* De Grendel wine estate has opened De Grendel Restaurant, with Chef Ian Bergh and owner Jonathan Davies (photograph left)
* Luke Dale-Roberts, Eat Out Top Chef, is to open a real test kitchen, called The Kitchen of Dreams, a private experimental place to develop new recipes, at the Old Biscuit Mill
* Col’Cacchio has opened a new outlets in Westlake, and a new one is coming in Claremont too.
* A new Vida é Caffe has opened on Prestwich Street, and a new branch is to open on Maindean Place in Claremont, and one in the new Wembley Square 2 development in July. Two more branches are planned for Mauritius, it is said.
* Madame’s on Napier has opened in De Waterkant
* Hussar Grill is to open at Steenberg
* Richard’s Supper Stage & Bistro has opened on Main/Glengariff Roads in Sea Point, as a dinner theatre, and Bistro restaurant, owned by Richard Loring and Roland Seidel
* Honest Chocolate is opening a second outlet with a ‘production kitchen’ in the Woodstock Industrial Centre
* The Fez has reopened as a nightclub on Friday, to be called Sideshow
* West Street Café has opened in the new Woodstock Foundry, owned by Chef Alan West
* Moyo is to open where the Paulaner Braühaus was in the V & A Waterfront in summer. It has taken over the tearoom at Kirstenbosch too.
* Josephine’s Cookhouse has opened in Newlands, belonging to the Societi Bistro owners
* Vovo Telo has opened in the V&A Waterfront, in half of the original Vaughn Johnson shop. They have branches in Port Elizabeth, Pretoria, and Johannesburg already. The name is Portuguese, and means ‘Grandfather’s place’.
* Orinoco has opened on Bree Street, serving Mexican and Venezuelan food
* Keenwa has opened the P.I.S.C.O Bar above its restaurants, open Thursdays – Saturdays from 5 pm
* Characters has opened on Roeland Street
* TRUTH Coffee has opened on Buitenkant Street
* Planet Green Salad Bar has opened on Kloof Street
* Liam Tomlin Food Studio and Store at Leopard’s Leap in Franschhoek is opening a Deli in September
* FEAST is to open where Franschhoek Food Emporium was, in Place Vendome
* Deluxe Coffeeworks has opened where Reuben’s Deli used to be in Franschhoek.
* Okamai Japanese restaurant has opened at Glenwood wine estate in Franschhoek
* Cavalli restaurant is said to open on the stud farm on R44, between Stellenbosch and Somerset West, this year or next
* Dorpstraat Deli has opened in Stellenbosch, where Cupcake used to be.
* De Oude Bank Bakkerij has opened a bar, serving Bartinney wines, and craft beers.
* Slug & Lettuce is to open where Beads was on Church Street in Stellenbosch
* Stables at Vergelegen Bistro has opened as a lunch restaurant in Somerset West. Its Lady Phillips Restaurant is being given a make-over by Christo Barnard, and will open in June with a new name called The Vergelegen Restaurant.
* Chef Jonathan Heath has left Indochine, and will be opening a restaurant at Coopmanshuijs on Dorp Street in August.
* Chef Johan van Schalkwyk has left the Stone Kitchen at Dunstone Winery, and has opened his own restaurant Twist Some More in Wellington.
* Chef Bjorn Dingemans is to open up The Millhouse Kitchen restaurant on Lourensford wine estate in Somerset West in July.
* Grilleri (ex-Mediterrea) has closed down, and Chef Shane (ex-La Vierge) is now heading the re-named La Pentola restaurant.
* Cassis Paris Salon de thé has opened in the Gardens’ Centre, on the first level.
* Melissa’s has opened at Somerset Mall in Somerset West
* Ali Baba Kebab (renamed from Laila) has opened as a small beef and lamb kebab take-away and sit-down outlet, next door to Codfather in Camps Bay
* Gibson’s Gourmet Burger and Smoked Ribs has opened as a 70-seater restaurant in the V&A Waterfront, taking part of the Belthazar space. Owned by the Belthazar/Balducci group.
* Giorgio Nava is said to be re-opening his Down South Food Bar, previously on Long Street, in the Riverside Centre in Rondebosch
* Tamboers Winkel has opened on De Lorentz Street, just off Kloof Street, Gardens/Tamboerskloof * Ou Meul Bakery from Riviersonderend is said to be opening a bakery in Long Street
* Deluxe Coffeeworks is opening a roastery to service all its outlets, at the previous German Club and Roodehek Restaurant.
* The Deli on the Square is to open at Frater Square in Paarl in July.
* David Higgs (ex Rust en Vrede) is opening a new 30 seater restaurant in The Saxon in Johannesburg.
* Big Route Top Gourmet Pizzeria has opened on Main Road, Green Point, next door to Woolworths, serving 52 different pizzas, salads and crêpes.
* Valora on Loop Street has closed down
* Vanilla in the Cape Quarter has closed down.
* Toro Wine and Aperitif Bar in De Waterkant has closed down
* Gesellig on Regent Road in Sea Point is standing empty, closed down or undergoing a major renovation
* Sapphire has closed down in Camps Bay
* Caveau at Josephine’s Mill has closed
down and the Bree Street venue is up for rent
* High Level Restaurant in Bo-Kaap has closed down
* Caveau on Bree Street and Gourmet Burger on Shortmarket Street, belonging to the same owners, have been closed down by their bank.
* Sabarosa in Bakoven has closed down.
Restaurant staff/venue changes
* Il Cappero has moved from Barrack Street to Fairway Street in Camps Bay.
* Table Thirteen has reduced in size in Green Point and will open in Paarden Eiland later this year. * Chef Fred Faucheux is the new Executive Chef at Nobu.
* Piroschka’s Kitchen has moved from Bree Street to Waterkant Street, De Waterkant
* MasterChef SA finalist Guy Clark, who was eliminated in episode 9, has started as a chef at the Madame Zingara restaurant group, at Café Mozart and the Bombay Bicycle Club.
* Rotisserie 360° on Bree Street has changed its name to Café Frank
* Salt Deli has changed its name to Salt Café
* The V&A Waterfront Food Court is closed for renovations until November. A sign outside the construction area lists the following businesses moving into or returning to the area: Primi Express, Anat, Carnival, Nür Halaal, Royal Bavarian Bakery, KFC, Boost Juice, Simply Asia, Steers, Debonairs, Subway, Marcel’s, and Haagan Dazs. Nando’s is also opening.
* Chef Darren Badenhorst is the new Executive Chef at Grande Provence. Chef Darren Roberts has left for a new appointment in the Seychelles.
* Alton van Biljon has been appointed as Restaurant Manager at Haute Cabriere.
* Ryan’s Kitchen is now offering cooking classes on Friday mornings, starting on 1 June
* Chef Shaun Schoeman of Fyndraai Restaurant at Solms Delta has the amazing honour to be working at Noma in Copenhagen for two weeks in July. He also shared that Fyndraai will move to another building on the wine estate in November, and will offer fine dining. The current restaurant will serve light lunches and picnics.
* Taste South Africa, belonging to Cybercellar, has closed down in The Yard off the main road. They have Tweeted that they are looking for new premises.
* Reuben’s, which was said to be moving its Franschhoek branch, appears to be staying at his existing venue, despite having bought another restaurant venue off the main road close to Place Vendome. He is also thought to open a restaurant in his home on Akademie Street.
* Emile Fortuin has been appointed as Executive Chef at Reuben’s Robertson
* Sommelier Josephine Gutentoft has left Grande Roche, and starts at Makaron at Majeka House in July, F&B Manager Chretien Ploum having left
* The Reserve will change its name to Reserve Brasserie next month. Seelan Sundoo, ex Grand Café Camps Bay and ex La Perla, is the new chef.
* Haiku does not enforce the minimum 4 star order requirement in winter.
* Café Dijon is closing its restaurant on Plein Street in Stellenbosch later in June, and re-opening in the Rockwell Centre in Green Point, Cape Town, where Camil Haas once had his Bouillabaisse restaurant.
* Chef Andrew Mendes from closed down Valora is now at Nelson’s Eye restaurant, where they are setting up a lunch section and cocktail bar upstairs.
* Miss K Food closed down in Green Point, now ex-owner Kerstin going on a well-deserved break after 5 years. The new owner Maurizio Porro, with his chef Ernesto, has kept the staff and furniture of Miss K, and most of her menu initially. By September they will have transformed themselves into an Italian fine-dining restaurant to be called Guilia’s Food Café Restaurant, and will be open from 8h00, as well as for dinner.
* Rob and Nicky Hahn have left Proviant in Paarl, and now run eat @ Simonsvlei on the Old Paarl Road
* Karl Lambour is the new General Manager of Grande Provence.
* Virgil Kahn is the new head chef at Indochine at Delaire Graff
* La Motte is said to be working on a relaunch of a restaurant it owns in Somerset West.
* Having bought the farm about 18 months ago, Antonij Rupert Wines has taken over the Graham Beck Franschhoek property. They will re-open the tasting room in October, initially offering all its Antonij Rupert, Cape of Good Hope, Terra del Capo, and Protea wines to taste. They are renovating the manor house, to which the Antonij Rupert and Cape of Good Hope wines will be moved for tasting at a later stage.
* Chef Marco, who opened Rocca at Dieu Donné in Franschhoek, has returned to Durban.
* Orphanage is expanding into a property at its back, opening on Orphan Street, in December, creating a similar second bar downstairs, and opening Orphanage Club upstairs, with 1920’s style music by live performers
* La Colombe is closing for renovations from 17 May – 16 June.
* Constantia Uitsig is taking a winter break from 25 June – 24 July.
* The River Café is closing for a winter break from 13 August – 4 September.
* Nguni in Plettenberg Bay closes from 1 May – 31 July
* Bientang’s Cave in Hermanus is closed for renovations until 21 June.
* The Kove in Camps Bay will be closed from 1 May – 30 August
* Burgundy in Hermanus will be closed for dinners until 17 June
* Makaron Restaurant at Majeka House will be closed until 2 July
* Olivello at Marianne Estate will be closed from 30 July – 21 August
* Grande Provence is closing on Sunday evenings until the end of September.
* Pierneef a La Motte will be closed from 18 June – 13 July.
* The main Delaire Graff restaurant closes from 3 June – 6 July, but Indochine continues to trade.
* Blues will be closed from 1 – 30 June
* Waterkloof in Somerset West is closing for all June.
* The Franschhoek Kitchen at Holden Manz is closed for all of June
* Pure Restaurant at Hout Bay Manor will be closed from 23 June – 3 August
* L’Apero at the Grand Daddy Hotel is closed for repairs until 17 June
* Charly’s Bakery closes between 23 June and 16 July.
* Kitima is re-opening from its winter break on 17 July
* Terroir, Kleine Zalze: Closed from 25 June – 9 July. Open for dinner only 10 – 13 July. Open for lunch and dinner 14 July. Open for lunch 15 July.
* Pane e Vino is closing from 1 – 31 July
* Bistro 1682 at Steenberg is closed from 1 – 26 July.
* The Kitchen at Maison is closed until 3 August
* De Oude Bank Bakkerij will be closed from 8 – 16 July
* Massimo’s Pizza Club is closing from 23 – 31 July
* Rust en Vrede is closed from 8 July – 6 August
* Tokara is closed between 9 – 16 July
* Reuben’s Franschhoek is closed from 16 July – 1 August
Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage