Chris von Ulmenstein


The Sweet Service Award goes to  the City of Cape Town, and its Trainee Cashier Jarred Knipe, for the speedy service in renewing the licence for my car at the Civic Centre. I came armed with a copy of my ID and once again the proof of my residence, which I had organised especially elsewhere prior to my visit to the Motor Vehicle Registration Officer. One is allocated a number on arrival, after enquiring  why one is visiting. My number was about eleven numbers after the counters servicing clients. Many clients did not respond to the numbers. Before my number came up, a roving admin staff member asked me what I had come for and directed me to the Cash Office immediately. Jarred is a relatively new staff member, still on training! He completed the paperwork and payment within five minutes, it having taken me a total of ten minutes to renew the registration of the car, something that has taken an hour at least in the past! I had to pinch myself that I was not dreaming. And to add to the service delight, Service Manager Hennie Kriel, replaced the licence disc for me when I popped in at Audi Cape Town for assistance with something completely unrelated!  (more…)

On 2 January of this year I adopted a stream near the Camps Bay Tidal Pool, having seen it clogged up with plastic and other rubbish left by picnickers on the infamous New Year’s Day. Since then I visit the stream every day, to clean it up, removing all the rubbish from it. A week ago Straatwerk workers assisted me in removing all the water weeds that had grown in the stream, and the rubbish that was trapped underneath the plants, returning the stream into its beautiful former self, an asset for Camps Bay and other Capetonians.  (more…)

JAN Restaurant is our country’s best restaurant, despite it being based in Nice, not only in serving traditional South African dishes in fine din8ng style, but also in being the only South African Michelin-star restaurant. Yesterday JAN Restaurant received one Michelin star for the fourth year running!  (more…)

A very recent restaurant opening is that of Café Paris in Green Point, a space I was watching being transformed when I drove past on Main Road. As my friend from Paris is visiting again, we decided to give it a try for a late breakfast/brunch yesterday.  (more…)

The Sweet Service Award goes to the Apple iStore in the Waterfront, and its technician in the Service Department, who helped me efficiently to transfer all my data in my cellphone to a new iPhone XR which I had upgraded to at Vodacom. He used the iCloud to quickly and efficiently transfer the data, and helped me to set up the phone. Apple charges R200 for this service compared to the R150 by Vodacom, a small extra price to pay for far greater efficiency.  (more…)

A rumour that Woolworths is set to open a Food branch in Camps Bay in the next three months is finally set to become a reality, having been promised over many years. On Monday I saw the first sign of some action.  (more…)

I received a media statement from GC Communications on behalf of the KWV, informing me that its oldest wine Roodeberg is celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. Whilst I do not normally write from media releases, this one touched me, evoking a childhood memory of growing up in Wellington.  (more…)

Last Friday my French housemate and I went to eat lunch at Osteria Tarantino, the tiniest Italian restaurant in Cape Town, seating no more than 32 pax inside and outside. We had both wanted to try it, based on word of mouth, but were disappointed with our experience, and found it to be exceptionally expensive. I question whether any of the dishes are freshly made for diners. (more…)

Talk of Cape Town is how quiet the Festive Season has been for the hospitality industry, affecting restaurants as well as accommodation establishments, as a result of the water shortage and load-shedding, it is speculated. One casualty of this is the shock news that The Restaurant at The Nek closed down at Constantia Nek six weeks after opening. 

Restaurant openings

#  Stargarden Boutique Café has opened in Fish Hoek. 

Restaurant Review: Stargarden Boutique Café in Fish Hoek is a star!

 

#   Gåte restaurant has opened at Quion Rock Winery, with Rikku O’Donaghue as the Executive Chef, who worked at two Michelin star restaurant Merchants Manor before moving to our country. He also worked at The Fat Duck and French Laundry. Head Chef is Warwick King, previously with Delaire Graff, The Stack, and The Ritz Revolving Restaurant. Other team members include Pastry Chef Izelle de Villiers, Nicole Loubser, Tyrone Truter, Josh Crewdson, and Rufus Scholtz. 

Gåte Restaurant at Quoin Rock takes SA restauranting to a new level, experiential and interactive dining and wining at its finest!

#. Michael Townsend, founder of the Harbour House Group but no longer with the Group, has opened Cowboys & Cooks Steakhouse & Bar in Sunset Beach. He has also bought Sevruga in the Waterfront. A third restaurant, in Sea Point will open in September 2019. All three restaurants are/will be operated by Cowboys & Cooks CEO Stuart Bailey.

New Cowboys and Cooks restaurant operations and consultancy group starting to cook up a storm!

#  The new Cowboys & Cooks restaurant group is to open a Cowboys and Cooks restaurant in Stellenbosch; The Backyard BBQ in various locations; Cabron Tex Mex restaurants in Durbanville and Stellenbosch, alongside the Bree Street Branch; and Viva Tex Mex in Kenilworth. It has taken over Slug & Lettuce, a Gastropub franchise with six branches, for which a new look and menu will be developed, starting off in Durbanville. 

#   Between Us has opened on Bree Street, as a restaurant and bar, belonging to the twin sisters who originally opened Skinny Legs & All. 

#  Chef Jenny Morris has opened Yumcious Durbanville.

#  The Skotnes Restaurant has opened at the Norval Foundation, with Executive Chef Phil de Villiers, previously of Primal Eatery. 

#  Paris Café has opened in Green Point.

#  The La Colombe Group has taken over the bar and restaurant at Le Quartier Français in Franschhoek, called Protégé. Stephen Raaff is the Head Chef.

#  Back’s Bar has opened on Main Road in Paarl, where Juno used to be. 

#   Chef Reuben Riffel has opened Reuben’s at The Capital Moloko in Johannesburg, his first Gauteng restaurant. 

#   A new breakfast and lunch Eatery is being developed at Val de Vie, in conjunction with Chef Reuben Riffel. 

#  Chef Jarryd has opened So Cal (for South California), a Bar above Charango on Bree Street. 

#  An upmarket celebrity bar, music, and event venue will open on the corner of Wale and Bree Street. 

#   Chef Bertus Basson has expanded his restaurant empire, opening Eike by bertusbasson as his sixth restaurant, and fifth in Stellenbosch. 

#  Bao Down Restaurant has opened in Oranjezicht. 

#   Upper Bloem has opened on Main Road in Green Point, where Maggie’s Café used to be, a joint venture between Chefs Henry Vigar and Andre Hill of La Mouette. 

#    TOSSD Salad Bar has opened on Sloane Square in Gardens, Cape Town. 

#   Chef George Jardine has opened Restaurant Seven with George Jardine in Somerset West.

#   Safari #7 Somali take-away restaurant has opened on Long Street. 

#  Chef David Higgs’ newest restaurant Saint ‘Pazzo Italiano’ has opened in Sandton. 

#   No 89 has opened on Bree Street.

#   Sans Ethical Green Grocer Deli has opened in the Artem Centre in Sea Point. 

#   Pauline’s Stand Up Coffee Bar has opened in the Artem Centre in Sea Point. 

#   Victoire Boulangerie, Pâtisserie, and Bistro has opened in Speakers Corner on Church Square, a joint venture between Chef William Galzin of Montpellier and Drikus Hancke of Cape Town, a former Melissa’s franchisee. 

#   Chefs Luke Dale-Roberts and Ryan Cole have opened Salsify @ The Roundhouse in Camps Bay.

Restaurant Review: Salsify at The Roundhouse brings Fine-Dining to Camps Bay, a crazy contrast of colonial and contemporary experiences!

#   Crayfish Wharf has opened in Paternoster.

#  Beleef has opened in the space in which Ryan’s Kitchen operated in Franschhoek. 

#  Grande Provence in Franschhoek has opened The Bistro as an extension to their Tasting Room.

#   Ellen Jay has opened as a coffee shop inside Constantia Fabrics. 

#   Garden’s Club has opened where Chalk & Cork used to operate on Kloof Street. 

#   The Santé Wellness Retreat & Spa restaurant has opened in Klapmuts, with Executive Chef Terrence Ford. 

#  Osetra has opened in Kalk Bay, with co-owner Oscar Kotze.

#   The Commissary has opened next door to The Shortmarket Club, with Chef Wesley Randles and Simon Widdison, under the mentorship of Chef Luke Dale-Roberts. It is a no-reservation, back to basics offering. 

#  Seattle Coffee Company has taken over the coffee shop at Exclusive Books in the V&A Waterfront. 

#  Chef Seelan Sundoo has opened Chicha in Sea Point. 

#   The Harbour House Group has bought Mondiall in the V&A Waterfront, and has turned it into a La Parada. 

#  Chef Peter Tempelhoff has opened FYN Restaurant and bar in Speaker’s Corner on Church Square. Jennifer Hugé is the new GM, and Ashley Moss is the Chef, moving across from the Greenhouse. 

FYN Restaurant legal settlement win-win for Chef Peter Tempelhoff and WhaleTales Blog!

#   Bobo’s Brasserie has opened in Mouille Point, where Pepenero used to be. 

#  Roca Café has opened where Melissa’s used to be in Franschhoek, open from midday to 21h00, and serving Tapas. 

#   Chef Chris Erasmus is said to be opening a restaurant at Haut Espoir, with Chef Nick Oosthuizen in the kitchen.

#  Riverine Rabbit has opened where ASH used to operate, by Chef Ash Heeger. 

#  Chef Ciska Rossouw has opened Loaves in Salt River, no longer operating Loaves on Long. 

#   BOCCA has re-opened on Bree Street, with new owners Guido Brambilla and Adnana Blaj

#   Haus & Laib Deli has opened in the former Eurohaus space on Loop Street. 

#  Chef Matt Manning has opened Grub & Vine Restaurant on Bree Street.

#   Bones Kitchen & Bar has opened at Palms Lifestyle Centre. 

#   Anni’s Gourmet  Pancakes & Belgian Waffles has opened in Franschhoek.

#   Vadas Smokehouse and Bakery has opened at Spier, taking the place of Hoghouse, which Chef PJ Vadas no longer appears to be associated with. 

#   Syrup Breakfast is opening on Bree Street.

#  The Creamery is to open a branch in Durbanville Village Square. 

#  Macau has opened in the former Savoy Cabbage space. 

#  Tiger’s Milk has opened in Camps Bay. 

#   The Hungry Monk has closed in Greyton and moved to Paternoster. In its place, a Portuguese/Mozambiquen restaurant will open in Greyton. 

#  Bush Café has opened as a safari-style restaurant in Gardens 

#  Charlie Bistro & Bar has opened in Gardens. 

Restaurant closures

#.  Dalliance restaurant and White Rabbit coffee shop, part of the Kove Collection, have closed their doors in the V&A Waterfront. 

#.  IYO Burgers has closed on Bree Street

#.  Iconic Kitima has closed down in Hout Bay, following a rumour of its demise circulating last year but denied at the time. 

#. Odyssey (with French Toast before it) has closed down on Bree Street

#. The Ritz is closed, and with it its Top of The Ritz and CASA restaurants. 

#  Shego has closed down at the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel. 

#  The Crazy Horse gastropub has closed down on Bree Street. 

#  Mitico has closed down on Kloof Street. Yours Truly has expanded into the space. 

#   So sad to hear that Chef Warrick Taylor of SOURCE restaurant in Hermanus has sold the restaurant and is leaving the country with his family. 

#   Cargills in Rondebosch has closed down. 

#   Savoy Cabbage in Heritage Square in the city centre has closed down, after 20 years. 

#  Eurohaus on Loop Street has closed down

#  Karoux has closed down in McGregor. 

#   Olami on Bree Street has closed down. 

#  BlackandCo has closed down in Constantia. 

#   Chalk & Cork has closed down. 

#   Bukhara has closed down in Stellenbosch. 

#  Loaves on Long has closed. 

#  ASH restaurant has closed. 

#  The Restaurant at The Nek, with Chef Duncan Laity, has closed, six weeks after opening. No ‘Manley Magic’ could make this restaurant work. 

Chef changes 

#. Chef Sidwell Yarrow has left La Petite Ferme, to return to the cruise ships. The restaurant on the wine estate is now headed up by Chef Kyle Norris.

#. Chef Gerard van Staden is the new chef at Pearl Valley. 

#  Chef Gary Welgemoed is the Head Chef at the Carrol Boyes Chocolate division. 

#   Lee-Andra Govender is the new Pastry Chef at The Table Bay Hotel. 

#   Chef Evan Coosner has left Open Door/Bocca/Burrata, and is now a consultant chef.

#   Chef Archie MacLean has left Catharina’s and moved to Coco Safar. He has since left Coco Safar, and is said to have joined Café Bon Bon in Franschhoek. 

#   Chef Guy Clark has left Tintswalo, now consulting. He is running a pop-up restaurant Baransu, with Nadia Minnaar.

#   Carmen Rueda is the new Pastry Chef of Coco Safar, formerly from El Bulli and The Fat Duck.

#   Chef Richard Carstens has left Tokara Restaurant, and is starting a restaurant consultancy with Chef Reuben Riffel, called Riffel Carstens.

#   Carolize Coetzee has been appointed as Executive Chef at Tokara, moving from Dornier wine estate.

#  Christian Hellinger is the new Chef at Holden Manz

#  Chef Sebastian Smith from Nom Nom/Benguela on Main has moved to Pierneef à La Motte. 

#  Chef Matthew Ambruster is the new Head Chef at Hartford House. Former Head Chef Chris Papyannis is to open his own restaurant in Mooi River, 

Restaurant changes

#. Culture Club Cheese has changed into Vredehoek Slow Food Club.

Please share news about restaurant openings and closures with me at chrisvonulmenstein@gmail.com

Chris von Ulmenstein, WhaleTales Blog: www.chrisvonulmenstein.com/blog Tel +27 082 55 11 323 Twitter:@Ulmenstein Facebook: Chris von Ulmenstein Instagram: @Chris_Ulmenstein

Last week Cape Town received the high honour of being named the ‘World’s Leading Festival and Events Destination’ at the World Travel Awards 2018, held in Lisbon. It follows Cape Town being named ‘Africa’s Leading Festival and Events Destination’ two months ago.   (more…)

« Previous PageNext Page »