Entries tagged with “Wakame”.


Chef's Warehouse Street Food logo Whale Cottage PortfolioCape Town is seeing an amazing number of restaurant openings in mid-winter, a time during which one expects the opposite, it being usual to see restaurant closures.  Although a concern to some, we are seeing a rise in restaurant entrepreneurs, opening more than one restaurant in Cape Town, including Neil Grant with business partner Barry Engelbrecht (opening on Bree Street, as well as at the former River Café; Michael Townsend of the Harbour House Group, who must be the fastest restaurant-opener at the moment, also bringing star Chef Andres Conde from Michelin star restaurants in Spain to Cape Town; and grumpy Giorgio Nava, who is opening two Carne restaurants shortly! This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen has opened Street Food below the neighbouring hotel, offering Deluxe coffee, pastries, and Asian-inspired lunch take-outs. Operates from 7h00 – 15h00.

*   Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.

*   Lucky Fish & Chips has opened on Bree Street, on Regent Road in Sea Point, on Long Street, in Kalk Bay, and in Muizenberg, belonging to Harbour House group.  

*   The Butcher Shop & Grill is opening next to Sotano in Mouille Point.

*   Ragafellows has opened on Main Road in Hout Bay.

*   The Dogfather has opened in Sea Point.

*   The Restaurant at Cape Point Vineyards has opened, with Chef Clayton Bell of the former Constantia Uitsig (more…)

Chef's Warehouse Street Food logo Whale Cottage PortfolioCape Town is seeing an amazing number of restaurant openings in mid-winter, a time during which one expects the opposite, it being usual to see restaurant closures.  Although a concern to some, we are seeing a rise in restaurant entrepreneurs, opening more than one restaurant in Cape Town, including Neil Grant with business partner Barry Engelbrecht (opening on Bree Street, as well as at the former River Café; Michael Townsend of the Harbour House Group, who must be the fastest restaurant-opener at the moment, also bringing star Chef Andres Conde from Michelin star restaurants in Spain to Cape Town; and grumpy Giorgio Nava, who is opening two Carne restaurants shortly!   This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen has opened Street Food below the neighbouring hotel, offering Deluxe coffee, pastries, and Asian-inspired lunch take-outs. Operates from 7h00 – 15h00.

*   Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.

*   Lucky Fish & Chips has opened on Bree Street, on Regent Road in Sea Point, on Long Street, in Kalk Bay, and in Muizenberg, belonging to Harbour House group.  

*   The Butcher Shop & Grill is opening next to Sotano in Mouille Point.

*   Ragafellows has opened on Main Road in Hout Bay.

*   The Dogfather has opened in Sea Point.

*   The Restaurant at Cape Point Vineyards has opened, with Chef Clayton Bell of the former Constantia Uitsig at (more…)

Chef's Warehouse Bree Street Whale Cottage Portfolio (2)Many restaurants opened this summer, but the industry is taking its first toll, with restaurants closing down.  It may be a tough winter ahead, given the poor state of the economy.  Yet Neil Grant and Barry Engelbrecht (Burrata), Clayton Howard and Mico Botha (I Love my Laundry), and Michael Townsend (La Parada, Lucky Fish, Harbour House) are expanding their portfolios.

This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Chef’s Warehouse & Cookery School has moved to Bree Street, in the Cape Heritage hotel building, where Awestruck/Caveau used to be, and is now called Chef’s Warehouse & Canteen, with Chef Liam Tomlin in the kitchen.  Street Food has also opened as a take-away outlet (7h00 – 15h00)

*   Diesel & Creme, a diner, restaurant, and coffee shop, has opened on the R62 in Barrydale.

*   Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.

*   The Tap Room has opened at Devils’ Peak Brewery

*   I  my Laundry has opened another (its third) branch on Buitenkant Street.

*   Jordan Wines has launched a Deli and Bakery.

*   Lucky Fish & Chips has opened on Bree Street, on Regent Road in Sea Point, on Long Street, in Kalk Bay, and in Muizenberg, belonging to Michael Townsend of the Harbour House group.

  Tümi has opened as a health food café in St John’s Piazza in Sea Point, being part of the Col’Cocchia group. (more…)

Umi Interior Pink blossoms Whale Cottage PortfolioMany restaurants are opening and have opened this summer, with only three months of the summer season left in which they can create awareness and make an impact before the dreaded winter arrives after the Easter weekend.  New restaurants are far more casual, with informal dining.

This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Umi Asian restaurant  opened in December with The Marly hotel in the Camps Bay Promenade, owned by The Cove (Kovensky) Group  (photograph above).

*   Equus restaurant on the Cavalli stud and wine farm on the R44 has opened. Carl Habel left the Mount Nelson Hotel as Restaurant Manager and Sommelier to join the restaurant, but left before it opened. Chef Henrico Grobbelaar from the Twelve Apostles heads up the kitchen.

*   Shake your Honey is to open in the original Madame Zingara building on Loop Street this year, according to an iolTravel report.  The ‘vibrant spirit of India’ is to be reflected in the 5-storey building, with a theatre, markets, restaurants, and shops.

*   A new restaurant and micro brewery is to open next door to The Bromwell in Woodstock (name not yet known).

*   TriBakery has opened on Bree Street.

*   Vida e Caffe is opening coffee shops at Shell petrol stations, 40 initially and 300in total.  It has also opened in Garden’s Centre, and in St John’s Piazza in Sea Point.

*   The Black Sheep Restaurant has opened on Kloof Street. (more…)

KOI Entrance Whale Cottage PortfolioThe opening of KOI Bantry Bay at The Ambassador Hotel has been eagerly awaited, after it was announced that Salt Restaurant would be replaced with a Gauteng-based group restaurant, KOI restaurants already operating in Sandton, Rosebank, and in Pretoria. The KOI restaurants are sister restaurants to the Wakame (with Wafu) restaurant group in Cape Town, which was founded 15 years ago, and is headed up by co-directors Stewart Bond and Rory Jossel.  There are no koi at KOI, and other than a logo on a business card, there is no representation of the decorative carp in the restaurant.  The website defines the KOI name as being Japanese for ‘Come, Love, Fish‘.

Always on the lookout for a good restaurant on the Atlantic Seaboard, a rarity, I was looking forward to seeing how the restaurant group would give the hotel restaurant space new life. Despite having the most magnificent location, ideal to see sunsets as it faces west over the Atlantic Ocean, the restaurants at The Ambassador just do not seem to have staying power, and neither do their chefs and staff for that matter!   Some decor changes have been made, wooden grids guiding one to the end of the passage, with only one entrance now, the previous entrance to the lounge KOI Interior Whale Cottage Portfolioand bar area having been closed. The lounge area now is restaurant seating too, with space for a total of about 100 patrons the Manager Chris Somhohlo said. Wood dominates the decor style (Chris couldn’t remember the name of the decorator), with wooden table tops, wooden chairs with woven seats, and the woven grid theme picked up in the visual display covering an entire wall, in the new ceiling lighting, and in the lampshades too.  The (more…)

Beerhouse Bottled Beers Whale Cottage PortfolioDespite one of  the worst winters ever experienced by the Cape hospitality industry, few restaurants have closed down recently.   A surprise however is the movement of staff between restaurants. This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Beerhouse has opened on Long Street, with 16 beers on tap and 99 bottled beers from around the world.

*    The House of Machines has opened on Shortmarket Street, building motorcycles, offering good Evil Twin coffee, and serving very healthy food.

*   Pure Good has opened downstairs in the Associated Magazines building opposite Parliament, and is owned by Shannon Smuts, the first MasterChef SA Finalist to have been eliminated.

*   The Harbour House group has opened La Parada Spanish Tapas restaurant on (more…)

Four & 20 Cafe via The Pretty BlogNo significant events have been planned to attract visitors to Cape Town and the Winelands this winter, and it appears to be the worst winter ever experienced by the hospitality industry in the Cape.  A surprise is the number of restaurant changes, as well as the the movement of staff  between restaurants.   Given the poor winter business, many restaurants have taken/are taking generous winter breaks. This list of restaurant openings and closings is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Four & Twenty Café and Pantry has opened in Wynberg

*   The Crypt Jazz Restaurant has opened below St George’s Cathedral.

*   Orphanage Cocktail Emporium is opening Orphanage Club upstairs, with 1920’s style music by live performers, later this year.

*   Cavalli restaurant on the stud farm on the R44 must be opening shortly, as Carl Habel has left the Mount Nelson Hotel as Restaurant Manager and Sommelier to join the restaurant.

*   Shake your Honey is to open in the original Madame Zingara building on Loop Street next year, after renovations commence later this year, according to an iolTravel report.  The ‘vibrant spirit of India’ is to be reflected in the 5-storey building, with a theatre, markets, restaurants, and shops.

*   Burger King has opened its (second) Tygervalley branch. Branches at Cavendish and at Grandwest are to open soon. (more…)

The first taste of the Cape winter this weekend is likely to be felt by the restaurant industry, which will see hard times in the next two months, if close to zero accommodation bookings in the Cape are anything to go by.  Other than Hermanus FynArts and the Wacky Wine Weekend kicking off next week, ‘Cook Franschhoek‘ running over the Youth Day long weekend, and the Bastille Festival weekend on 13 – 14 July, no significant events are planned to attract visitors to Cape Town and the Winelands.  A number of restaurants are closing for an annual break in the next two months.

This list of restaurant openings and closings isupdated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*   The Crypt Jazz Restaurant has opened below St George’s Cathedral.

*   Frères Bistro has opened next door to Col’Cacchio on Hans Strydom (more…)

A fantastic last half of April weather-wise has been a ‘second wind’ for Cape Town’s restaurants, delaying the closure of restaurants which will be inevitable in the long winter lying ahead.  Already April has seen six restaurant closures.  This list of restaurant openings and closings is  updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*   Frères Bistro has opened next door to Col’Cacchio on Hans Strydom Avenue in the city centre.

*   Orphanage Cocktail Emporium is opening Orphanage Club upstairs, with 1920’s style music by live performers, later this year.

*   Cavalli restaurant is said to open on the stud farm on R44, between Stellenbosch (more…)

The Cape Town restaurant scene has been buzzing this month, with a number of new restaurants opening, and an e-mail exchange creating the biggest restaurant stir ever experienced in the city.

The opening of the Cape Quarter extension on Somerset Road in De Waterkant has seen two restaurants open in the centre to date: Cru Cafe, a restaurant which has created “its own terroir” in the centre, says director Elsie Pells, in serving a selection of 150 wines hand-picked by Pells, a Cape Wine Master.   Voila, an all day breakfast and light meal restaurant, owned by the owners of Wakame, is a friendly addition, with cakes, muffins, croissants, fudge, toffee apples and many more treats prepared on site.   A clever touch is that glass domes presenting the treats are placed upon stacks of cookery books!  Downstairs, at the entrance, is an Andiamo Espresso, which is a sister coffee shop to the one in the original Cape Quarter, but on a very much reduced scale, only selling coffee, ice creams, juices, sandwiches and muffins.  It belongs to the same owners as the amazing Spar Gourmet Food Store at the entrance to the center.   Vanilla will open at the end of the month, and is owned by father and son duo Nigel and Simon Newhouse from Tuscany Beach in Camps Bay.   It will be the lead restaurant in this centre, with 180 diners catered for on two levels.   The chef  Evan Coosner worked at Reuben’s  and Ginja previously.   Kuzina – Greekooking, LAZARI, and BICCCS (Bread, Ice Cream, Cakes, Coffee, Croissants, Sandwiches) are restaurants still set to open in the centre.    To celebrate its opening, the Cape Quarter has organised a Food & Brandy Festival on 13 and 14 November, with Giggling Gourmet Jenny Morris, in conjunction with the Alchemy of Gold (Klipdrift, Flight of the Fish Eagle, Oude Meester, Nederburg, Uitkyk and Van Ryn’s brandies), talking and preparing food all day long.

The talk and tweet of the town has been an e-mail exchange between Cormac Keane, owner of new restaurant Portofino, and a client, who cancelled a 5 pm dinner reservation one hour before time of arrival.  Keane expressed his frustration to the client in no uncertain terms and with true Irish directness.  The client was not happy with the replies he received from Portofino, and made contact with some websites that had written favourable reviews of the restaurant, including WhaleTales.    He also sent it to a hip website called 2oceansvibe, which decided to post the e-mail exchange on its blog, leading to an outburst of mainly critical and at times extremely crass and defamatory attacks against Keane.  On the other hand, many readers of the exchange admired Keane for standing up to an inconsiderate customer, and lauded him for his bold and direct stand. The end result:  the customer has gone into hiding, and has requested that his name be deleted from the exchange on the 2oceansvibe website.  For Portofino, it has meant a fully booked restaurant ever since the e-mail exchange was circulated around the city, reinforcing that there is no such thing as bad publicity!   The WhaleTales’ review of Portofino, which was written shortly after Portofino opened, was offered as a link in some of the website comments, and the review attracted more than 2000 readers in the past week, a record readership.   A vindictive customer tried to show up what he felt was a rude restaurateur, and got more than he bargained for.  Instead of spreading the word to prevent others from going to Portofino, he has done the restaurant the best possible favour by creating wide-spread exposure for it, a bonus for a restaurant which only opened 6 weeks ago, and now has become the best known restaurant in town!   Portofino is not the first restaurant to have told a customer to not return: Le Quartier Francais, Carne, Beluga and Sevruga are known to have done so too!    Carne and Le Quartier Francais are finalists for the Prudential Eat Out Top 10 restaurant awards, and it begs the question whether such poor restaurant customer care should make them eligible for such a sought-after award.  

Another restaurant that is on the Eat Out Top 10 restaurant shortlist is The Roundhouse in Camps Bay, which has demonstrated its arrogance almost since its inception, stating at the outset that its goal is to become the best restaurant in Africa.  A response of the owner Fasie Malherbe to a customer comment on the Eat Out website is a scary reflection of what one might encounter at this ‘Big Brother’ restaurant: “every guest that has ever walked through our door and dined with us is on record to the extent that I will outline your exact time of arrival, what you ate, what you drank as aperitif’s, digestif’s wine that was served to you, the guests comments made on each dish, positive or negative feedback, special dietry (sic) requirements, the guest interaction between staff is noted, what car you drove, whether you smoked or not, how many times you went to the restroom and any other details that we could use to ensure that when you return that we may ensure consistency in offering or if you have complaints as we have here that we have all our ducks in a row and can learn from the ordeal”!

Bruce Robertson, the previous owner of The Showroom, which is where Portofino is now located, has confirmed that the Franschhoek restaurant that he is consulting on is that of La Motte, which is due to open in May.   The wine estate has just opened its new tasting room.   Robertson is also working with Warwick wine estate outside Stellenbosch on their gourmet picnic offering, which will be available from 1 December.  Robertson is also a gourmet food tour guide now, and he led the editor and 8 readers of USA foodie magazine Bon Appetit around the culinary delights of the Cape, including Reuben preparing a meal at Boekenhoutskloof in Franschhoek; a winepairing dinner at Grand Roche with Cederberg Wines; a malas tasting at Paul Cluver matched to organic farm foods; a seafood braai paired with Hamilton-Russell wines at Birkenhead in Hermanus, with the Southern Right whales frolicking in the ocean as a backdrop; and an interactive Cape Malay cooking demonstration with Cass Abrahams and paired with L’Omarins wines. 

OYO, the restaurant in the V&A Hotel in the Waterfront, is offering a crayfish special at R 185 for 500 grams.  A choice of hot or cold crayfish is offered.  Sister restaurant SALT at the Ambassador Hotel in Bantry Bay is also offering this special.

Alle’e Bleue wine estate has opened its beautiful top class winetasting room, and has a new outside courtyard restaurant seating about 80 linked to it, serving only five options:   Flammkuchen, Bobotie, a cheese platter, a chicken/spinach salad and a mixed grill.

Delaire Graff has made three changes after only being open for four months:  its prices have increased, its staff have changed, losing their exceptional Maitre’d, and their menu has changed.   Read a report on the latest visit here.

New Italian restaurant Alla Posta is to open at 51 Kloof Street shortly.  It will not only offer Italian delicacies, but also Italian furniture, decor and books, and show Italian movies.

Two new restaurants are set to open in Franschhoek soon, both owned by one of Franschhoek’s largest retail and hospitality landowners Robert Maingard.   In the old station building once hosting the Tourism Bureau, a sports bar is set to open, while a creperie should have opened a few months ago already close to the Huguenot Fine Chocolate shop.   A Franschhoek branch of Gelato Mania, which already exists on Somerset Road, in Green Point, opened recently and is tucked away alongside Col’Cacchio.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio www.whalecottage.com