From Thursday 21 April to Saturday 23 April, the Mercedes-Benz Bokeh Fashion Film Festival will take place at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. In honour of all the fashionable filmmakers who’ll be in town, we rounded up some of Cape Town’s most unique and creative restaurants.
This Strand Street bar takes visitors back in time with working rotary phones on the tables (which have a direct line to the barman), chintzy lamps and Persian carpets. Pop in for a drink or a light bite to eat.
Knock on the glass of the Honest chocolate shop and a bouncer waiting in the shadows will let you into the diminutive gin bar at the back. Crumbling brickwork of the heritage building, copper details and an old cash register set the tone for an evening of sipping on artisanal gins in clever cocktails.
At just 58m2, this tiny breakfast and lunch spot crams a lot of style into a small space. Inspired by grocer shops of the past, The General Store boasts a custom blonde-wood facade and a unique shelving system stocked with provisions and homeware. Fresh, inventive salads are loaded with tasty treats like almonds, herbs and cheese, and sell out early.
Owner Giulio Lorreggian reputedly commissioned a ‘white café’ from designer Michael Chandler of Chandler House. The result is a magnificently light and bright café blends warm white walls and exposed brickwork with marble tables and buff leather seating. Try Nonna’s eggs – creamy parmesan-loaded scrambled eggs with baby spinach, bacon and balsamic-roasted tomatoes on a toasted croissant – for breakfast, or sample the harvest table at lunch.
Situated on the fan walk, Jacques Erasmus’s heavenly restaurant serves design and deliciousness in equal doses. Try a crumbly white brioche topped with whipped feta, slivers of pear and a heap of parma ham, French toast made from mosbolletjiebrood, or one of the incredible cakes. (The pear-and-coconut cake is ridiculously good right now). The design of the space is constantly evolving, but expect muted colours with quirky touches like paintings mounted on the ceiling, and oversize delicious monster leaves or branches of magnolia displayed instead of a flower arrangement.
Luke Dale-Roberts’s signature restaurants The Test Kitchen and The Pot Luck Club are certainly stylish places to dine – but you’ll be hard pressed to get a booking at short notice. Make do instead with the top chef’s no-reservations lunch spot. Constructed using up-cycled containers, Naturalis serves up inspired lunches at the Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock.
Designed by Haldane Martin, this steampunk-inspired space has a bevy of accolades to its name. It’s full of magnificent machines, raw pressed-steel ceilings and over-stuffed leather chairs, and even the staff are outfitted from head to toe in bespoke steampunk costumes made by Little Hattery. The menu is equally quirky – there’s a pork belly Benedict – and the coffee is excellent.
A dark staircase lit only by neon lettering leads the way up to this tiny cocktail bar in what was once a grain storehouse. Seating just 22 people, the bar is a partnership between Alliance brands (which also owns the hip coffee shop, House of Machines) and Australian bartender Luke Whearty. Expect cocktails that are simultaneously hot and cold, or laced with unusual ingredients like pollen.