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Willoughby & Co. (V&A Waterfront)

Willoughby & Co. (V&A Waterfront)
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Cost
R175 avg main meal
Ambience
Groups
Food
Japanese, Seafood, Sushi
Payment
Amex, Diners Club, Mastercard, Visa
Corkage
R75

Critic's review

Jess Spiro

Willoughby’s is nothing short of an institution in Cape Town, and even more so in the V&A Waterfront. Ever the perennial pre-movie bite or a respite from hours of shopping, Willoughby’s consistently hits the spot for fresh seafood.

Food
The fold-out menu is vast and varied and features a wide offering of Japanese-inspired dishes and sushi, as well as a number of continental classic seafood items. In all honesty, the Japanese food is the shining jewel in Willoughby’s crown. The new style sashimi, where raw thinly sliced fish is doused with a punchy yuzu-soy dressing and aromatics such as ginger, garlic and sesame seeds, may not sound like much, but when ordered with the sustainable local fish (yellow tail when we dined), it’s the scene stealer of the menu. On the sushi side, you can’t go wrong with their 4x4 offers their signature rainbow reloaded (a rainbow roll dressed in sweet soy, sesame oil and 7-spice) and their creamy rock shrimp roll (chopped tuna maki topped with their famous rock shrimp tempura). The desserts on offer are pretty standard, including malva pudding with custard and creme brulee, but hit the sweet-tooth spot nonetheless.

Drinks
Their wine list is reasonably-priced considering the tourist hub, and offers a great selection of local wines by the glass and carafe, as well as good craft beers.

Service
The wait staff here are trained for efficiency, so expect speedy service with a smile.

Ambience
There’s no getting around it, you’re dining in a mall, but the food more than makes up for it.

Best for...
The deli section, packed with hard-to-find Asian pantry items, is where your culinary dreams come true.

(2018)

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

  • Ambience
  • Service
  • Food
  • Jess Spiro

    Willoughby’s is nothing short of an institution in Cape Town, and even more so in the V&A Waterfront. Ever the perennial pre-movie bite or a respite from hours of shopping, Willoughby’s consistently hits the spot for fresh seafood.

    Food
    The fold-out menu is vast and varied and features a wide offering of Japanese-inspired dishes and sushi, as well as a number of continental classic seafood items. In all honesty, the Japanese food is the shining jewel in Willoughby’s crown. The new style sashimi, where raw thinly sliced fish is doused with a punchy yuzu-soy dressing and aromatics such as ginger, garlic and sesame seeds, may not sound like much, but when ordered with the sustainable local fish (yellow tail when we dined), it’s the scene stealer of the menu. On the sushi side, you can’t go wrong with their 4x4 offers their signature rainbow reloaded (a rainbow roll dressed in sweet soy, sesame oil and 7-spice) and their creamy rock shrimp roll (chopped tuna maki topped with their famous rock shrimp tempura). The desserts on offer are pretty standard, including malva pudding with custard and creme brulee, but hit the sweet-tooth spot nonetheless.

    Drinks
    Their wine list is reasonably-priced considering the tourist hub, and offers a great selection of local wines by the glass and carafe, as well as good craft beers.

    Service
    The wait staff here are trained for efficiency, so expect speedy service with a smile.

    Ambience
    There’s no getting around it, you’re dining in a mall, but the food more than makes up for it.

    Best for...
    The deli section, packed with hard-to-find Asian pantry items, is where your culinary dreams come true.

    • Ambience
    • Service
    • Food
  • Ashraf Booley

    Food
    The legendary sushi has a fanbase of its own. The popular 4x4 rolls are fresh, filling and packed with flavour. But even if you’ve mastered the art of eating with chopsticks, the spicy, creamy rock shrimp are so large they don’t go down in one bite. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing, is up to you. For something warmer, try the tom yum soup or Boston clam chowder, or the simply scrumptious calamari (fried or grilled) with your choice of either Sicilian, Cape Malay or green Thai curry sauce, or have it Cajun-style.

    For mains, tuck into the moreish tempura kingklip, which is laced with a deliciously sticky sweet-and-sour sauce. It comes with warm steamed rice and vegetables yakitori, but prove to be a rather odd combination (cold salad and warm rice on one plate). Not shy on portions, the tuna kebabs (two) come hot off the coals, tender and tasty with beautiful sear marks. The roasted red pepper sauce, however, lack in flavour. Signature hot and cold dishes are abundant on the menu and include seared beef tataki, chicken katsu, ginger beef and miso ramen. Considering the generous portions, it’s overall good value for money. And if you’ve got room for dessert, end off your meal with the mille-feuille.

    Drinks
    A good selection of local wines, many of which are available by the glass. Craft beer and cocktails are also on offer.

    Service
    The almost inevitable wait in the (often) long queue can take you from hungry to hangry, but tables turn over fairly quickly, so rest assured you’ll be tended to. Service is fast and efficient.

    Ambience
    The interiors are elegant and intimate, but there is limited seating at the inside counters, Most of the tables are situated in the busy throroughfare in the mall.

    And…
    Take-away options are on offer at the fish counter.

    (August 2017)

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

    • Ambience
    • Service
    • Food

User reviews

  • Best sushi in Cape Town and anywhere in SA for that matter. Spider rolls and rainbow rolls reloaded are my favorite plates to enjoy when I come to CT. Always my first stop
    • Ambience
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  • My favourite place in Cape Town to eat sushi. The food served is always at a consistently high standard.
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  • The best seafood in town and worth the wait. BUT check your bill. We were overcharged by R250 on actual bill R860 and the attitude of the waiter and the Manager on duty was "O it does happen, problem with the software system, it does sometimes keep some of the previous table items over". Sorry but this is not good enough - I am sure if the system left items off they would have corrected/replaced the system very quickly.
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  • I have always enjoyed the 4x4 at Willoughby's even before it became the 4 x 4. I even disregarded the impersonal ambiance of a large shopping mall to enjoy some tasty sushi but this past Friday experience was outrageous! A live mouse dropped, from the rafters above, onto our table of food. My neighbor picked the mouse up by its tail and squished it in his paper napkin. He then called the waiter over and handed him the mouse. The waiter was nonchalant and joined the manager's ridiculous comment of "what do you expect being next to the sea?" Really? I have been going to Willoughby's for years and sadly their food and ambiance have gone down hill. The least they could have done is apologize and shown some sort of concern.
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  • Fish is just amazing Service could be sometimes better, but they usually are good.
    • Ambience
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    • Food

Facilities

  • Accepts credit cards
  • Child friendly
  • Dinner
  • Eat Out reviewed
  • Food
  • Licensed
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Takeaways
  • Vegetarian
  • Wheelchair

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