There’s a reason it’s tough to get a booking at this Kloof Street hangout. It’s the hangout spot for many Capetonians – and for good reason. The blackboard menu changes daily, and is uploaded to their site if you’d like to spoil the surprise that awaits you.
Portions are hearty and generous – something worth keeping in mind when ordering. Opt for a starter on the lighter side: the rainbow trout gravadlax, served on sourdough with pickled beetroot salad and a dill mustard salad, is light and refreshing with a lovely hint of tartness. The Fior Di Latte, tomato and olive tapenade tartlet is served on crispy puff pastry and, while delicious, is a sizey portion for a starter, erring more on the side of tart than a tartlet.
For mains, expect a choice of vegetarian options (whole roasted mushrooms or lentil coconut curry), a range of fish dishes (including seared rainbow trout, kingklip, South Indian yellowtail coconut curry and seared tuna), and a number of bold slow roasts, such as sticky Asian black bean beef short ribs, spiced beef brisket and slow-roasted pork shoulder.
The fresh pappardelle with rabbit braised in white wine, peas and parmesan is worth venturing out of your comfort zone for: it’s not as filling as the other meaty dishes and is earthy with pops of sweetness. The Chinese 5-spice hoisin pork belly is another notable option. Served with sweet potato puree, Chinese cabbage and perfect crackling, it’s hearty, spicy and wholesome.
Desserts portions are slightly smaller than expected, which will be somewhat of a relief if you’ve opted to indulge in three courses. The flourless chocolate cake is akin to a tasty little brownie. It’s rich and tasty, but lacks a boldness in flavour when compared to the preceeding dishes. Other options include the likes of an almond tart, white chocolate mousse, coconut sago pudding (served warm or cold) and a cheeseboard of local artisan cheeses.
Expect a beast of a wine list with a great variety of options – plus a number of fantastic options by the glass. Expect to pay R45 for a glass of white and around R50 for red.
Service is friendly, casual and prompt, and staff are well versed in the menu. Management is ever-present and fully involved on the floor. A few minor errors were rapidly sorted without fuss.
The Black Sheep is trendy but comfortable. It’s vibey and festive, but without being overbearing. The small bar area is a popular venue for after-work drinks (complete with a concise list of bar snacks).
If it’s too early to head home, head upstairs to the lounge section with your wine and continue the evening’s festivities.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.