Renowned for its picturesque location and dining rooms on the edge of the rocks, Harbour House in Kalk Bay suitably impresses, with breathtaking views, lavish seafood and a price tag to match.
The ocean-themed menu kicks things off with plump West Coast mussels in wine, cream, garlic and thyme. It continues to hot seafood soup, cold gazpacho, ceviche and the tian of prawns. For mains, the Mozambican style peri-peri prawns pack a punch of spicy flavour and glistens in the golden sauce. Coming with chips or rice and a tomato salad, it makes for a generous main. Share their shellfish or seafood platters with calamari, mussels, prawns, crayfish and line fish, or opt for their well-executed sushi.
Don't miss the specials board listing the catch of the day and sometimes old classics like avo ritz and sole Florentine. The sole Florentine surprised, with a rather modern interpretation of a smooth spinach sauce and fish grilled to perfection. While seafood is a natural choice here, meat eaters can enjoy beef carpaccio, steak tartare, prime cuts of beef, as well as a rack of lamb. Vegetarian options are scant but there is a potato and parmesan gnocchi and there are salads available.
To satisfy your sweet tooth there are few well-made classics. Choose from the New York-style cheese cake, crème brûlée, lemon tart or the trio of sorbets.
During the winter months, they do have a set menu that has a more visibly meaty appeal. Check their website to avoid disappointment.
On offer is a good selection of cocktails, craft beers, local and international bubbly and a variety of Cape wines. A personal favourite is the Cape Point vineyards sauvignon blanc, which is a perfect companion to seafood.
The service is friendly but frantic and a bit disorganised. We had to flag down a waiter to seat us at our reserved table and waited a while before being attended to. Having said that, staff are knowledgeable and the kitchen is relatively speedy for such a large restaurant.
A beachhouse theme is well executed, with white floors and walls featuring splashes of blue. Booking a table in advance will ensure a prime spot next to one of the balconies to enjoy the uninterrupted views of the waves crashing on the rocks right next to you.
They have branches at the V&A Waterfront and in Constantia.
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The inspired location of this long-standing establishment has seen it weather through some interesting times – most recently it was battered by a mighty storm that saw a fair bit of the restaurant flooded by huge seas. But in typical Harbour House fashion, the kitchen was soon up and running, churning out favourites like the West Coast black mussels steamed in white wine, garlic, onion, thyme and cream; the hearty Harbour House bouillabaisse with fresh line fish, calamari and mussels served up in a seafood bisque and comes with its signature rouille sauce – a ruddy, garlicky, bready richness that is the perfect partner to this dish.
Main course items include the fresh line fish of the day, sautéed smoked paprika calamari (can be ordered as a starter as well), grilled crayfish and, if you want a bit of everything, a most impressive seafood platter for two priced at R650 will do you just fine. For the non-seafood palates, there is a great selection of grills including prime cuts of beef and rack of lamb. To round off a whirlwind of taste sensations, dessert creations include classic crème brulee, fruit sorbet, and a heavenly chocolate delice that gives new meaning to a chocolate fondant, with its rich caramel centre.
A great wine selection, with craft beers offered on tap and served at just the right temperature.
Good. There are an abundance of waiters and maitre’d types on hand to ensure patrons are always taken care of, tables cleared with efficiency, speed and an ever-present smile.
Feels like a great big, summery house with lots of nooks and different sections featuring couches and coffee tables, dining tables and white tablecloths, every which way you turn a spectacular view. Wooden floors, beach-inspired decor and whitewashed walls complete the look.
Look out for their two-course (R195) and three-course (R215) special menus available for lunch and dinner Monday to Saturday, excluding Sunday lunch. Winter 2016 featured starter options of a house salad, mussels or potato and pecorino gnocchi and mains choices of line fish, bouillabaisse or prime cut beef. Dessert was a choice between caramelised lemon tart served with vanilla ice cream, brownie crumbs and berries and a restaurant favourite, yoghurt panna cotta infused with Amaretto and served in a berry soup. Yum!
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