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The Noisy Oyster

The Noisy Oyster
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Cost
R150 avg main meal
Ambience
Comfy & casual
Food
Seafood
Payment
Mastercard, Visa

Critic's review

Richard Holmes

Food
This much-loved fixture of Paternoster’s restaurant scene offers up a wonderfully diverse menu where you’ll be tempted to order one of everything. Start with a platter of the eponymous oysters, served as they should be: simply, with lemon and Tabasco. There’s salsa on the side if you must. The oysters are plucked fresh from nearby Saldanha Bay, as are the mussels, deliciously steamed the classic way with garlic, white wine and a splash of cream.

For mains? You’re by the seaside, so perhaps the roasted fillet of gurnard, or the unusual laksa of crayfish, prawns and linefish. Pricey, but worth it. On a cold evening you may be drawn to the meatier dishes. The terrine of pig’s cheeks is as rough-chopped and rustic as the duck liver parfait is smooth and silky. You’ll also regret not ordering the wild boar sausage served with juniper jus and polenta. The dessert selection is small. Don’t miss the textbook crème brûlée.

Drinks
A compact and well-priced wine list with both pocket-friendly easy-drinkers and a few pricier options. There is a decent choice of craft beers, as well as a few bubblies to pair with the oysters. Good by-the-glass selection too.

Service
Warm personal service from the small team, for whom nothing’s too much trouble.

Ambience
Perhaps the most charming restaurant in the village. Who needs a sea view when you have a magical garden of fairy lights, crackling fires and colourful umbrellas? Blankets and cushions cosy up the simple wooden tables.

And…
This may be a sleepy seaside village, but bookings at this popular spot are essential.

(September 2016)

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  • Graham Howe

    This destination restaurant in the quaint fishing village of Paternoster pulls the regulars and seagulls in and out of season. Graham Howe visits The Noisy Oyster.

    Food
    Although the focus is on West Coast seafood, carnivores will find meatier fare on the menu, from poultry and pasta to steak. On the fishy side, whet your appetite with raw or poached oysters, billed as West Coast Viagra, snoek fishcakes, flash-fried sardines or pan-fried calamari with piquant paprika, lemon and aioli. After all, the restaurant is close enough to the sea to hear the surf pound the beach on a wild night.

    Top-quality ingredients get a gourmet spin in the kitchen, with globetrotting signature dishes like Malaysian laksa (a spicy seafood coconut broth) and oven-baked Cape salmon or whole stumpnose (caught on a hand line) served with crushed potatoes and capers.

    Chef knows his sage butter from his beurre noisette, and surprises diners with a gastronomic twist on pairing flavours. The salads are fresh and creative, the portions hearty and wholesome.

    Unassuming and consistently good, The Noisy Oyster never fails to surprise, delivering an authentic West Coast dining experience at reasonable prices.

    Drinks
    Look forward to a good, well-priced range of wines by the glass and bottle, with tempting cool-climate Sauvignon Blanc from nearby Darling wineries to match the seafood.

    Service
    Attentive and warm. Blankets are offered to offset the ocean breeze on a chilly evening.

    Ambience
    This rustic family-friendly venue is as chilled out as the hammock and beach umbrellas in the courtyard, and as warm as the brightly painted wooden tables and evening lanterns. Chess and trivial pursuits are available on the tables for you to while away the time.

    And…
    Check out the blackboard for the day’s specials: fresh West Coast line fish, Saldanha mussels and oysters, and whole crayfish as the star in season.

    (August 2015)

  • Jeanne Calitz

    Food
    There’s a sensual playfulness to this restaurant, with the starters listed under ‘foreplay’ and mains explained under the heading of – what else? – ‘intercourse’. Add to this the naughty pictures decorating the bathrooms, and you can be assured that this establishment has its tongue firmly in cheek. All the better to taste the food, of course.

    To get into the swing of things, we order a plate of juicy local oysters. Plump and fresh, they’re just the thing to pair with a bottle of Warwick Professor Black Sauvignon Blanc. Other temptations include hot smoked mackerel with berry-saffron vinaigrette and terrine of pig’s cheeks with olive and apple chutney.

    Seeing as we’re near the beach, there’s a lot of seafood on the menu, but if you’re feeling overfished, they offer spatchcock baby chicken; Chalmar beef sirloin with potato wedges fried in duck fat; and handmade Toulouse sausage with a potato, parsnip and baby turnip purée blanc. There’s also an interesting dish of braised and shredded duck with Asian noodles and toasted nuts. The clear winner of the day, however, is the seafood laksa, a gloriously fragrant marriage of kingklip, mussels and calamari in a spicy coconut broth. It’s the kind of dish that makes you want to lick the bowl for every last, delicious morsel. Despite valiant efforts, we have no room for dessert, but the rest of the meal was climactic in its own right, so no regrets here.

    Drinks
    A short but sufficient list features the likes of Spier, Creation and Reyneke across an amiable price range and with most of them available by the glass. If you’re in need of something virginal, ask about their interesting cordials – the ginger version being a special treat.

    Service
    Service is spot on; it’s welcoming and quick off the mark. The pacing between courses is just right.

    Ambience
    Take your seat on the outside terrace with its friendly vibe. Greenery and bright lanterns, coupled with brightly painted wooden benches adorned with comfy cushions, make for a pleasantly relaxed experience.

    And…
    They sure know how to whet the appetite. Next time I’m having the oysters poached in cream of artichoke with MCC-and-black-pepper crème fraîche. It’s listed with the starters under ‘foreplay’, but should perhaps be moved to a category of its own, labelled ‘the big bang’.

    (August 2014)

  • It’s pretty difficult to get a dinner table in season, but it’s worth the effort. Order the fish of the day or oysters with a glass of West Coast wine. The backyard shady setting with fireplaces lends itself to romance. (EO mag 2014)
  • Food
    A wide-ranging and creative menu has something for almost everyone here, although seafood is unsurprisingly the star attraction. Saldanha oysters fly out the kitchen, and local line fish – try the yellowtail with citrus butter – is often on the menu. Meat-eaters can’t go wrong with the ever-popular slow-cooked lamb shank or delicious Thai-style duck curry.

    Wine
    A reasonable list is heavy on local estates, with plenty of white wine options to match the seafood-focused menu. There’s a good selection of beers on offer.

    Service
    Enthusiastic staff are part of the charm of this somewhat bohemian eatery.

    Ambience
    Savvy diners head straight for the colourful courtyard, where flickering fires and acres of fairy lights set the scene. There are, however, a few tables indoors if the wintry nights get chilly.

    And...
    You can even hone your general knowledge before dinner, with packs of Trivial Pursuit cards left on every table. (RH, October 2012)

User reviews

  • The Noisy has been a favourite of ours for 10 years. We go back every chance we get. The food gets better with as the chef explores and renews the menu, the service never fails, the wine list is always interesting and the ambience is unlike any other place in Cape Town, let alone the West Coast. Be sure to book as this is a sought after destination for all the foodies out there.
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  • I absolutely LOVE The Noisy Oyster! My boyfriend and I stayed in Paternoster two years ago over the Valentine's weekend and he had booked dinner there. That meal - especially the seafood laksa - still stands out in my mind. I would even go so far as to say it's the best meal I've ever had. The only sad part is that I live so far away - in Cape Town. We do have plans to go back, though. In fact, our plan is to wake up early one morning and to drive through just for lunch! That's how much we love this place.
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  • I was as sick as a dog after eating at The Noisy Oyster. The maasbanker wrapped in prosciutto was probably the culprit. It tasted very strong and worryingly bitter. Plating such an oily fish on very rich, creamy beans was a mistake, too, as the nature of that fish asks for acid. Regardless, I think the fish was off, and that night was no fun. Even though the waitress could see my plate was 2/3's full when I was finished, she asked no questions. I didn't see the point of saying anything if the attitude was that doff. The duck pate I started with was fine, my friend's 'watermelon and feta' salad contained a lot of iceberg lettuce and the dressing had stale oil in it. I see no reason to return.
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  • This was probably one of my top 3 meals of 2014 in the Western Cape region. We went for lunch and were treated to an exceptionally fresh and well prepared 3 course meal, very efficient yet friendly service and a charming courtyard. If you go to only one restaurant in Paternoster then this would be it.
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  • Wonderful food, service and venue - always a great experience, although a few fans would have gone a far way to relieve the heatwave.

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  • This is my favourite spot in Paternoster. Seating in the garden in summer or winter is just a pleasure. You feel immediately relaxed when you enter this eerie like outside area. The team working is fun, dedicated, knowledgeable and you are in for a super meal. Trivial Pursuit cards on the tables are always a fun way to wait for your dishes too!
    My favourite is the catch of the day as I get to eat fish I can never find in Stellenbosch!

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  • Thee place for the best combination of great food, wonderful vibe and a service to match with a special quirky twist.

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  • Wow! What a surprise! Coming from out of town, we didn't know what to expect other than getting a quick bite to eat. The service was attentive, prompt and knowledgeable. The food was simply outstanding! The fish cakes, the stump nose fish and not to mention the oysters are winners in our books. I would recommend all that are thinking about this restaurant.

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  • Sensational! We were completely blown away by this quaint little restaurant. The food is phenomenal, the setting gorgeous and the staff so friendly! And all this perfection in a little seaside village. I would drive through from Cape Town just for lunch again!
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  • Super food, Super people, Super ambience. Will be back ! ! ! Loved this place
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  • Some of the tastiest, most well presented food Ive enjoyed at a restaurant in a long time. The setting is quirky, rustic and romantic, while the service is great. Our 3 course meal was delicious from start to finish and the Fat Bastard Chardonnay was the perfect accompaniment. Highly recommended and most definitely returning as often as possible!
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  • Delightful - never disappoints!
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  • Had dinner at the Noisy Oyster during Easter weekend - it was so good we booked for lunch the next day.The culinary highlight of the West Coast.
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  • The Noisy Oyster in Paternoster is awesome, awesome, awesome. Great food, great ambience, great music, great service. Again, I must add, awesome, awesome, awesome!
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  • Without a booking, we managed to get a table at the Noisy Oyster. Luckily there was a table only booked for 8pm. As we arrived at 6pm and were only there for oysters (or so we thought), we werent fussed by the time limit. The oysters were lovely, fresh and still tasting of the sea.... but we were even more intrigued by the Stuffed Sardines wrapped in Parma Ham and the grilled calamari. The sardines were crispy and tasty - perfect with a bottle of Fat Bastard Chardonnay. But what impressed me most was the calamari with smoked paprika - tasty and perfectly cooked, not tough at all! This is by far the best calamari I have eaten in a long time, and I will be back.The ambience is wonderful set in an arty, indigenous sort of garden with bench style seating with cushions and blankets.
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  • The Noisy Oyster in Paternoster....we had been told how amazing itwas and that while in Paternoster this restaurant was a must. I popped in to make a reservation and it looked lovely, large outdoor area, beautifully done, vibey and fun. Coming back for dinner was different, the tables were on top of each other, there were 3 tables in the space of about 4metres! The food slightly pricier than we had anticipated. The seafood thai curry was great, just what I had wanted on a cold evening, however the steak was not. It had not been properly prepared and was much too large for even my boyfirend to eat. We would go back for oysters and wine on a sunny mid afternoon.
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  • Having arranged to spend three nights in Paternoster last weekend I tried to find out where there was to eat without much success. I had heard of The Noisy Oyster so booked dinner there for the Saturday evening. We had battled through incredible storms from Cape Town and assumed that few people would be eating out that night.. What a surprise! The car park was full and the restaurantI looked cheerful from the outside. On entering we received a warm welcome, and the restaurant was bright and a bit wacky. Some people were even sitting in the outside area where braziers had been lit for warmth. My husband chose for his starter the mini seafood platter which was a selection of prawn with aioli and herb sauce, stuffed baby calimari and mussels. It was beautifully served and tasted delicious. I had seared beef with mixed greens and the fillet just melted in my mouth. For mains I had a bowl of mussels which were very good and he had a sirloin steak served with some chunky fries (real potato). The steak was cooked to perfection. The dessert menu sounded interesting and the wine list was short but well-priced and offered wines by the glass as well as by the bottle which is always good and they were mostly from fairly local wineries. We drank some Fairview Chenin Blanc from Darling-grown grapes. The service was excellent and all in all it was a thoroughly enjoyable experience and a very pleasant surprise.
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  • To Debbie & Carl - you have a great restaurant, the menu is up there with the best. The menu has a lot to offer, especially on the seafood side, fresh & well prepared. I thoroughly enjoyed dining at your restaurant. Highly recommend
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  • We spent a night in beautiful Paternoster at the beginning of September. It was a Monday night and we were told that although the Noisy Oyster was THE place to eat, it was closed on Mondays. We were however coming back on the Thursday night so made a booking for then. We were so looking forward to a fresh fish treat. Imagine our disappointment when the only seafood on the menu was mussels! Sorry, not on for a supposedly fantastic essentially seafood restaurant. The mussels were very good but we found the menu and decor more than disappointing. If you are going for fish, check the availability before you go.
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  • Best meal, service and ambience despite having no water! Kids had a blast and so did we!
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  • After resigining and having worked flat out over season, and being broken into last week life was getting a bit stressful. my amazingly understanding girlfriend and I needed some quality time togther. She chose Paternoster as our destination. Being a little farm boy from the natal midlands I must be honest I dont know much about the western Cape. We headed out for the hour and a half drive and WOW!! I say again WOW!! It has to be the most picturesque little village I have ever seen. Staying only a few meters of the beach, in a tiny cottage was amazing, but little could compare to the Noisy oyster. The food from chef Brian was unbelievable, certainly not something you would expect to find in a town so small. From the ostrich carpaccio, to the sardines with cumin spiced pomme aus crusse to the amazing livers. All fantastic. And The oysters, oh my word, Beautiful fresh oysters for half the price you pay on a good day in south african eateries!! Needless to say we returned the followinbg night and the sunday lunch. The highlight of all the meals for me was the whole overn baked bream stuffed with butter and lemon served on spring onion potatoes. I had been liss the whole weekend for fresh fish and that exactly what i got, you could see the fisherman bringing it up from the sea literally!! To Carl, brian and your lovely spouses to bibi the dog who kept my girlfriend company while we chatted about food, thank you, we went there for a meal and we left a fairytale behind more in love then ever. THank you all once again.
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  • Had the pleasure of lunch here over the festive season. At this small intimate venue is owner run the welcome is warm ,friendly and inviting. Overall the service was as good as can be expected. The food wasnt over the top and was well executed. The atmospher in the garden out back makes the place unigue, if it was on the beach it would be world famous...A better option than the hotel , the lodge or Voorstarndt Restaurant in my opinion.
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Facilities

  • Alfresco
  • Booking required
  • Dinner
  • Eat Out reviewed
  • Food
  • Functions
  • Licensed
  • Live entertainment
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Serves food
  • Vegetarian

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