So you consider yourself a food connoisseur, an expert on deliciousness. If that is the case, then you need to be booking your next flight to Cape Town, South Africa. Cape Town, besides having a fascinating history and lots to do there, is a melting pot of momentous meals. There are restaurants representing different cuisines all over the place. The choices are not only mindboggling, but also overwhelming. Where will you eat? What should you try first? How will you choose just one? Cape Town is like the foodie capital of the world. #justsaying
On a recent visit to Cape Town, I sat down with my daughter to compile a master list of some of our favourites. This list is by no means exhaustive. There are plenty of exceptional restaurants in Cape Town with awesome food and outstanding service, all reasonably priced. We haven’t tried them all, so I realise I might be missing out on some gems. Apologies to the owners of those restaurants. For the vegetarians and vegans out there – most South African restaurants have options on their menus for you, as well as gluten-free options.
They specialise in ‘Vegan Gourmet Junk Food.’ They have two branches, one in Barrack Street and one in Kloof Street, and are open 7 days a week. However, they are not open for breakfast. They advertise cruelty-free burgers, fries, gatsby’s (footlong submarine sandwiches), and a chocolate cheesecake that’s heaven on a plate.
Eastern Food Bazaar
The Eastern Food Bazaar is in Longmarket Street and is like a food court with different counters selling food from the Middle East to food from India to traditional Cape Malay food. The food on offer is Halaal and there are plenty of vegetarian-friendly options. Don’t be put off by the prices. The food here is really cheap, but that doesn’t mean they skimp on quality. Everything at the Eastern Bazaar is amazing! They are open from 11am Monday to Saturday and are closed on Sundays. They close at 10pm, so you can get a late night snack!
Every time I visit Cape Town, Saigon is on my itinerary. They specialise in Vietnamese cuisine and their food is exceptional. Saigon is in Kloof Street. Their wok-fried calamari starter is superb. The best thing to do is if there is a group of you, order different starters and share, because it’s hard just to choose one. For mains my daughter usually chooses the Pho Bo, and I try different items from the menu each time I go and am never disappointed. They are open for lunch and dinner. They are quite popular and get full quickly, so it might be an idea to book.
Tacos Locos is a Mexican Restaurant in Station Road, Observatory. They are open from 12-9pm Monday to Saturday and are closed on Sundays. Tacos Locos has managed to successfully combine Mexican street food with South African flavours, ending up with something unique that can’t be missed.
Yindees is located on the corner of Camp and Kloof Streets, across the road from Saigon. They offer authentic Thai cuisine. The restaurant is in an historical Victorian house which is quite beautiful. The menu is quite extensive and offers many vegetarian options. There is definitely something on the menu to please everybody. It is hard to recommend just one dish as everything is delcious and will make you feel like you are in Thailand. They are open for lunch and dinner Monday to Saturday, and just dinner on a Sunday.
Monks are located in Durban Road, Mowbray, and they are a Chinese Take-away that also do deliveries. They are open every day from 12-9.30pm. Cheap but good, sums up their food. So if you are looking to get food delivered and are in the mood for Chinese, look no further than Monks.
Linko is another Chinese Restaurant but offers a sit down option and are known for their great specials. They are located in Lower Main Road in Observatory. They offer authentic Chinese food, as well as sushi, and have vegetarian options as well. The fun, vibey atmosphere and outstanding service makes this a restaurant not to miss out on. Linko is open every day of the week from 11am-10pm.
Burger and Lobster
Burger and Lobster is a New York-style restaurant in Bree Street. They are open from 11am-11pm every day of the week. Besides amazing burgers, affordable lobster, decadent desserts, they also make the biggest monster milkshakes I have ever seen. Make sure Burger and Lobster is in your itinerary.
Galbi is a Korean Restaurant with an African Twist. It is located on Long Street and is open Monday to Saturday from 5-10pm and is closed on Sundays. This is one of my favourite restaurants to take a group of friends. The tableside BBQ where you cook your food turns eating out into a great social occasion. The Safari Set consists of Zebra, Warthog, Ostrich and Kudu. Don’t worry, there are also plenty of vegetarian and vegan options. Galbi is highly recommended.
Den Anker is a Belgian restaurant on the Pierhead at the V & A Waterfront. It is open every day from 11am-10.30pm. Besides the amazing views, Den Anker is best known for their exceptional seafood and great selection of Belgian beers. And yes, you can order Belgian waffles!
Meloncino is an amazing Italian restaurant in the V & A Waterfront in the shopping mall. They are open every day from 11am-11pm. The food is authentic Italian with homemade pasta and wood-fired pizzas. Tasty and beautifully presented, if you love Italian then Meloncino is for you!
Karibu is another one of my favourite restaurants. They are located in the mall in the V & A Waterfront and have a view of the harbour and Table Mountain. The waiting staff are incredibly friendly and helpful and the cuisine is traditional South African. They are open every day from 11am-11pm. If you are wanting to try delicious bredies (stews) and treat your tastebuds to unbelievably tasty traditional desserts, then Karibu needs to be on your itinerary.
Willoughby is one of the best seafood and sushi restaurants in Cape Town. It is so popular that there is invariably a queue for a table. Willoughby is in the mall at the V & A Waterfront and is open every day from 12-10.30pm. If you want to eat fresh seafood, then this is the place for you!
Biesmiellah is a Cape Malay Restaurant in Wale Street in the colorful Bo-Kaap area of Cape Town. It is strictly Halaal and that also means no alcohol. It’s closed on Sundays and open Monday to Saturday 12-10pm. This is where you can eat bobotie, crayfish curry, koeksisters and samoosas, and all the food that has made Cape Malay cuisine so unique and delicious.
I haven’t even touched the surface of great restaurants in Cape Town. My next blog post will bring you great restaurants in the suburbs of Cape Town. As I said before, if you are a foodie then you have to visit Cape Town.
You can see my video review of Burger and Lobster here.
You can see my video review of Galbi here.
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