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Grande Roche Hotel, Relais & Chateaux
Paarl, Winelands, Western Cape
Tel: 27 21 863 5100
The breaded wrapped springbok loin, served with sautéed asparagus and cherry-crusted foie-gras sauce, draws rave reviews at this superb restaurant, one of two restaurants in South Africa to receive Relais Gourmand status. The honor is well deserved. Executive chef Frank Zlomke crafts three menus—the Flavors of the Cape, the Vegetarian and the Epicurean—and a daily changing à la carte menu. Eight- and 12-course tasting menus are also available. As if the varied food choices weren't bewildering enough, there's a 68-page wine list, though the well-trained sommeliers are happy to assist you with your selection. Though you'll want to dress smartly, jacket and tie are not required. The restaurant is closed from mid-May through July.
121 Castle St.
Tel: 27 21 426 2368
Chef Mike Bassett delights diners at his global-fusion restaurant—on a short alley in the hip Bo-Kaap district—with dishes such as the Indian apple char sui lamb rack with pomegranate juice and the springbok Wellington with caramelized red braised cabbage and asparagus spears. The high ceilings, heavy wooden doors, dim lighting and copper pipes at Ginja (the name comes from Japanese word for root ginger) lend it an industrial feel, but the rich red walls and black-and-white floor make for an intimate French-brasserie look. After dining, head upstairs to relax at Shoga, a bistro-bar run by the owners of Ginja.
Mont Rochelle Hotel & Mountain Vineyards
Tel: 27 21 876 2770
It's easy to get distracted by the stunning views of vineyards and the Dassenberg Mountains from the terrace and mildly postmodern, Provençal-esque dining room of this stylish restaurant. Executive chef Ryan Smith's pan-European menu includes rich dishes such as slivers of foie gras and French chèvre with a beetroot drizzle. Forget about your waistline and devour the wide selection of freshly baked breads. A pianist from Turin, Italy, plays nightly. During the day, sneak away to one of the property's picnic areas and feast on a gourmet basket prepared at the Country Kitchen, a more casual facility located in the wine-tasting center.
151 Kloof St.
Tel: 27 21 426 2413
The aroma of freshly baked breads wafts into the street from this casual spot that's open only for breakfast and lunch. Breakfast is a real treat, especially the toasted homemade coconut bread with scrambled eggs (the fluffiest ever!), avocado and smoked salmon trout. Capetonians love this place for its sandwiches, healthy drinks, clever cocktails, contemporary tea infusions and organic foods. For lunch, try the free-range duck breast or the warm salad made with fried Brie, mustard-roasted pear, Serrano ham and fresh chicory. Glass accordion doors open onto a front porch perfect for outdoor dining; you can also sit inside in a stark-white room.