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Looking for restaurant advice in Franschoek and Cape Town

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We have a few nights in each and we're struggling based upon "favorites" from friends but always worry the recommendation may be dated and the restaurant is tired. Price isn't an issue and we like great food (this is Chowhound after all), good atmosphere and not too fussy (although sounds like no where in Cape Town is that fussy).

Cape Town restaurants - we have two nights and we're debating between Blues Restaurant, La Colombe and Savoy Cabbage. Welcome thoughts between the three or another recommendation. We're staying in Camps Bay, but not opposed to a cab ride.

Franschoek - Le Quartier Francais (the Tasting Room), Ryan's Kitchen and Le Bon Vivant. Any thoughts between the three or other recommendations? We have two nights here as well.

Welcome any ideas for lunch besides Chapman Peak's calamari.

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  1. Wise for you to check out other Cape Town and Winelands postings from the past two years.

    That said, the greatest lunch is at OLYMPIA CAFE in Kalk Bay...then walk off the meal around this colorful town for a few streets in either direction.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Mike R.

      Be warned that it's usually very busy and extremely noisy.

      I prefer Wild Olive or The Annex.

    2. I wasn't really impressed the last 2 times I went to Savoy Cabbage.
      By Blues Restaurant, do you mean the one at the Promenade in Camps Bay? I've heard many reports of bad service and overpriced food, so I haven't been there personally.

      3 Replies
      1. re: haiku.

        We did mean Blues in Camps Bay and agree the reviews have been spotty. We may opt for it since it's close and would be easy after a day of driving to the point, Kalk Bay, etc. I did see that Kitima looks interesting and doesn't appear to be too far from the Bay Hotel. Question is a) is it good and b) is it easy to get cabs to/from?

        We've also heard Harbour House sounds good in Kalk Bay (although are some of the more casual options good?). We have a lot of "nice" meals scheduled in Cape Town and Franschhoek so think we need some low key ones.

        Realize Kitima isn't low key but Thai food sounds pretty good (if it's worth it) for a change after all the rich meals.

        1. re: NapaTJ

          There are quite a few restaurants on that strip in Camps Bay, so you do have choices right there if you're not sure about Blues.
          I've heard good things about Kitima, but haven't had the opportunity to go there yet (bit of a distance for me). It's not far from Camps Bay, so I don't think cabs will be an issue.

          Harbour House is very good, but the view has a big part to play. My experience has been that the food is always good (not spectacular), if on the pricey side. Right below Harbour House is Polana, a similar view and the more affordable option (and I have a friend who maintains the food is better too).

          When you're in Kalk Bay, take a walk along Main Road and see what may suit your tastes and count as low-key. It's a very popular breakfast/brunch/lunch area, and most of the places are good. The ice cream at the Ice Shop makes a good dessert after that walk :)

          Just be warned that there's ongoing roadworks on Main Road in Kalk Bay that you will have to walk around.

          In Hout Bay, you always have the touristy Mariner's Wharf - http://www.marinerswharf.com/.

          And off the topic of food, you should check out the Franschhoek Motor Museum when you're in the area. Very interesting even if you're not into cars.

          1. re: haiku.

            Thanks haiku. Luck Fish & Chips sounded interesting as well. May give Kitima a shot since reasonably close to Camps Bay.

      2. So no one has mentioned Ruben's who has restaurants in both CT and Franschhoek. Read about him in Saveur and menus look great. What does anyone think? Ruben mentions Bread and Wine Vineyard for lunch in Franschhoek? Where in Stellenbosch? Where is the best place for well prepared African dishes such as ostrich or antelope?We will be in CT for a week and have a car so we can do lots of day trips.

        1. What a great place -The Millers Thumb for very fresh fish and meat. Pre dinner drinks, 3 courses, bottle of cheapish wine and coffee - R680 for people from England we thought more than reasonable

          Give it a go - we did and will return again.