Highveld winters are no joke. It’s dry, icy and, quite frankly, intense. If you’re going to leave the warmth of your home, it better be worth your while. Luckily these restaurants will warm you up on the inside and the outside with their comfort food and fireplaces.
This small and chic restaurants has soft lighting and gentle colour, making it cosy and inviting and cosy. With the fireplace lit, it becomes even more of a spot worthy of dressing up for dinner. Enjoy a cognac in the deep leather chairs in the comfy library and lounge across the foyer before – or after – dinner.
The large hearth is a feature in La Madeleine’s main dining room. Daniel and Anne Leusch make some nostalgic forays into the food of bygone days but always with a touch of modernism. Expect dishes like springbok braised in red wine for mains and crème brûlée for dessert.
This Greek restaurant might be white, modern and streamlined, but the very large open fireplace makes the whole restaurant glitter and glow at night.
Red Tomato has a fireplace room in which a very affordable set menu is served. It changes regularly, but could feature tomato espresso served with a little loaf of bread; classic bouillabaisse; beef rump with oxtail sauce; and, for dessert, a super malva pudding with salted-caramel custard or geranium-scented panna cotta. You are welcome to bring your own bottle of something, so enjoy some wine in front of the fireplace, during and after the meal.
Though closed at the moment, head here after 27 July for the intimacy and cosiness of chef Chantel Dartnall’s chef’s table, a private banquette that seats four people and will allow you to experience one of SA’s best chefs doing her thing. The Tiffany room, meanwhile – a private dining room with a small lounge area – boasts an art-nouveau fireplace. The main dining room features an impressive fireplace too – the focal point of the room – while the Belle Époque Champagne bar has another romantic little fireplace beside which to enjoy a glass of something special in peace and quiet.