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Mar 30, 2008 12:05 PM

Living in Cape Town for four months: where to eat?


We are a group of four adventurous eaters and would love recommendations for great places to try in Cape Town and the surrounding area.

We are interested in recommendations for all price ranges, spice levels, locations, and food types as we will be living in Cape Town for four months.

Also if anyone has a place they would absolutely avoid eating at, please let us know!



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  1. Hi Kate:

    You sound like you're in the same boat I'm in -- I arrived in Cape Town about a month ago and am eager to eat my way across the city. Look foward to reading the responses you get. So far I've had a mixed experience and thought I'd share some of the highlights and lowlights with you.

    I had a very interesting takeaway at Yusra's on Main Street in Sea Point. It's just a little halal deli that's hard to miss -- a few blocks into Sea Point from Glengariff road on the ocean side of the street. I had a dish called bunny chow, which is basically a hollowed out chunk of white bread filled with a curry. My husband and I both liked it -- tasted good and was pretty novel. I also got a gatsby there -- hotdogs, fries (chips here), and peri peri sauce (spicy sweet chili sauce) on a bulkie roll. I got half and it was the size of a big submarine sandwich. I wasn't a big fan of this but it may have been the fact that the fries were soft and not very crispy (one of my pet peeves) and the hot dogs were rubbery. I may be picky though, I was raised in Chicago and take hot dogs seriously.

    I have had very good sushi at Willoughby's at the V&A Waterfront -- the rock shrimp on spicy tuna roll (ask the waiter, they'll know which one I'm talking about) is flying out of the kitchen there every few minutes, and with good reason. Delicious. I'm a sashimi fan myself, but the first time I was there that roll caught my eye and I ordered it the next time I was in -- good move! The sashimi was great too, though.

    Getting mixed reviews from me is Hengsheng (aka Jing Jing's Chinese Takeaway) on Main Rd in Seapoint. I am always on the hunt for Chinese noodle soup and thought I'd give the place a try since it had gotten a good review in Eat Out 2008. When I had lunch in Jing Jing's I enjoyed the pork and leek dumplings and pork gelatin (like head chinese head cheese) in soy sauce and vinegar...but when I ordered takeaway a few days later for dinner I was disappointed. I had a different server and the distinct suspicion that we were getting served "tourist quality fare". I will go in person for dinner again and see what the quality is.

    Also a bit of a disappointment was the Lebanse restaurant The Cedar in Sea Point (didn't get around a lot until recently). The host talked a big game about coming by and trying the shwarma (which they only serve for lunch) but it was a disappointment. Clearly not meat that was cooked on a spit, tough, and small portions. I'd be willing to hear an argument on why I should give it another try, but was definitely disappointed.

    I'd like to hear from others about where I can find some good Cape Malay and other African cuisines and they don't have to be in Sea Point (though I'd like to know if anyone has tried the African restaurant in Sea Point next to the beauty salon)...

    1. Wembley Square has a bunch of cafes and restaurants which are great for lunch.

      I've also reviewed a bunch of the restaurants in Cape Town where we ate on my blog. Hope it helps!

      I'd skip most of the Waterfront restaurants.