Upper Bloem

Upper Bloem
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R100 avg main meal
Groups, Special occasions, Views
Contemporary fare, Tapas
Mastercard, Visa

Critic's review

Zola Nene

The restaurant serves a set menu that is divided into three sections, each consisting of three dishes. Every plate is made to share. The first wave of dishes includes Henry’s signature croquettes, this time flavoured with smoked snoek, accompanied by a lightly cured kabeljou served on a crunchy sago crisp. The Cape Malay-style onions are an ode to pickled fish and have a wonderfully mellow tanginess and spice.

The second wave brings with it delicately spiced carrots served with sharp goat’s cheese. The plump, tender mussels are served in a deliciously light and flavourful broth studded with samphire and spiked with herb oil. The quail ‘Kabaab’, as it’s called on the menu, is a take on the Scotch egg – a soft-boiled egg surrounded by shredded beef on a bed of tender sweet beetroots. It makes for a truly sublime mouthful.

The third wave is the heartiest and richest: duck breast with quince and a crisp almost poppadum-like crisp (on the menu it is referred to as a samosa crisp). The beef short rib is accompanied by crisp nuggets of sweetbreads, as well as thinly sliced pickled tongue and fresh green apple that gently cuts the richness of the dish. A definite highlight is the triple-cooked potatoes. Almost fondant-like in texture, it’s sprinkled with a spicy crumble and I could honestly have eaten an entire bowl of it.

The dessert selection is an optional extra and comes served on a board to share. The ‘After school’ is a fun play on nostalgic tinned fruit with evaporated milk. The strawberry lollies are thin caramels studded with popping candy and satisfyingly bitter curry leaf. There is also a delicious truffle included from My Sugar, a local Sea Point confectionary.

Each item on the menu, with its tastes and textures, is carefully curated to evoke a nostalgic memory. This is a refreshing and honest taste of Cape Town as told through the palate of a Capetonian chef.

The drinks menu is extensive, offering local wines and craft beers. There is also a selection of liquors, including Japanese saké.

The space is beautifully decorated. Tables lined up against the wall allows patrons full view of the open-plan kitchen. The chefs work meticulously and relatively quietly in the kitchen as they plate up the food.

The service staff is well rehearsed and trained, with each having extensive knowledge of the menu. Service is attentive and timely.

Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our full editorial policy here.

(May 2018)

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User reviews

  • Fabulous food, great vibe and service was excellent. Seems like a seasoned restaurant rather than a new kid on the block well done
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  • Had the most wonderful experience at this new addition to the restaurant scene last night. The waiters were so attentive without imposing. We chose one tasting menu with wine and the other without. Generous carafes of delicious and well-paired wine meant that we could share each one. The food is beautifully plated and every mouth full delicious. Flavours well balanced and thoughtfully combined. Love the Bo-Kaap take on the flavours and the addition of indigenous plants like spekboom and suur vy. A must if you're wanting fine dining without pomp and ceremony, ambience is relaxed and comfortable. Highly recommended, especially if you want a taste of Cape Malay flavour in small punchy bursts of flavour.
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    • Food


Set menu - Menu currently unavailable


  • Accepts credit cards
  • Booking required
  • Dinner
  • Food
  • Licensed
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Serves food

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