The Best Restaurants on Bree Street (+ Surrounds)

The Best Restaurants on Bree Street (+ Surrounds)

Tune into the buzz to discover some of Cape Town’s foodie highlights.

The urban buzz and a slew of beautifully restored heritage buildings are just a part of Bree Street’s legendary appeal. Over the past decade or two, it has become a foodie destination of note, with pavement tables spilling their energy into the street. Yet Bree Street continues to hum with the contrasts of innercity life, as award-winning restaurants rub shoulders with car mechanics and panel beaters, design stores, cocktail bars, art galleries and fashion boutiques.

Here’s our pick of the best places to wine and dine, with a few places on the surrounding side streets for good measure. Tell us about your Bree Street favourites in the comments below.

Grub & Vine

Bree Street Restaurants: Grub And Vine

The casual name suggests a lack of pretension (true) but belies the delight of a meal at this Bree Street bistro – be it a leisurely lunch or atmospheric dinner. British-born chef Matt Manning does “no-nonsense, good tasty food and honest cooking”, which hardly conveys the nuance of his refined 5-course tasting menu or shorter menu du jour. Beautifully prepared and plated dishes are served in the elegant dining room (with the bustling kitchen in view) or the Green Room, with garden-inspired decor and a tiny courtyard with two alfresco tables. Think seasonally changing classics such as white onion risotto, roasted petit poussin and braised beef shin with escargot butter and Yorkshire pudding. All paired with a well-chosen list of local and international wines that recently topped the Star Wine List awards.
Good to know Grub & Vine’s Saturday Brunch Club offers fabulous small plates with the requisite bottomless bubbly, mimosas and bloody Marys.
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 3pm; 6pm – 9.30pm
Contact 021 216 0035, hello@grubandvine.co.za
Where to find it 103 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through dineplan

Ouzeri

This convivial restaurant channelling Aegean culture with its curved white walls, tapestries and mosaics, is chef Nic Charalambous’s tribute to his heritage. Here he recreates the regional cooking of Cyprus and Greece alongside contemporary dishes inspired by his travels through the Mediterranean. Snacks, mezze and mains feature comfort foods such as beef shin yiouvetsi and octopus stifado, lamb ribs with skordalia, and charcoal-grilled fish and seafood. The drinks list includes wine from the barrel, and an eclectic music selection creates a lively vibe. It’s the perfect spot for drinks and shared food.
Opening times Tuesday, 6pm – 9.30pm
Wednesday – Saturday, 12pm – 2.30pm; 6pm – 9.30pm
Contact 061 533 9071, seeyou@ouzeri.co.za
Where to find it 58 Wale Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Hacienda Coastal Mexican

Bree Street Restaurants: Hacienda

This eatery has turned up the heat on the Bree Street strip with its gaucho-chic interiors (leather booths, mosaic floors, ceramic drinkware) and spice-flecked food and drinks. Inspired by the cuisine of Mexico’s Baja Peninsula, the menu is made for sharing. There’s charcoal-grilled wagyu, chorizo prawns and seabass ceviche made with tiger’s milk; totopos (tortilla-like chips) served with three addictive salsas, five taco options and the must-try mole Hacienda. Just add flowing tequila, fabulous margaritas and a playlist of cool Latin tracks for a memorable night out.
Good to know There’s a half-price margarita happy hour every day 4pm – 5.30pm
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 10.30pm
Contact 021 422 0128, capetown@hacienda.co.za
Where to find it 92 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Boma on Bree

Bree Street Restaurants: Boma

This fiery new hotspot on Bree Street’s buzziest stretch comes courtesy of the bar-wizardry team at The Firm (Village Idiot, Harringtons and more), with consultation in the early stages from cutting-edge chef Vusi Ndlovu and Absie Pantshwa from Edge Africa. The cool boma-bar vibe is inspired by desert landscapes and big skies from the Karoo to the Kalahari, with fun decor touches of flamingo and cactus. The food and cocktails narrate the South African love of open-fire cooking with a modern twist, think jaffles, lamb ribs, pork chop and charred salad, reimagined as sharing plates, and a fireside vibe to settle into for the evening.
Good to know Coming soon downstairs: the Tiki Tomb cocktail bar, opening 5 October.
Opening times Wednesday – Sunday, 1pm – 2am
Contact 021 109 0039, boma@thefirmct.co.za
Where to find it 107 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Tomson

Bree Street Restaurants: Tomson

Discover South Cantonese street food with a kick, at unassumingly cool Tomson, the latest venture from the Max Bagels and Leo’s team. At the helm is third-generation Chinese-South African Andrew Kai, whose inspiration comes from the South Cantonese flavours of his childhood. Think wontons with pork and shrimp or shiitake and tofu all doused in a vibrant chilli sauce, or sliced Sichuan pork with a kick of kimchi. You’ll also find fiery and flavoursome chilli beef with broccoli in the most moreish sauce, roast Cantonese duck, and softly steamed white fish. The small white eatery offers a full view of (and glorious aromas from) the bustling kitchen if you’re lucky enough to nab a spot at the counter. Alternatively, and a winner in warmer weather, sit on the pavement benches – perfect for sharing some plates with friends.
Good to know Booking is via direct message on Instagram (or Dineplan), and is recommended. Else you can perch at neighbouring Leo’s for a glass of vino while you wait for a spot to open up.
Opening times Tuesday, 6pm – 10pm
Wednesday – Saturday, 12pm – 3pm; 6pm – 10pm
Contact @tomson_cpt
Address 120 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Scala

Bree Street Restaurants: Scala

In the atmospheric below-street-level space formerly occupied by ASH, chef Luciano Monosilio has undoubtedly stirred up the Italian scene in Cape Town, and taken it up a few notches. He arrived from Rome with the ultimate culinary calling card: one of the youngest Italian chefs to gain a Michelin star (at age 27), and as consultant chef imparts his skills and secret recipes to a resident team headed up by executive chef Justin Barker. The pastas are served as sharing plates, made in-house from three different types of dough (semolina, egg and white 00 flour), and topped with a variety of delectable seafood, chicken, meat and cheese sauces. It’s a beautiful marriage of traditional and cutting-edge cool. Luciano also brings the aperitivo culture to our shores, with cocktails, spritzes and cicchetti (snacks) served daily from 4pm until dinner. Little wonder Scala was recently awarded Two Forks by Gambero Rosso International.
Good to know Gluten-free pasta is available. During aperitivo hour (daily, 4pm – 5.30pm), treat yourself to one of four signature negroni cocktails, or buy any two cicchetti and receive a complimentary glass of Martini Prosecco, Fiero Spritz or Negroni Sbagliato.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 10.30pm
Contact 021 424 7204, capetown@scalapasta.co.za
Where to find 81 Church Street, Heritage Square, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Silk Asian Restaurant

Bree Street Restaurants: Silk Asian

The old stone walls and sash windows of Heritage Square (below where Africa Café used to be) make a fitting backdrop to an Asian-fusion theme that celebrates the age-old Silk Route and east meets west. As sister restaurant to nearby Bouchon Bistro, Silk’s approach is tapas-style, a plethora of small plates ranging from potstickers to succulent robatayaki fire-grill meats. Fresh punchy flavours make each dish a delight: crispy lamb wontons with pickled daikon, comfortingly soft takoyaki batter balls filled with octopus, and tender fire-grilled pork belly slices with jalapeno sauce. Silk’s informal vibe and elegant décor, paired with colourful cocktails or wines by the glass make it a popular spot for any occasion.
Good to know There’s an ongoing special of any three tapas dishes for R265.
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 4pm – 11pm
Contact 071 910 8122
Where to find it 108 Shortmarket Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Villa 47

Bree Street Restaurants: Villa-47

Villa 47 has been a stalwart on the Italian dining scene in Cape Town for close to a decade. At street level, Locanda is upmarket but unpretentious with a bustling café vibe, serving modern Italian cuisine packed with authentic flavour. The antipasto platters showcase the best imported Italian hams, salamis and cheeses (designed to share), or go for one of the gorgeously rich classic pastas such as paccheri salsiccia e gorgonzola. Mains range from a wagyu burger to saltimbocca, or sirloin steak with truffle sauce, and of course tiramisu is top of the dessert menu.
Good to know Breakfast is served until 11.30am (1pm on Saturday)
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7am –10pm
Saturday, 8.30am – 10pm
Contact 021 418 2740, reservations@villa47.co.za
Where to find it 47 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Chefs Warehouse at The Bailey

Bree Street Restaurants: Chefs Warehouse The Bailey

Liam Tomlin’s Chefs Warehouse is back on the block! Well, a new block, actually – across the road from where the original Chefs Warehouse opened its doors almost a decade ago. Taking over the ground floor space of The Bailey, the team have departed from Chefs Warehouse tradition by going à la carte, so you can pop in just for a few small plates, or go for the full chefs menu. Old favourites, such as salt-and-pepper squid with chilli, pineapple and caramelised ginger, Vietnamese rice paper rolls, and their signature risotto dish, are joined by a raft of exciting new dishes (gado gado, chicken larb, swordfish tartare among them) conceptualised by Tomlin and executive chef of The Bailey, Asher Abramowitz.
Good to know Upstairs in this heritage building you’ll find The Bailey Brasserie (on the first floor) and the Old Bailey Lounge Bar (on the second).
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 9pm
Contact 021 773 0440, reservations@the-bailey.co.za
Where to find it 91 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

Nish Nush

Bree Street Restaurants: Nish Nush

The original hummus hatch on Bree captured our hearts with its crispy falafels and succulent shwarmas. Now Nish Nush has moved two doors down to a bigger space with seating inside and out, and a pocket-sized courtyard at the back. Stone walls and stone-flagged steps, low wooden beams, café stools to perch on at the sunshine-yellow-tiled counter and at tables lining the wall opposite, make a cheerfully relaxed vibe, in keeping with the authentic Middle Eastern street food dynamic. There’s new stuff on the menu too – Lebanese arayes, falafel burgers and dreamy creamy hummus bowls topped with falafel, spiced mushrooms, or succulent beef shwarmas carved fresh from the spit. Pair your meal with selected wines, Jack Black beer on tap and their signature Arak limonito cocktail, a Middle Eastern take on the mojito.
Good to know You can still get everything on the menu to go. And even buy frozen falafels and falafel burgers to take home.
Opening times Monday – Thursday, 10.30am – 8.30pm
Friday, 10.30am – 9pm
Saturday 12pm – 9pm
Contact 063 483 4284, nishnushcpt@gmail.com
Where to find it 100 Bree Street, Cape Town

Clarke’s Dining Room

Bree Street Restaurants: Clarkes

The familiar white canopy and copper sign on Bree Street is still luring hungry hipsters for all-day breakfasts, brunch cocktails and lazy lunches. Clarke’s was ahead of the curve when it opened over a decade ago, with its Scandi decor, carefully sourced ingredients and artisanal kitchen – most of what’s on the menu is made in-house. It’s still of-the-moment: vegan-friendly, balancing healthy choices with sinful temptations. The kitchen shows off a dozen interesting takes on eggs for all-day breakfast, such as fire eggs (baked in a tomato-chickpea stew), and segues easily into lunch with sandwiches on Woodstock Bakery’s sourdough, soups, salads, and classic burgers on their own legendary home-baked burger buns. A smaller dinner menu features burgers, West Coast oysters, bar snacks and a dinner omelette.
Good to know This is a cashless establishment.
Opening times Monday, 7am – 4pm
Tuesday – Friday, 7am – 10pm
Saturday, 8am – 10pm; Sunday, 8am – 3pm
Contact 087 470 0165, info@clarkescapetown.co.za
Where to find it 133 Bree Street, Cape Town
Book through DinePlan

SeaBreeze Fish & Shell

Bree Street Restaurants: Seabreeze

Opened by Scottish restaurateurs, Alex and Ruth Grahame, from Aberdeen back in 2017, SeaBreeze has always celebrated the freshest of the local catch (on the SASSI approved list). The heritage building at the top of Bree has just had a breezy revamp and is looking fresher than ever with the addition of the SugarBird Wine Bar, offering a selection of 15 cap classiques by the flute and 40 by the bottle, as well as an extensive local wine list. On sunny days sit out on the wide pavement terrace and watch the world go by, while you feast on small plates such as fish tacos, prawn tempura and tuna sliders. Or go for generous mains of line-caught hake and chips, Cape Malay seafood curry, or whole roast fish Asian style, with a cocktail or two for good measure.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 9pm
Contact 074 793 9349
Where to find it 213 Bree Street, Cape Town
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Pizza Shed

Bree Street Restaurants: Pizza Shed

When it comes to toppings, Neapolitan purists generally keep theirs to a bare minimum; not  Pizza Shed. Owner James Williams has taken a more laissez-faire approach with his Canotto style of pizza (featuring an even puffier crust): keeping it “authentic” and also “offering all the toppings”. Great news for flavour fiends, as you get the option of adding top-notch ingredients onto your pizza – from Grana Padano to fior di latte cheeses, San Marzano tomatoes and classic pepperoni and Nduja (spicy pork sausage). The pizzas are utterly (and consistently) delicious – with just the right amount of chew, crunch and leopard print! The pizza dough itself is 48-hours proved (it makes a big difference to the end result), cooked in a wood-fired oven, and then flung into grateful hands. The Bree Street branch is tiny, just a few tables indoors, but plenty of pavement space for alfresco pizza parties.
Good to know The restaurant doesn’t take bookings, so simply walk in when you’re hungry. Check out Aperitif, a sparkling new bar next door.
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 12pm – 9.30pm
Contact details 071 342 5681
Address 231 Bree Street, Cape Town

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Disclaimer:

The Inside Guide has made every effort to ensure that the information in this post was correct at the time of publication. However, we do not assume any liability caused by errors, such as price, cost, time, and location.

Time of publication: 21 September 2023

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One Response to “The Best Restaurants on Bree Street (+ Surrounds)”

  1. Steven J Truslow

    You should add Vixi Social House to this list!

    Reply