Cape Town and Winelands restaurant and chef changes continue!


Borage Bistro Interior 2 Whale CottageAn unusually high number of new restaurants has opened or will do so in the next month or two.  There have never been so many chefs leaving their employers to start their own restaurants, or to join other employers!  This list of restaurant openings and closings and restaurant staff movements is updated continuously, as we receive new information:

Restaurant Openings

*    Borage Bistro has opened in Portside, with Chef Frank Marks, previously of The Fat Duck, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, La Colombe, The Test Kitchen, and The Pot Luck Club

*   Chef Chris Erasmus has opened his own restaurant Foliage in Franschhoek, having previously been at Pierneef à La Motte.

*   Idiom Wines is said to be opening a restaurant.

*   The Butcher Shop & Grill has opened next to Sotano in Mouille Point.

*   Michael Townsend (La Parada, Lucky Fish, Harbour House emporium) is opening a steak restaurant in Muizenberg in November.

*   Neil Grant and his business partner Barry Engelbrecht (of Burrata) are opening a new restaurant Bocca on the corner of Bree and Wale Streets in September, ‘more low key, more Bree Street, more user-friendly‘, with an Italian pizza oven too.  They are also taking over the River Café (renaming it) at Constantia Uitsig.

*   Hard Rock Café has returned to South Africa, and has opened the first of four branches on Mandela Square in Johannesburg.  Branches in Cape Town, Pretoria, and Durban are planned.

*   NV-80 has opened in the Checkers building in Sea Point.

*   Baked in the Wood is to open in Woodstock in 2015, offering craft beer and tapas, and is owned by Zahir Mohamed of Baked Bistro.

*   Franky’s Diner has opened on Main Road, Sea Point.

*   Beijing Opera has opened on Rose Street.

*   The Lunch Depot has opened.

*   Hard Pressed Café has opened at the bottom of Bree Street.

*   Charcoal Dining has opened where Chef’s Warehouse was previously.

*   Isola has opened on Wale Street (but seems closed most days lately).

*   Thornton Whites Gastro Bar has opened

*   DeKapo has opened as a Halaal restaurant in Mouille Point

*   Plan B Bar and Café has opened

*   Flames and View have opened in the Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff in Johannesburg, with Chef Dirk Gieselmann, previously of 3 Michelin star Auberge de I’ll  in France.

*   Yo Meatball has opened on Roeland Street

*   Lucky Fish has opened in Wynberg.

*   Chef Craig Cormack has opened a Pop-Up Pizza & Pasta Restaurant next to the Allée Bleue’s winetasting centre, open until end September.

*   CreATE Inspirational Café has opened in Stellenbosch.

*   Honest Chocolate Café will open next to Honest Chocolate on Wale Street.

*   Brandon of the Caveau Crew is opening The Lady Ava in Mouille Point!

*   Crisp, ‘purveyors of fine produce’, has opened as a deli and coffee shop in Franschhoek.

*   Kokkedoor judge and Chef Nic van Wyk and Roxy Laker have opened bistro 13 at Stellenbosch Vineyards (Welmoed).

*   Izakaya Matsuri has opened in The Rockwell in Green Point, belonging to the same owner as Genki in Stellenbosch

*   Piazza Italia has opened on Park Road in Gardens.

*   Shift has opened as a coffee shop in Cape Royale Luxury Hotel

*   Pasta Cafe has opened in the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel

*   Tasha’s is opening in Canal Walk

*   Localé Cocktail & Pincho Bar has opened in Mowbray, as a joint venture between Baked Bistro and Starlings Café

*  Lime Tree Café has opened in Bergvliet

*   Olio Pizza has opened in Bergvliet

*   The Whale Garden has opened as an outdoor coffee bar in Hermanus.

*   A truly Italian restaurant Palma is to open on Bree Street

*   Molten Toffee Juice Bar & Coffee Shop has opened on Kloof Street.

*   Chef Thomas Sinn has opened Rivendell Restaurant on the road to Hermanus.

Restaurant Closures

*   Jewel of India on Rose Street has closed down.

*   Casparaus has closed down in Stellenbosch

*   Lanique Bistro & Bar has closed down.

Restaurant chef/staff/venue changes

*   Morgenster is planning a new restaurant with an (very big name) international partner, a Café, a Deli, and accommodation, a project which is still in development phase, but is planned to roll out in summer.

*   Fyndraai has moved into a new restaurant building on Solms-Delta, making space for the current restaurant venue to become the tasting room.  The restaurant building was previously a stable, and is next to the new Music van de Caab building.

*   Haas has moved to Buitenkant Street.

*   Chef Bruce Robertson has moved from Scarborough to Simon’s Town, opening The Flagship guest house and a 16 seater restaurant – sadly Chef Bruce passed away suddenly on 3 November.

*   The Gallery Restaurant at South Hills has opened in Elgin.

*   Fisherman’s Catch in Franchhoek has closed, after re-opening twice this year.  It had a new sign West Coast Farm Stall and Coffee Shoppe, but that has also been taken down.  Its new signage is The White House, and a coffee shop/restaurant inside, called Aptyt!  It also sells Addictions (ice cream shop brand in Cape Town)!

*   Craft Bakery, and Craft Wheat & Hops has opened where Apprentice used to be in Andringa Street in Stellenbosch.

*   Chef Andres Condé, formerly from elBulli and Tickets Michelin-star restaurants, has joined the Harbour House Group.  He will eventually open a fine dining restaurant in the Constantia Nek restaurant building

*   The Company’s Garden Restaurant will be taken over by the Zingara Group, and renamed Haarlem & Hope.  It will open in Spring.

*   Chef Carl Penn of Pedlars on the Bend has opened Alcantra in the former Don Pedro in Woodstock.

*   Carne Bistro has opened on Kloof Street, where Caffe Milano was, and another Carne is opening in Wynberg.

*   Mange Tout at Mont Rochelle in Franschhoek has re-opened and renamed Miko.

*   Chef Jackie Cameron has left Hartford House, and opens the Jackie Cameron School of Food and Wine in Hilton in January.

*   Luvey ‘n Rose has reopened on Loop Street.

*   Chef Gerald van der Walt of The Greenhouse at Cellars-Hohenhort has joined The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français as Head Chef.

*   La Colombe has moved out of Constantia Uitsig, to re-open at Silvermist in Hout Bay in October.

*   Chef PJ Vadas has left Camphors at Vergelegen, to open his own  restaurant and brewery The Hog House in Cape Town.  The brewery will operate from Ndabeni, near Merrypak.

*   Rocca in the Cape Quarter has been sold, and has changed its name to Celtic Cove.

*   La Parada is opening in part of the former Constantia Nek restaurant building

*   Umi restaurant in Camps Bay has been halved in size, and La Belle Café has opened in the other half.  It is a sister restaurant to the one based in The Alphen, also being part of the Kovensky Group.

*   &Union has changed ownership, having been bought by Jason Lilley of Jason’s, and its name to WeinHaus & Biergarten.

*   Jamie’s Italian is opening in the V&A Waterfront, when the Sevruga lease expires, Chef Jamie Oliver already having restaurants in Canada, Australia, Dubai, Ireland, Hong Kong, Russia, Singapore, and Turkey.

*   The Daily Deli in Tamboerskloof has changed owners, and has opened as The Blue Café.

*   1800° Bistro at the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel has re-opened as The Banting Kitchen.

*   Burgundy in Hermanus has been sold to Willem and Estie Steyn, who in turn have sold Savannah.  They also own @Food and Wine in Hermanus.

*   Ryan’s Kitchen has left its location within Rusthof due to renovations to the building.  It will re-open in November, at the former Pistachio Bistro (now closed down) in Place Vendome in Franschhoek.

*   65 on Main has changed its name to 65 on Main Lifestyle Food & Banting Café

*   Khuselo Mputa has left Aubergine, and now is at Grande Provence as Sommelier and Restaurant Manager.

*   Xolani Mancotywa joined La Residence as Sommelier and Beverage Manager, but has already left again.

*   Llewellyn Lambert has joined The Franschhoek Kitchen at Holden Manz as Restaurant Manager.

*   Chef Michael Cooke from La Colombe has joined Camphors at Vergelegen as Executive Chef, taking over from PJ Vadas.

*   Chef Gary Richardson has left Stables at Vergelegen, opening his own restaurant in Harfield Village in November.

*   Restaurant Manager Jason van Heerden has left Stables at Vergelegen, returning to Brisbane.  Marvin Seekoei is the new Manager.

*   Chef Stefan Danz of Babylonstoren has joined Stables at Vergelegen as Executive Chef

*   The management of Tokara has taken over the management of Tokara DeliCATessen.

*   Aroma Café has opened on Loop Street.

  Maison has opened a Deli offering Tapas dishes to pair with its winetasting in October.

*   Ashley Moss is the new Head Chef at The Greenhouse.

*   The Salmon Bar in Franschhoek has been sold again, to a very friendly David MacGinty.

*   Chef Christiaan Campbell of Delaire Graff has moved to Boschendal.   His replacement is Michael Dig, a chef who worked with Chef Christiaan.

*   Chef Brad Ball of Bistro Sixteen82 has left, and is moving to Pedlars on the Bend.  Willow Stober is heading up the kitchen currently, until Kelly Kilpin starts in November.

*   Belsol Portuguese restaurant has opened in Camps Bay, where Luigi’s used to be (but still has all the Luigi branding outside the restaurant)

*   Truffle has opened where Leaf, Portofino, and The Showroom used to be, and changed chefs within 10 days of opening, Chef Nick Blazic having left, and Chef Ryan Brown having taken over!

*   The Executive Club at the Westin Cape Town has changed its name to On 19.  Chris Maree is the new chef, previously at the Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa.

*   Chef Oliver Cattermole has left Mondiall and joined the Leeu Collection. Chef Lauren Case is now running the Mondiall kitchen. Mondiall Sous Chef Jodey Carlous has also left, joining the Zingara Group.

*   Chef Marile van Niekerk has left Craft Wheat & Hops to join LUST Bakery & Bistro at Vrede en Lust as Head Chef.

*    Amy and Marc Botes have taken over Mozzarella Bar from Giorgio Nava on Kloof Street, and renamed it Chalk & Cork (aka as Chalk & Cheek!)

*   Chef Kerry Kilpin has been appointed as Head Chef and Restaurant Manager of Bistro Sixteen82, from 3 November onward.  She was previously at La Colombe and The Food Barn.

*   Chris Papayannes, previous Restaurant Manager and Sommelier at The Restaurant at Newton Johnson, has been appointed as Executive Sous Chef at Zevenwacht.

*   Chef Charl Coetzee has joined Eight at Spier.

*   Taste restaurant is moving to Bright Street in Somerset West, re-opening in November.

*   Chef Germaine Esau has moved from Delaire Graff to Makaron at Majeka House.

*   Charcutier Steve Jeffery is running of Blaauwklippen Bistro.

Temporary restaurant closures

*   Boschendal has closed, for an extensive renovation as a wedding destination,  over winter. A new restaurant operator is expected to be appointed for the summer.

*   La Colombe: closed until October

*   Tokara DeliCATessen will be closed for renovations in September.

*    Ryan’s Kitchen is currently closed, and re-opening in the former Pistachio Bistro in Place Vendome in Franschhoek in November.

We welcome all restaurant news – please e-mail us at

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio:  Tel (021) 433-2100  Twitter:@WhaleCottage Facebook:  click here

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2 replies on “Cape Town and Winelands restaurant and chef changes continue!”

    • Thank you Egbert.

      I have double checked, and they have re-opened, after an undefined lengthy winter break. I have removed them from the list.

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