Foresters Arms

Foresters Arms
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  • Phone Number 0216895949
  • Location 52 Newlands Avenue, Newlands, Cape Town
  • email
  • Opening Hours

    Monday to Thursday 11am to 11pm; Friday 11am to 12am ; Saturday 9am to 11pm; Sunday 9am to 10pm

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R75 - R150 avg main meal
Groups, Kids
Bistro fare
Mastercard, Visa
no BYO

Critic's review

Katharine Jacobs

Affectionately known as Forries, this pub has been around since time began. (I know this because my parents went there when they were at varsity.) It’s best known as a destination to watch the rugby or for students to consume as much draught beer as humanly possible before a night out. There’s also some surprisingly decent grub though.

Sporting pizzas, burgers, salads, a range of steaks, seafood and signature dishes like Provençal mussels and chicken madras (marked, amusingly, with the words ‘highly recommended’ in parentheses), the menu at Forries covers all the bases in the manner of slightly old-fashioned pubs. It’s a comfort to know that unlike most old-fashioned pubs, it’s relatively difficult to go wrong here.

Pizzas are wood-fired and thin, burgers meaty and flavourful, and salads hearty in the manner that helps to mitigate food envy. There’s also a new range of banting dishes that are delicious enough to be consumed by non-banters. There are jalapeño poppers filled with feta and brie, served with preserved green figs and wrapped in crispy bacon instead of batter – a good idea in anyone’s book. There’s a cauliflower pizza – with a tasty base made of cauliflower and parmesan – topped with streaky free-range bacon, roasted cherry tomatoes, avo, mozzarella, feta and basil pesto, and then there’s a soy-roasted pork belly with spiced crackling, apple and cinnamon purée, tenderstem broccoli and sweet potato wedges that gets rave reviews from my fellow diners.

With 11 beers available on tap, it’s unlikely you’ll be reaching for the wine menu. That said, the wine list is marked handily with tasting notes and Platter ratings, and there’s an extensive list available by the glass.

You might not receive silver service, but the staff members are hardworking and friendly, and service is relatively speedy, even on busy evenings.

The crowd is a mix of all ages: students, ageing sports fans who might once upon a time have been students, and young professionals. There’s also a decent kiddies' play area and a kiddies' menu, so families come here too. It can be a little rowdy on game nights, so it’s perhaps not the best venue for a quiet, romantic or restful meal. An outdoor area offers dining surrounded by ivy-coated pillars. A relatively new roof keeps things cosier out here in the Cape’s rainy winters.

The ‘King’s Table’ – a round, bar-style table – comes with a built-in tap, allowing you to pour your own beers from the 50L keg.

(July 2014)

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User reviews

  • I had such a bad experience at this place I made a reservation phoned in twice to confirm, yet I got there with my family who came all the way from betties bay and was still not seated and got no attention from waiters what so ever. It was Thursday evening and after browsing some restaurants in cape town, to host my graduation supper, I came across forties and it look perfect. , was so disappointed and left to go to prime in Claremont where I had no reservation but got a table for 8 immediately in a nice private section of the restaurant and managed to get the bitter taste Foresters arms left in my mouth, washed down with good food and family fun. Defs don't go to this place its not what it seems, staff are clumsy, service is bad, and the ambiance is upsetting and misleading.
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  • Had a great experience at Forries on Friday evening. We popped in with our kids for an early evening meal. The place was packed but service from the bar was swift and the staff went out of their way to make up a table for us (4 adults and 4 kids) and then served us the most delicious ribs, steak pie, calamari and prego rolls. They have a separate kids menu, which is great so you don't have to fiddle about trying to share adult meals amongst the kids, and while it was too cold to be outside at the play area (which is a total win in summer), our lot were very happy munching on their calamari & chips and swigging chocolate milkshakes (which incidentally come in three sub-flavours - normal chocolate, Milo or Nutella!). Will definitely be going again.
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  • Bad service. We booked a table for the rugby on Saturday 26/03/12. Upon arrival the manager forgot to write down the reservation. With no apologies he tried to make a table that was in the throughfare between the kithchen and the toilets with hardly any view of the TV. Hence we went to a neighbouring restaurant to watch the game where we had good service and a great view of the TV. That's the last time I go watch the game at Forries.

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  • Accepts credit cards
  • Beer served
  • Dinner
  • Food
  • Licensed
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Serves food
  • Smoking
  • Wheelchair

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