The Silo Hotel, built in the grain elevator of the historic silo, is a magical space, towering high above the V&A Waterfront. Surrounded by the natural wonders of the Mother City, the rooftop bar has views that capture the glory of the entire City Bowl.
Revellers can start off at the Silo rooftop bar (if they have a reservation) on the 11th floor and enjoy the sprawling views with a cocktail and snack from the bar menu. Vietnamese rice-paper rolls with sriracha, prawn tempura and pulled pork sandwiches are some of the options you can expect. The menu also has a few sweets like a macaron ice-cream sandwich with honeycomb and popcorn which, while sipping on a port or dessert wine and soaking up the view, could be an ideal way to end a meal enjoyed in the restaurant downstairs.
The hotel's main restaurant, The Granary Café, is located on the 6th floor and is an equally mesmerising space. The compact menu has a classic approach with modern flair and, if you did not start your dining experience on the rooftop bar, the duck-liver parfait, prawn cocktail or tomato tart might be good options to get your meal under way. Steak with béarnaise sauce and chips are well executed, although slightly overcooked, but sure to please meat eaters.
The bouillabaisse arrives with the seafood elements and vegetables artistically arranged on the plate with an added theatrical element of the rich bisque poured at the table. Unfortunately, the seafood is over cooked and the hot, tart bisque does not help, turning each morsel undesirably tough. The waiter is uncertain on how to respond when I politely point it out and calls the chef to deal with the complaint. The chef offers to remake the dish, but the second attempt proves only a marginal change.
A new restaurant is bound to have a few teething issues, so this is an area for improvement. Peach melba or chocolate tart with hazelnut ice cream look like good ways to end the meal. The desserts are simple, comforting and well presented. Overall, however, the food seems to miss the mark in comparison to the majestic space and polished interior.
The well-curated wine list offers interesting options in a varying price spectrum, showcasing local producers with a good balance of international wines. Guests can enjoy wines like the Mullineux Granite Chenin, Crystallum pinot noir, and my favourite, Kleinood Tamboerskloof Shiraz. Artisanal gins, craft beers and an extensive range of whiskies are also available. I will be back to try the BLT cocktail for a sundowner on the rooftop: butter-popcorn-washed bourbon with lemon and tonic.
It’s a new hotel, so staff and management are extremely keen and willing to please. Despite this, an element of uncertainty and disorganisation is visible. This will no doubt improve as teething issues are sorted out.
The pillowed glazed windows of the silo give the city an enchanting perspective that’s best enjoyed at sunset. The Silo Hotel is impeccably decorated and finished, so it’s hard to believe that this was once a home for grain.
The Granary Cafe functions as the Silo Hotel’s main restaurant and offers breakfast and Sunday lunches with a set menu.
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