Established in 2009 on the historic Steenberg Estate known to be the oldest farm in the Cape, Bistro Sixteen82 is one of the few restaurants in greater Cape Town open for breakfast, lunch and dinner all week. With pleasing views in a stunning, contemporary setting, the restaurant draws the crowds in. Friends and families linger over breakfast plates of mushrooms on rösti with gorgonzola cream, beef ragout on whole-wheat toast or one of the eggs Benedict, while business meetings happen over breakfast and lunch during the weekdays. Vegetarians and vegans are happily accommodated – just notify the restaurant when you book.
Chef Kerry Kilpin draws heavily on her love for local produce and her time in Thailand, so expect Asian flavours to pop up. Take the tempura prawn starter with red cabbage, noodles with peanuts and miso mayo or the main dish of green-listed line fish with kimchi, pak choi, shimeji mushrooms and an umami cream. The sauces served with the mains demonstrate a deft hand.
Tapas (served only between 5 to 8pm) is a main attraction with plates to share, like the sticky lamb ribs with harissa, beef tataki with chilli, gambas (prawns) with lemongrass tom yum flavours, West Coast mussels and the chorizo with artichokes.
There’s a good dessert selection, from zingy lemon posset to a luxurious bread and butter pudding.
Steenberg’s great range of wines pair well with both the food and the magnificent views, though you’ll find a few from other estates here. Start with any of the sparkling wines (sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, pinot noir or premium Lady R). Book a tasting of a range of the wines while you’re there.
Waitstaff are friendly and professional with a smart front of house.
Here, you can enjoy a modern space with striking décor elements like the chandelier over the tasting counter, the sculptural wood above the main seating area, and the beauty of the mountain as the backdrop to the pool.
There are tempting off-season specials.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.
Bernadette le Roux
Show-stopping sauces are what make every dish special on the lunchtime bistro menu: you’ll find artichoke velouté served with line fish; Asian sticky soy and ginger with meltingly tender roast pork belly; chimichurri hollandaise served with an open steak sandwich cooked exactly to order; and a rich, dark and lovely cumin jus served with braised lamb neck. The exotic-mushroom risotto with pecorino cheese and Steenberg sauvignon blanc is lick-your-plate deliciousness (if you’re lucky enough to get it due to seasonality. Hot tip: go in autumn. The late-afternoon/nighttime tapas menu delivers on portion sizes – there’s always enough to share, which is the point of tapas after all. Highlights include crispy polenta chips with baba ganoush, prawn gambas with chilli, garlic, lemongrass and tom yum cream; panko-crusted arancini balls and ceviche with avocado, coriander and lime dressing with crispy, smoky corn.
The breakfast menu, though slightly on the pricey side, is worth every cent. Expect interesting riffs on classic dishes such as the eggs royale with baby spinach and rainbow trout and a yoghurt terrine with berry coulis, citrus and nut granola. Freshly shucked Saldanha oysters served naked with tabasco and shallot vinaigrette are also a welcome early-morning treat with bubbles for special occassions (the Steenberg MCC range is delicious).
Steenberg wines dominate the wine list with the odd rogue Constantia wine sneaking in. If you prefer wines from another estate, bring a bottle (corkage is R80 per bottle). Wines by the glass are pricey so come with friends and order by the bottle. The Steenberg wines are exceptional: stand-outs include the Rattlesnake SB, Sphynx Chardonnay and the 1682 Chardonnay MCC.
Service is attentive and speedy and the same front-of-house faces have been around for some time, which is always a good thing.
Muted tones and charcoal walls are offset with crisp white table linen and excellent lighting. A tranquil water feature outside the comfortable tasting room, which showcases a now iconic glass grape chandelier, leads out onto well-kept lawns and an established garden.
Be aware that the tapas kitchen closes early at 8pm and is often full due to post-golfing festivities. Booking in the evenings is essential to avoid disappointment.
Eat Out critics dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.