Review: Woodstock’s all-day bistro, Bones Kitchen & Bar

Run by industry stalwart Rudi Minnaar and a super team, Woodstock’s Bones Kitchen & Bar seems to have nailed what it takes to set up a fantastic bistro. Jess Spiro goes for a taste.


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Fast Facts

Cost: R130 average main meal
Food type: Steak, grill
Parking: At the centre
Star rating: Food and drinks: 4; Service: 3; Ambience: 4


The food sticks to a tried and tested formula wherein high-quality ingredients are treated with respect and prepared simply. The ethically sourced meat (supplied by Ryan Boon) is used in dishes that uphold the meat’s integrity. For starters you can look forward to delightfully uncomplicated chicken tortellini in a clear broth, dotted with mushrooms and finely shredded kale. If you’re looking for something less virtuous, opt for the parmesan bon bons – deep-fried parmesan croquettes in a hearty mushroom ragout that you won’t be able to get out of your mind.


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For mains, a steak has to be the order of the day if you’re a meat-eater, and the bone-in rib-eye certainly doesn’t disappoint. Basted in a sauce lovingly reminiscent of the steakhouses you frequented as a child, the meat is crusty and charred on the outside yet meltingly marbled on the inside. You have a choice of classic sauces – béarnaise, red wine, bordelaise or pepper – to go with your meat. The bearnaise is fantastically creamy and the pepper, with its use of green pepper, is bright and spiced. The thick-cut fries are also a welcome accompaniment, especially when used to mop up the remaining sauce.


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Offerings of chocolate torte and lemon tart will tempt you into ordering dessert.


The wine list is long and well-priced but are only available by the bottle. If you’re after a glass, you’re limited to a disappointingly limited selection of red, white or rosé from Lord Somerset. It’s a little annoying, as the full list is exciting, but the by-the-glass options make for fairly easy drinking. There’s also a neat list of cocktails and beers.


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The service is warm and welcoming, but I would have liked to have been talked through the menu in better detail upon arrival. This aside, all questions are well-answered and the food comes out swiftly. That the owners are there on the floor, ensuring everyone is happy and taken care of, adds a familial feel to the experience.


The Palms is a daytime shopping centre, and is therefore very empty at night. However, Bones seems to thrive on it – you immediately feel relaxed and settled. While this isn’t the restaurant for a jol, it’s certainly a space where you can have a delicious, quiet meal with someone you love.

Best for…

Quiet family dinners or date night.

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

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