Top 5 hottest restaurants in and around Cape Town


It’s been said before, and we’ll says it again, the Cape region is one of the best culinary regions in the world. This also means there’s always new restaurants that are hot or not. To keep track of the ones you really need to pay a visit next time you’re in the area, we listed the hottest restaurants at the moment for you.

Janse & Co

The restaurant has been open for almost 2 years now, and it’s fast becoming one of the most sought after places to go on a culinary journey. After Arno Janse van Rensburg made furore in the winelands outside Cape Town, he came back to the bustling city bowl to start his own project called Janse & Co. On his side is Liezl Odendaal who worked with some of the biggest names in the South African food industry. And being a very gifted pastry chef, the dessert lovers will love to try one (or more) of her creations.

While guest will still enjoy a fine dining experience, the mood is more casual and the focus is on the ingredients which are sourced locally. The interior of the restaurant is beautifully done, without too much details which will take away the attention that needs to been drawn to the plates of amazing food. The darker color of the interior just makes the food pop even more. In summer time, you can also eat outside on the terrace, giving it an even more casual look and feel. And the beautiful wine storage is just another testimony to their commitment to deliver great wine pairings too.

Manor Kitchen at Lanzerac

This well knows wine estate which dates back to 1692 has everything you could wish for when visiting the winelands near Cape Town. Opulent accommodation, a luxurious spa, amazing wines which you can enjoy in the tasting room, but most of all 2 restaurants of which the Manor Kitchen is the more formal one. The kitchen produces some classic dishes with a modern twist, of course paired with the wines from the estate. Testimony of their confidence to serve wonderful dishes, is the fact that you can look into the kitchen from the restaurant.

Rather a morning person? No problem as South Africans like good food all day, hence why you can enjoy a sumptuous breakfast buffet which will get you fueled up. Or if you are more into the tradition of afternoon tea, you must visit on a Saturday to indulge yourself while sipping some bubbly which is produced in house. Lanzerac has everything to offer you an amazing time, and that’s why it is so popular these days. It’s a place where heritage meets modern times, and it clearly seems to work.

Fyn

Right in the city center of Cape Town you’ll find this gorgeous new restaurant which opened about a year ago. The restaurant itself is beautifully designed with a massive wooden ceiling feature which absorbs all of your attention when you walk in. Next you’ll see that the kitchen and restaurant are all in the same room and there’s a buzz that draws your attention to the chefs and the artwork they are producing right in front of your eyes. With names like Peter Tempelhoff and Ashley Moss in the kitchen, you know you’re in for a ride.

With a clear Japanese theme running through the menu, you can expect amazing attention to detail, surprising combinations and beautifully plated food all day long. Don’t forget to go for the wine pairing if that’s your thing, cause Fyn restaurant has some great pairings with sometimes lesser known wine estates from the Cape region. And don’t forget to check the stunning mural which is the perfect mix of African and Japanese influences. The perfect spot for that selfie you were looking to snap all day.

Cuvée at Simonsig

Being located in the wine estate which invented the MCC (Méthode Cap Classique), which is the sparkling wine made in South Africa following the methods used in the famous French Champagne region, this restaurant has the heritage of Simonsig going for it. But of course it also delivers some amazing food to match the quality of the wines which are produced on the estate.

This restaurant is bringing back all the good memories you have from your childhood when eating those hearty meals while being surrounded by family. Of course, Cuvée has given the food a modern twist, but the idea remains the same. This place is jam-packed on Sundays and understandably so. The food is superb, without being too gourmet, and accompanied by the best wines the estate produces. A place which is built by one family, in order for other families to enjoy it.

Le coin Francais

If you like culinary masterpieces, this is one place you just can’t miss. As one of the newest hot-spots in Franschhoek, the culinary capital of South Africa, it has quickly made a name for itself. Chef and owner Darren Badenhorst earned his stripes in some of the most luxurious lodges in Mozambique and Stellenbosch, before starting his own adventure. And it was an instant success.

Putting a modern twist on some nostalgic food, and presenting it as a piece of art on a plate is something few can pull off, but Darren masters it to perfection. Add Jasper Venter as the maître d and you know it is the perfect combination. He was trained in La Residence, which is among the top 20 hotels in the world, so he knows a thing or two about managing a restaurant and making sure all guests are having a wonderful experience.

Have you visited any of these restaurants before? And if so, do you agree with their spot in this list? Or do you have any other hot-spot which we need to check out?


Comments (20)

  1. Jim Fitzpatrick says:

    You write about great desserts at Janse & Co and go on to say about having more than one. My appetite isn’t quite what it used to be but somehow my waistline is bigger than it used to be. One of the things that I like is when a restaurant does a taster dessert of 3 or 4 small servings, just a bite, of their classic desserts. Do Janse & Co do that? Another thing I like is a mini dessert served with a small coffee? Is that on their menu?

    • Grace Stone says:

      I quite like those taster style desserts, too. Both small plates and taster portion deserts are things I wish more places would offer. My appetite isn’t what it used to be either but dessert is something I can usually manage, but I do find it appealing when a restaurant has ‘small plates’ on their menu at a reduced price. Not many will box up leftovers as a ‘doggy bag’, which is a shame as it can seem like such a waste if you can’t manage it all.

    • Liezl says:

      At Janse & co we offer a tasting menu for dinner, where all the portions are balanced and guests can choose to order from 3 – 7 courses (or more). Dessert portions are in line with our tasting menu. Each dish is designed specifically for the ingredients used, if there is a request to make the portions smaller, we would try our best to accommodate our guests and not loose the essence of the dish.

    • Grace Stone says:

      That sounds fantastic, Liezl. Such an extensive tasting menu like that, with 3 to 7 courses, or even more, is a brilliant way to get to try a little of everything. I love that you put your guests first and try to accommodate their needs. We need more restaurants like this! :)

  2. Julian Bird says:

    Of all these restaurants the one that appeals to me the most is Fyn. I sort of like the idea of Japanese food but I can get overwhelmed by what is a very different food culture to what I grew up with. What I think I might like about Fyn is the merging of African and Japanese which is probably better suited to my tastebuds. Also the decor looks to be a real work of art.

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      If Japanese is your thing, then Fyn should surely be on your list. There are minimal African influences in the food, but more in the interior decor.

  3. Grace Stone says:

    I love the aesthetics of Fyn, the Japanese restaurant. I’ve been trying to work out the ceiling though. It almost looks like layers of mushrooms and occasioning bare bulb lights. It just says a ‘wooden ceiling featureI’. What actually are those things? It’s got a very cool vibe, like midway between rustic and contemporary.

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      Those are wooden disks that hang from the ceiling. If you go on their Instagram account, you can see the work that went into it! It surely works for the room and the restaurant in general.

    • Grace Stone says:

      Aah, now it makes more sense. I Googled for the website and found their Instagram. I see they’ve been nominated for an Eat Out Restaurant Award 2019, too. When you see the ceiling a little closer up and at a different angle it’s easier to get a feel for what that art is and how it’s suspended, and it’s incredible. I really do love it, and you’re right about how it works wonders for the room and restaurant in general. It’s a focal piece and very distinctive. The Insta account is pretty good for making you hungry with all the lush looking food, too! :)

  4. Piers says:

    I never really understand why a place can be hot one month and then a backwater just weeks later. Even if you’ve got a clever concept and a highly creative chef it isn’t always enough to pull in the punters. I suppose location, location, location had got a lot to do with it. If you’ve got bars and clubs in the locality that are trendy and going well there’s often a knock-on effect for the restaurants. It shouldn’t really matter but eating in a quiet and half-empty restaurant can be somewhat soulless, however good the food is.

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      I get what you mean, but I do feel that often these places are hot because they are new, and become more of a “go to” spot afterwards for people who want to make sure they have a nice culinary experience. By then the talk of the town might be focused on some other new and trendy places but the experience will still remain the same.

  5. Eliana says:

    How can you not mention The Test Kitchen by the world-class chef Luke Dale Roberts? This is one of its kind fine-dining restaurant that has to its credit many international awards, accolades and nominations including the Best Restaurant in Africa 2018, and also qualifies the list of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. The eatery’s highlight is its diverse menu with all international dishes being prepared with a unqiue South African blend. Also, the interior is creatively designed with one romantic dark setting and another fully-lit chic dining area.
    Key: Make a reservation well before time as the place is always fully booked as its open from Tuesday to Saturday between 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm.
    Location: The Old Biscuit Mill, 375 Albert Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      Reason why is because I wanted to highlight some of the newer restaurants which haven’t been there for a long time, or had some overhaul in some way.
      I’m happy to write about the top restaurants in Cape Town in order to include places like the Test Kitchen, Waterkloof Restaurant in the Sky, La Colombe and so many others, but that wasn’t the purpose of this list.
      And indeed, I agree that Luke Dale Roberts is world class, having tried his creations at both the Test Kitchen and at the Saxon when he had his pop up restaurant there.

    • Eliana says:

      Agree Kristof Eyckmans. All the places you have highlighted are comparatively newer and the pace at which they have grown their customer base is truly mind-blowing. Also, I didn’t mean to offend you. I apologize, if you found me harsh. Actually, I am a regular customer of Test Kitchen and have got so much emotional attachment with the place. So, it just came out straight from the heart. Hope you understand :)
      And yes, I would love to see your list of Top Eatries in Cape Town!!!

    • Emma Baker says:

      Wow. That sounds tempting!!! A restaurant run by a world-class chef. Kristof it would be soo nice, if you can mention the restaurant’s one or two speciality. You know it gets easier to decide then.
      Looking forward to try the place on my upcoming trip to South Africa.

  6. Xoia says:

    So, I am a die-hard sushi fan and have tried the dish in Fyn. But now I am looking for some more hot sushi ventures in Cape Town. Would be delighted to hear some recommendations.

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      I suggest you try Willoughby’s and Nobu. Both have some of the best sushi in Cape Town

    • Leo Cameron says:

      I would like to make another recommendation here! Xoia, if you are hunting for that perfect sushi spot, then perhaps Kyoto Garden is also your thing. This cosy street food joint at Kloof Nek Road serves authentic Japanese Cuisine that never fails to disappoint the guests (heard from friends that it has won the Eat Out award for the Best Seafood Restaurant in Cape Town). Their entire sea food range is always soo fresh- from fish, duck, prawns, eel, farmed abalone and sea urchin to Mozambican conch, Alaskan Crabs, scallops and salmon. There is a wide array of meals to choose from. Sushi, sashimi, salads, soups, desserts, wine, cocktails. You name it! Also the eatery owns the largest collection of Japanese Whiskey in whole of Cape Town.
      P.S. Do try their Winter Special if you pay a visit in the season.

  7. Charlize F. says:

    Though I love Japanese food, it would be a shame to not try the local dishes even if it was a fusion. So for me, I would definitely try Manor Kitchen. And I heard that breakfast is a must here.

    • Kristof Eyckmans says:

      Great choice as the breakfast at Manor House is indeed legendary. However, Cuvée also has a small, yet brilliant breakfast menu If you like to have a food coma before midday.

Leave a reply



Your actual name, not your online persona, website name, company name or keywords, otherwise your comment won't be published





Please do not advertise and make sure your comment adds value, otherwise we regret that it won't be published. Links are not allowed here - if you would like to advertise, please contact us for details.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.

Our readers also enjoyed these posts…