Recently, the Inside Guide asked 14 of South Africa’s top chefs where they like to wine and dine when they’re not busy creating their own gastronomic delights. Ten places in particular popped up on the go-to list of these fine food fanatics, and we thought it would be rude not to share:
1. Chefs Warehouse and Canteen
This diamond in Bree Street’s crown got the vote of 11 out of the 14 chefs asked. Described as “canteen style fine dining”, the small space provides an atmospheric vibe while you savour the varying three-course creations concocted by acclaimed chef Liam Tomlin.
2. La Colombe
La Colombe persistently remains at the dramatic apogée of fine dining in Cape Town. French influences marry local ingredients, and it’s a local Constantia-based haunt of four of the country’s acclaimed chefs.
Serving modern South African cuisine in a sophisticated setting, Greenhouse at The Cellars-Hohenort Hotel in Constantia is led by Peter Tempelhoff, who is one of only two Relais & Châteaux Grand Chefs in South Africa. And if his legacy isn’t enough, then trust the four masters of cuisine who rate this as the height of refinement.
4. South China Dim Sum Bar
Any Asian will tell you that quality cantonese cooking was sadly not something that the Mother City could boast as part of her extensive repertoire. That was until the South China Dim Sum Bar opened its doors to Long Street to offer a simple menu of sumptuous flavours from the Far East. It’s no wonder that four of South Africa’s most revered gourmands frequent this hallowed hole-in-the-wall.
5. The Test Kitchen
Tucked away in a cool corner of Woodstock, The Test Kitchen is “bold, experimental, contemporary”, and isn’t just the top choice of three of South Africa’s top chefs, but was also ranked 22 in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2016.
6. Ash Restaurant
If you’re looking for a protein fix in a sustainable environment, then follow in the footsteps of three of the country’s most esteemed gastronomes and book a table at Ash Restaurant in the CBD. Taking charcoal cooking to the next level, this ‘meatery’ will give you a whole new perspective on the traditional South African braai.
7. The Food Barn
The founder of La Colombe now works his magic in Cape Town’s Deep South, bringing a relaxed feel to fine dining for two of the country’s most notable epicures, as well as many locals who hold this restaurant on a pedestal. This treasure trove of delicacies can be uncovered in a renovated old barn and is arguably best enjoyed after a horse ride along Noordhoek Beach.
8. Rust en Vrede
Voted by Travel and Leisure magazine as one of the best vineyards in the Cape Winelands, this historic wine estate is now often known for its restaurant that consistently ranks as one of the best in the country. It gets the thumbs up from two of South Africa’s food connoisseurs, and we’re sure Nelson Mandela would have agreed about the Rust en Vrede wines that he was served at his Nobel Peace Prize dinner.
9. The Shortmarket Club
Co-owned by Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen fame, this stylish spot offers sensational twists on classic fare. Expect extraordinary food, exceptional service, and maybe even to be sat next to one of the two top chefs that can’t get enough of this centrally located sensory escape.
10. La Mouette
Looking for a dining experience with a bit of va-va-voom? Well, look no further than Sea Point for seasonally-inspired cuisine and a Tasting Menu that has chef George Jardine salivating.
If any of these restaurants tickle your tastebuds, our Elite Travel experts can happily incorporate these fine dining experiences into a carefully woven Cape Town itinerary. Get in touch to start planning the ‘fine’ details of your luxury vacation.
And if you do have the good fortune of feasting at any of these restaurants, make us drool by tagging Elite Travel Concept in your photos on Instagram.