Venues

Pepenero

Pepenero
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Cost
R100 avg main meal
Ambience
Contemporary cool
Food
Italian, Seafood, Steak
Payment
Amex, Mastercard, Visa

Critic's review

Food
The extensive menu features imaginative takes on some familiar dishes, like delicious calf’s liver with crispy sweet potato and shallots. Starters include retro classic prawn cocktail with Marie Rose dressing and avo, and warm goat’s cheese salad with melted onions and cranberries. A wide range of seafood items including good old-beer battered fish and chips follows, but the standout item is the delicious sliced beef fillet with balsamic cream, served with mushrooms and goats cheese. The white vanilla Lindt chocolate baked cheesecake is the pièce de résistance on the very good dessert menu.

Wine
A very good list featuring the best from the Cape, some with serious mark-ups.

Service
Slick and professional.

Ambience
Situated on the Golden Mile at Mouille Point with fabulous sea views just across the road, this is a light and airy space that’s modern, comfortable and very popular with a young moneyed clientele. But the food is good, so it’s not just a place to be seen, even though this does play a part in the whole experience.

And...
If sushi is your thing, this is one of the best places in town to get it. (GL, October 2012)
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User reviews

  • I love it here... I love everything here . It is my casual, chill place. It is my luxury, fine dinning place. I have been here more than 8/10 times and with every visit I got excellence. The location: Mouille point, sea facing, fresh ambiance whether you sitting outside or inside (10/10). The food: well prepared, fusion of flavors, love on your taste buds. I miss their Osso Bucco and I miss their lamb shank, those dishes were good. My current favorite is the baby chicken and their rib eye steak (10/10) and there is a high possibility that between me and my dinning companions could have had almost everything on the menu. Their sushi is truly out of this world. Their drinks menu is varied - I had my first pinot noir here and never looked back. There is something for everybody. The décor is impeccable. Their staff is friendly, attentive and are genuinely there to be of service. So if you are looking for a flawless dinning experience... I recommend this place for any and every occasion!!!
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  • Terrible- don't bother. View is fantastic and that's about it. Waited almost 2 hours for our main. Veal was oily, oyster was off, steak was over cooked, the side dishes were incorrect. And to top it off the waiter was rude and the manager just kept running away. So many great restaurants in Cape Town don't waste your time here.
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  • Shocking service! They had mixed up our booking so we had to wait for a table to be sorted out. No drinks were offered, we had to ask to be served. By the time we were served our main course 2 hours and 10 minutes had elapsed. With both the starter and the main meal they forgot to bring one persons meal to the table. We didn't have dessert because it was 10.45pm and we didn't want to wait any longer. I will not be going back.
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  • From the moment you are welcomed at the door to the moment you dread (the goodbye), this is by far one of the best "dates" I have been on.
    My wife and I have been a few times and each time, pleasantly surprised. Both the management and staff are professionally brilliant at service and the food leaves your mouth elegantly begging for more! With the after taste of top class service, you leave already having made plans to return!

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  • My absolute favourite! I really love this place. The service is outstanding, management welcoming and food superb! Great value for money - keep it up!

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  • We came for the third time because we like the sea-view but the chef needs more training, especially for the seafood.

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  • My boyfriend and I had the worst service ever when we stopped by for lunch and cocktails during the December holidays. We ended up having 3 different waitors. The waitor who took our orders. 15min later my boyfriend received part of his order, while I still awaited for mine. Another 30 minutes had gone by with no service from the waiters, which is when I enquired about when my food was coming. The waiter had forgotten to place mine. My boyfriend had finished his meal already. Once my food had finally come, almost an hour after placing it, the third waiter had brought it.
    When I complained about the time frame between placing my order and receiving it, he told me "well you've got your meal so there, be happy". Pathetic service coming from a place I have always enjoyed going to.

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  • We chose Pepenero as the restaurant to celebrate our wedding anniversary and were not disappointed. Arriving at the restaurant there is a lovely outdoor area which is perfect for cocktails and dining on hot summer evenings. Entering further into the establishment you have a cosy upmarket bar and then the more formal restaurant. We were seated at the window overlooking the sea and Robben Island which was wonderful. The restaurant hasn't a large menu but the choices are definitely interesting and offers enough for every taste. I would say they specialise in pastas, meat and seafood dishes. Their salads looked refreshing and original although we didn't try any. They have a good Specials Page which we took advantage of and ordered sushi as our starter. My husband had the Seafood Platter (another special) and I had the Grilled Kingklip with Rocket and Parmesan Salad. Starch and Veg are side orders that need to be paid for and not included. Food was all delicious. For dessert we had The Lindt White Chocolate Cheesecake which was smooth and decadent and Tiramisu - a huge portion I wasn't able to finish. Divine strong coffees to end the meal. The waitress who served us was very fast and efficient and made recommendations from the menu. Definitely a place you need to make a reservation for during in-season as they were packed. Bathrooms were clean and loved the additional touch of artwork along the walls heading to the restrooms that is for sale.

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  • Crackpot supper club had been there 4 times and they had an off night. They called and I said we had decided to skip their place in future. We were invited to have a grais meal which was once again lovely. We will be visiting regularly, it was just a sad night and we did the right thing!

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  • Love it! Loveit! Love it!

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  • What a great vibe this place has! Definitely one of my favourites! Youll see me soon!
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  • I dont know what all these negative comments below are all about. I love this place. Great value for money, excellent service and amazing food. I have recommended it to all my friends and family. See you soon Pepenero!
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  • This place is badly in need of refurbushment. The (recommended) crayfish and crab ravioli was off yesterday. What we ate was barely adequate. The wine prices are disgraceful. Give it a miss. Service poor too!
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  • Absolutely shocking service! Rude staff and managers, double booked tables and had to wait over an hour for a table, despite making a booking. Food took close on an hour to prepare and was very average and over priced. I would not recommend this place to anyone - they cannot cope on a busy night and do not live up to the upmarket, sophisticated vibe that they try to portray.
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  • Had a great meal - yummy starters, the seafood risotto was fabulous and the R99 prawn special a treat. But, R40 for a plastic bottle of Valpré sparkling water (R8.50 at Pick n Pay)? No justification for that! Overall, our food was great - the waiter was good, the setting was beautiful and the vibe pleasant. But, guys, if youre full, youre full - we had a super table at the window but ended up being crammed as more tables were added, so that negotiating a trail to the loo seemed more like an obstacle course.
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  • Was one of Stephanies party. Both the sushi chef and the manager have a lot to learn.
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  • I took 5 of my colleagues here for our year-end lunch. The majority of people ordered the special on offer - sushi. Almost 2 hours later, we were still waiting. The manager ignored our complaint and, when the sushi arrived, it was very poor and most of my guests left a large quantity uneaten. For such a lovely venue, I was very dissatisfied with the food and attitude. Our waitress, however, did her best. It was not a pleasant end of year lunch and I was left embarrassed in front of my guests.
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  • Our evening was eating out heaven thanks to Evans and Johnathan. You really went all out to elevate Pepenero back to one of our favourite dining experiences - WELL DONE see you again!
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  • On Thursday night myself and 3 friends decided to go to Pepeneros for Sushi. In short, STAY AWAY! Upon arrival we were told that they do have any pizzas, burgers or lamb dishes. Not a lot left on the menu. One of my friends is vegetarian (only 2 vegetarian options) (veg pizza or truffle flavoured pasta). She decided to have vegetarian sushi, which the waiter told us that it wont be a problem. After placing our orders, we went to the bar for a smoke. While standing in the bar the waiter came to the manager, who was sitting in the office which is open plan and in smoking, and told her that the sushi chef messed up an order. The managers response to this was, so what the #@$ am I suppose to do about it while we are listening to her. She got up, went around the glass partition and took my friends sushi plate off the pass. As we walked pass, she was busy pushing out the fish and stuffing it with cream cheese. She never even went to wash her hands! The manager later came to the table and apologised to us and said that as soon as she realised what she was doing, she stopped. Why do it in the first place? On Friday I gave the restaurant a call and spoke to the restaurant manager, Ryan. He told me that he will speak to the operational manager and she will call me back. Friday late afternoon she did call me and said that she is going to have a meeting with all her managers over the weekend and call me back on Monday. Im yet to hear anything from anyone!Are there still restaurants out there that can afford bad service and unhappy guests?I am still waiting for a response from the general manager or the owner!
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  • I have driven past Pepenero a couple of times and have always seen it pumping, and after reading these reviews, was very nervous to try it out – but decided to give it a shot anyway. What a lovely surprise to find that I had the most amazing night ever! From the amazing hospitality, the efficient smooth, service and most importantly the delicious food – I couldn’t have asked for it to be any better. I highly recommend any one who has not been, or has had a poor experience in the past to give this sensational operation another shot. Pepenero is something for Cape Town to be proud of!
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  • Been here twice now and I definitely wont go back, I phoned at 10am to book a table near the window for 2, we were given a table in the centre of the floor. We arrived early and sat in the very smokey bar as there is no non-smoking area other than the restaurant to sit in, The staff behind the bar are subjected to the smokers as well with no choice, surely this is not legal. I ordered tuna California rolls off the specials menu for a starter and was charged full price, when I questioned this after our R 680.00 bill I was told that my rolls had spicy seasoning on them!
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  • I will never return to this place ever again.Apart from the food being cold, slow and over priced, the management were disgusting and treated their customers like they were in constantly in the wrong. No apologies nor complementaries were given.
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  • What a pleasant surprise this was! I went with a bit of hesitation as I had read and heard conflicting reports. As I went early I was the only one of my party welcomed at the door and in a most professional manner too. When I booked I asked for a table with a sea view - we were lucky enough to sit at a table where the sliding windows were opened so that we could feel the breeze on our faces and smell the salty air. I had some work to do for the next 2 hours and service was most attentive during this period of time. Lamb shank on mash proved an absolute winner with a layered-in-taste home-style sauce. I so tucked into mine that I have forgotten what my friends enjoyed but I recall tasting theirs and mmmm-ing all the way.The manager made about three visits to our table as to all the others - he made good suggestions, followed it up with ensuring we were happy, and then discreetly came past again.To top it all I received a phone call two days later in order to ask whether I found everything to our satisfaction as if in fact inviting me to come up with something so that they could try to improve. Ill be back for sure and I have spread the word amongst all I know.
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  • Pepenero is....in a word....absolutely terrible. From the waiter that doesnt know a thing about the menu and had to come back three times to confirm the order, to the main course that came after 45 minutes cold as stone, to the manager that walked past our table three times while we waited for our mains and never realised that the food was not coming on time, to the thumping beats of the dance music that plays the same tune over and over. Can all this really happen on one Saturday night?Everything seems to happen in threes at Pepenero, they get the order wrong three times, they come back three times to bring one drinks order (having forgotten something at each stage), they ring the bill up wrong....you guessed it...three times! However, they were very busy, so maybe, just maybe, we were unlucky? Out of a sense of fairness the dining dutchman will make a turn there again soon and report back...watch this space.
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  • We went to Pepenero last night after some time that we havent been there. It used to be one of our favourite lunch time spots and weve spent countless Saturday afternoons with lots of good memories. However, last nights experience changed it allFirstly we were escorted to the new smoking section outisde right at the end of the restaurant with a gritty view over the parking area and some sea beyond. The fact that they closed up the tented structure that was there previously with tacky plastic plants, fairylights and reeds didnt bode well. The front of house manager was very friendly, but the service was absolutely shocking. We filled up our own wine glasses, and had to ask two times for an ashtray and the food was ridiculously expensive, and then your not even allowed to eat burgers or pizza in the evening? Only during the day - apparently. So, we proceeded to order pasta, which is very expensive for the amount and quality that you get. My pasta had a burnt tomato in it and tasted vulgar. The winelist also used to have cheap options, but that has also changed. Now you are paying a 200-300% mark up on cheap wines thats not even worth a sip. Absolutely ridiculous.So, after last night we will not be back. Not after what theyve done to the place, food-, wine- & style wise
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  • Very average food - had to send tuna back, overcooked. The second attempt was better, but not marvelous. Prices not cheap. Ambiance zero - very low ceilings and tatty tiled floor. However, restaurant very full. We wont go back.
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  • This is probably the worst food and service that I have ever had the misfortune to endure .
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  • The following is an e-mail that was received on the 11th of Feb 09 from one of our guests,To All The Management & Staff at Pepenero Yesterday was my 1 year anniversary and my girlfriend and I decided to try out Pepenero, as it looked really good and we also heard good things about Pepenero.I called Pepenero to ask if it would be possible to have flowers put on my table and have rose petals scattered over the table. I spoke to Lauren & Caronne about this request and they were more than helpful and willing to assist me with my request. I was so impressed by there professionalism and friendliness.My original reservation was for 9pm. I called to move it twice. This change in reservation was gladly done to get my table ready with flowers earlier was done without a problem.When we arrived at the restaurant we were greeted by the friendly staff, shown to our table, which was absolutely stunning. Lauren came around to introduce herself which was very nice and our waiter, Patrick, was excellent. He and another manager were so helpful in perfecting a cocktail to my girlfriends satisfaction that they even took it back twice until she was happy with it. So from my girlfriend , Jane, & Myself, we would like to thank everyone at Pepenero for an unforgettable evening. We will definitely see you guys again soon.Regards,Azlam & Jane - (Letter shortened)
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  • How embarassing that tourists are drawn to this well-located restaurant. As a local I had not yet tried it out and found it strange that no friends of mine had either. Last night I found out why. 20 mins to get menus from being seated (after waiting 15 mins in the bar for our booked table to be prepared). A request for order 1 minute after receiving said menu. Sushi was good (bumped the food rating to 2), if expensive, like everything else. I could have prepared a better avo, rocket and parmesan salad - the avo was so chunky it could have been cut by a four year old. My mojito never arrived. Neither did the mashed potato the waiter recommended I have with my main meal. They should change the descriptiion of kingklip fillet - it was more like spice and pepper encrusted end of fish that cost a fortune. Not that I could share this, as no-one asked. We persevered and ordered coffee and desserts from the hostess (waiter nowhere to be seen). We reminded the hostess about the coffees, 20 mins after ordering. She apologised profoundly and scuttled off. 10 mins later we reminded the waiter. He returned to say that the coffees were on the house and on their way (another 10 mins later!). And then they arrived cold! Also didnt enjoy the outdoor seating area because despite being completely roofed over we had way-too-close guests on our right blowing smoke onto us and a cigar smoker 2 tables down fumigating the spot.Pepenero, you will never see us again, even though we are at Wakame across the road at least once a week.
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  • The following excerpt is from an e-mail we recieved from one of our guests,Just wanted to thank you for an absolutely awesome media launch for Kathy van Zeeland. The food was great, the service was amazing and everything looked beautiful. You really were so unbelievably helpful, from setting up our beautiful room to unpacking our bags from the boxes, so THANK YOU! We are going to be doing continuous launches for our new collections and other new brands, so you’ll be sure to see us again soon.
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  • The following excerpt is from an e-mail we recieved from one of our guests,Just wanted to thank you for an absolutely awesome media launch for Kathy van Zeeland. The food was great, the service was amazing and everything looked beautiful. You really were so unbelievably helpful, from setting up our beautiful room to unpacking our bags from the boxes, so THANK YOU! We are going to be doing continuous launches for our new collections and other new brands, so you’ll be sure to see us again soon.
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  • Great location, but kitsch interior and much to big for a gourmet restaurant. Much overpriced for the food which is on a lower bistro level cuisine for gourmet prices to put it in friendly terms. Bad service, too. We will after two visits never go back and waste money
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  • thoroughly disappointing - food and drinks totally over priced and pretty tasteless. Would not recommend or return.
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  • Very diaspointing ! If it was not for the cocktails and bar man- great decor would never go back !
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  • For our first visit to Pepenero we were a little disappointed to say the least.We arrived a few minutes late for our booking but were shown to a great table rightby the wall – this has fantastic views up and down the stretch – which kept us in good spirits throughout the day. We started with a bottle of Graham Beck Brut Rose, I was a little disappointed with the wine list’s Italian wine section (3 whites and 3 Reds) as this is an up market Italian Restaurant – No effort was made to speak about or even offer these fine wines.For our first course we had Tuna Carpaccio and 6 oysters.The Tuna had no flavour to speak of, it was served with a caper mayonnaisethat totally dominated any flavour that might have been left over from allthe olive oil the tuna was soaked in.I have been working in the industry for a number of years, and being a regular seafood eater I was very surprised that at this prestigious venue our oysters came to the table spawning (milky), does the Chef or Kitchen Pass Manager not check them before they are sent out? One stank so much that the table next door commented on the smell.I was however very impressed with the Managers insight into our dissatisfaction as he quickly came over to sort it out and replaced them with fresh ones.For our second course my girlfriend went with one of the specials for the day, a grilled Pepenero sole with 3 prawns – we were informed that all main dishes on the menu came without veg or starch, so we ordered a side of veg to go with her meal. Unfortunately, her main came with veg! What a waste…The sole was great, grilled to perfection, juicy and soft, the prawns though were overcooked and hard - as well as flavourless.I had the asparagus risotto with 3 pan-fried scallops as optional extras. I was not impressed at all – the portion was like jungle oats on a cold Cape Town winters morning, far too much, it was thickened not with cream and butter but with flour and cheese, as well as being over done. My scallops that were pan-fried in seafood butter were dry and hard (I’m taking it that the seafood butter was my girlfriend prawns and garlic butter!) and had very little taste. Our second bottle of wine, Bouchard Finlayson S.B was no doubt magnificent but quickly warmed as our ice bucket was not replenished.In general the restaurant in very soothing to the eye but for us failed terribly in the department that matters most.The staff is attentive and friendly which is refreshing for what some call “a stiff restaurant”, the Manager was always on the floor and could be seen 99% of the time.We were there on Sunday from 13h20 – 17h00.Will definitely give Pepenero another chance and hope that we don’t catch them on a bad day again.
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  • Pepeneros was a pleasant surprise. I loved the great mix of chic and trendy, lady Godivas room, and sweeping sea views. The outdoors seating makes it the perfect place for a hot summers evening near the sea.The food was great with good portion sizes. I had the lamb duo which I found a little gratuitous. A huge amount of lamb that left me feeling overdone. But Im sure someone with a bigger appetite would have made an easier meal of it than I did.Definitely recommended.
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  • I love Pepenero. Cape Town has a lot of fabulous restaurants. We have explored quiet a few but I am yet to be blown away as I have been by Pepenero. Their white lindt chocolate cheese cake is the best ever and I absolutely enjoy their lamb duo (chops) and even their butternut is great! The ambience and the view of the ocean make it the best for me.
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  • The food was absouletly fantastic and the atmosphere really was amazing. I would recommend that place any time. Five out of five for everything.!!!!!!!
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Facilities

  • Accepts credit cards
  • Alfresco
  • Booking required
  • Cocktails
  • Eat Out reviewed
  • Functions
  • Licensed
  • Parking
  • Smoking
  • Vegetarian
  • Wheelchair

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