The restaurants we’re going to dine at this year

After a year of (mostly) being cooped up indoors, the Eat Out team have been creating our lists of the restaurants we can’t wait to visit in 2021. Here are some of our top picks to add to your bucket list too.

The Melting Pot (Elgin)

Capetonians will be familiar with the brand, which moved into a pop-up space in the City Bowl last year, but usually you can find them at Oak Valley Estate in Elgin. “This is a lovely location,” says social media specialist Katy Rose. “And the chefs keep raving about the food, which is a great sign!” Boasting food based on global cuisines, this is the perfect spot to go to if you’re missing the sounds and tastes of foreign lands. Tuck into ceviche, pork bao, dhal, tacos and more from all four corners of the world.

Basalt Restaurant (Melrose)

“If I allow myself to dream about local travel (and let go of any niggling worries about taking a flight),” Natalie Wilson, the head of food at Eat Out, says, “I would love to visit Basalt in Melrose. Their March menu looks sound, and as it gets a little cooler I think some crispy polenta with a perfectly medium-rare fillet sounds dreamy.” Chef David Hayes’ fine-dining restaurant offers a three-course dinner menu for R390 per person. In addition to the aforementioned fillet, you can enjoy ravioli or kingklip, after a starter of fried calamari or chargrilled leeks and asparagus. 


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Mochi Mochi (Cape Town City Bowl)

“Close to home (I live in Cape Town’s CBD), I am dying to get down to the little pop-up wagashi spot, Mochi Mochi, by the Tjing Tjing team,” says Tessa Purdon, Eat Out’s head of content. Mochi is a Japanese sweet treat made from glutinous sticky rice. Mochi Mochi prides itself on its various flavour combinations, such as chocolate brownie, chocolate and cherry, and passion fruit and white chocolate. “Their date caramel and nut mochi with toasted coconut is definitely high up on my list!” says Tessa.


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Yoons Eatery (White River)

“One of my closest friends moved to White River a few years ago,” says commissioning editor Lauren Goldman. “I’ve been intending to visit her, but finances and time always held me back. After a year in lockdown, though, I’ve decided no more excuses!” Lauren’s friend has a long list of restaurants she wants them to visit, but one that stands out is Yoons Eatery. Having opened last year, the restaurant is already known for its tapas-style breakfasts and roosterkoek, and they now also offer cooking classes. 

Chefs Warehouse at Tintswalo Atlantic (Hout Bay)

“This is definitely on my hit list for a celebratory dinner with family, for the next big birthday,” says Natalie about the latest addition to the Chefs Warehouse family. “It’s all about the food but also the destination. I’m keen to go a few times: once on a rainy day in winter and again in summer to have what I expect will feel like two totally different experiences.” The restaurant is situated on the iconic Chapman’s Peak Drive and offers breathtaking views along with the usual delicious fare that is associated with all Chefs Warehouses.

Po’Boys Durban (Berea)

Po’Boys New Orleans-style sandwiches have had the Eat Out team drooling for months. But for Katy, the ultimate meal has got to be their snack boxes. “This looks like all my Christmases come at once,” she says. “I just want to smash this snack box!” Dig into their version of Kentucky fried chicken, sesame chicken, jalapeno poppers and pastry-wrapped kebabs, served with fries and four homemade sauces.


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The Eatery & Wine Bar at Silver Forest Lodge (Somerset West)

“This is soon to be my new ’hood, so I was beyond excited when I discovered that Silver Forest Lodge has a new restaurant,” says Lauren. The menu is comprehensive and offers starters, mains and dessert as well as pizza and tapas. “I love tapas-style eating and I’m particularly looking forward to the croquettes and cauliflower two ways alongside a glass of white wine.”


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Canimambo Restaurant (Graskop)

For Katy, dining at a restaurant isn’t only about the food but also about enjoying good times with friends, which is why she can’t wait to visit Canimambo. “I’ve had such lovely conversations with the team from Canimambo during lockdown,” she shares. “They feel like friends already and I can’t wait to meet them.” The restaurant specialises in Portuguese-Mozambican cuisine, such as delicious Prego steak rolls, Portuguese sardines and espetadas.

Toasted (Parkwood)

Tessa has been following this female-owned coffee shop on Instagram and says she loves their concept. “The spaces seem so fun and inspiring. Plus, I adore a great toastie, so there’s that to forward to!” Their menu includes a range of toasted sandwiches that play around with classic flavour combinations. Think beetroot and cranberry marmalade with goat’s cheese; mushrooms, spinach and feta; and a tasty tuna melt.


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