipster trendoid, but let that not distract from the delicious food and amazing sweet potato fries (really, get a double helping of these). Try the waffle burger, with bacon and honey mustard sauce, and pick something from their varied and exciting drinks menu. The salted caramel and Baileys milkshake is divine, or the pineapple mango velvet smoothie, with honey, is also an absolute winner!
Lastly, Mustacchio Caffe is also becoming a bit of a destination for coffee connoisseurs, they certainly brew up an excellent cuppa!
The Sorrows is the cousin restaurant of Yours Truly (which we will cover next) and is the brainchild of best mates and now business partners, Daniel Holland (of Yours Truly) and James Louw (of JL Joinery).
It boasts a beautiful aesthetic that is both elegant and tongue-firmly-in-cheek, riffing on the idea of drowning your sorrows, libation accompanied by victuals. The menu is small, but tight, the Porchetta is awesome, and the lamb shank falls off the bone. Have that with a couple of their signature Berry Mojitos and enjoy the stream of interesting folks frequenting this trendy little spot.
There are two reasons to come here, to drown your sorrows or to celebrate, either way, you’ll have a blast. Unhappy Hour from 3pm – 6pm Monday to Sunday.
When the former large-scale band and DJ Venue The Assembly closed down it was gutted and revamped into three venues, a cocktail lounge, a punk styled neighbourhood bar and District, the new live act venue with world class sound and lighting systems.
Harringtons Cocktail Lounge is the home of arguably the best margarita in Cape Town as well as a slew of top notch and high-end cocktails. With beautiful polished wooden details, swish velvet bottle service booths and a dedicated smoking lounge, this venue exudes the class of an era gone by.
To go with your classic cocktails you can indulge in fancy bites such as tuna tacos, spring rolls, mushroom risotto balls, mini burgers, oysters, beef skewers and even mini-samoosas. A house cocktail to try is the Pink Hush, Beefeater Gin shaken with honey and lemon, topped with bubbly and wild raspberry liqueur and served in a flute, it’s elegant and delicious. This is a beautiful sip, indulge and relax venue, by itself, or as the start to an evening out.
New York Bagels is one of those old-time favourite places, that has been around for ages (and moved location a couple of times in the process) that owes its ongoing success to always maintaining excellent quality control and refreshing its menu frequently.
Aside from their eponymous bagels (which are whipped up on site, and come in thirteen varieties), NYB specializes in all sorts of Jewish specialties from chopped herring to blintzes, babkas and baked cheesecake.
All bakery and confectionery items, smoked salmon, brisket and pastrami are produced on site. The coffee is amazing, and the Gypsy Ham, cheddar, onion relish and salad on a toasted sesame seed bagel we had to go with it was perfect.
This is a build-your-own sort of set-up, and practically any palate and diet are catered for. Open in some shape or form for the last 57 years, we hope they stick around a lot longer.
Lefty’s Facebook profile “about” section reads:” booze...food...smoke...song!” and that’s pretty much dead on. Students, locals and business people mix here easily and the reason is the consistently great food.
The menu is limited to a few favourites, and they prep the kitchen for one service at a time, so the later you get there, the more limited your menu may be.
The veggie falafels are phenomenal and the burger selection is brilliant, succulent and tasty, the flavours are simply bombastic. Don’t forget the fried chicken and waffles, a must-try! To go with this hearty modern pub-style fare Lefty’s run the best gin and tonic special in town.
Simple yet great, with a fantastic Friday afternoon ambience.
In part III of our #CTstreetbystreet series Harrington Street comes under the microscope and we look at a cocktail lounge, a dive pub that’s less dive and more pub and an old Cape Town favourite. Harrington street is off Roeland street, near parliament and the Company’s Garden.
An epicurean bar and grill and a musical food experience to be remembered. This gastro pub and live music mecca was created and is independently owned by restaurateur Jurie Blomerus.
Jurie’s vision was a venue for city folk to listen to great music, and wash unpretentious (but great) food down with ice cold craft beer. Think pizza’s, prego steak rolls and battered fish and chips to go with authentic Mexican tequila and a great assortment of craft beers.
The music is the focus and the roster is always full. From improv Jam sessions on Wednesdays (The Jam Stand), Vinyl Fridays with indie and alternative music to Sundays, where bands and friends are invited to perform in the lounge in a laid-back setting. Nothing quite beats live entertainment, and original music is the best sauce.
Step into this Kill Bill inspired Japanese restaurant named after the tart Asian citrus fruit. Ramen and rock ‘n Roll collide here, East, West and Cape Town melt together and produce an excellent ambience, as well as fantastic cuisine.
Try the pork belly ramen with a soft-boiled scotch egg, udon noodles, spring onion, toasted sesame, Chinese leaf and bean sprouts in a lemongrass broth. Everything about this dish is flavorsome and exciting. You must also sample the Kung Fu katsu chicken burger with wasabi mayo and fries, another fabulous fusion.
Chef/Owner Rikku Ó’Donnchü has Michelin star experience, and has brought together things that he finds appealing, from samurai swords to beer taps made from former weapons to Tarantino quotes on the walls. This is also his approach to food, where taste must be king, and boy does he nail it.
It seems these days, wherever you turn in Cape Town and see a little jewel of a place, with that secret something which comes from great ambience, décor and food, it is somehow associated with the Madame Zingara brand.
The Madame has been wowing Cape Town in many ways, weaving magic and food into experiences that are hard to forget. Café Paradiso is one of these places, and the kids experience (they call them Kids Projects) will keep your kids rapt, entertained and involved, whilst giving you a bit of a breather to tuck into something amazing and catch up with a friend.
The Kids Project changes from day to day but some of the things they will be able to choose from will be making their own pizza with ham or bacon, baking a gingerbread man, preparing fresh chocolate chip cookies or decorating and icing a cupcake.
All of this under the watchful eyes of the attending chefs, making sure everything is prepared safely and hygienically, the best bit being that they get to eat their creations at the end! It’s a very thoughtful and well executed alternative to baby sitters.