The 40 Hottest New Restaurants in Cape Town 2018

The 40 Hottest New Restaurants in Cape Town 2018 Tjing Tjing Momiji

The Mother City's food scene is exploding, with an eclectic mix of restaurants popping up faster than you can say “tuna ceviche”.

Cape Town is ranked among the top culinary capitals of the world, rubbing shoulders with the likes of Sydney, London, Tokyo and Barcelona. We certainly are spoilt for choice when it comes to dining in our magnificent city – from tried-and-tested favourites to lesser-known gems and, of course, speciality restaurants, the options are endless.

Still, the city’s impressive foodscape continues to bulge, with new eateries opening up faster than you can knock back a tequila – all of which are ready when you are! We’ve rounded up the latest additions below – and even added some that are about to swing open their doors, because forewarned is forearmed! (And, we’re all about giving you the Inside Track, so to speak.) We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

1. TJING TJING

Tjing Tjing New Restaurant
Kleinjan Groenewald

The brand-new, reimagined Tjing Tjing is back! And bursting with energy, inspiration and a riot sights and sounds. At street level, you’ll find the buzzy Torii, where the pulsating pace, ultra-cool electro-indie beats, Harajuku-inspired decor and on-the-ball service are the perfect backdrop for flavour-popping, designed-to-share Japanese street food.
The first floor is home to the low-slung, reservations-only Momiji Bar, and the cool and composed Momiji restaurant, where diners can enjoy a 12-course kaiseki (multi-course haute cuisine) menu that pays homage to the seasons.
And, the cherry on top, is the perennial rooftop bar where top-drawer tipples, a selection of Japanese snacks and ice-cool beats are the order of the night.
As they say in Osaka: “Kanpai!” (Cheers!)
Opened July 2018
Opening times 10am – late
Contact 021 422 4374, info@tjingtjing.co.za
Where to find it 165 Longmarket Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

2. SEVEN

Seven New Restaurant

 

If you follow acclaimed chef and restaurateur George Jardine on Instagram, you’ll have noticed his recent infatuation with the number 7. And he’s just revealed why: he’s opening his seventh restaurant in shop seven at the Avenues Centre in Somerset West with wife Louise who was experiencing the seven-year itch. The aptly named Seven serves delicious and delicate plates for lunch and dinner, and opens in the first week of September 2018.
Opening September 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday (lunch and dinner)
Contact 021 851 3146, info@restaurantseven.co.za
Where to find it Shop 7, The Avenues, 1 Drama Street, Somerset West

3. Salsify at The Roundhouse

Roundhouse Hot New Restaurant

The Camps Bay institution, well-loved for its spectacular setting, will soon be receiving a Luke-Dale Roberts makeover (or should that be takeover?). You read right, the superstar chef and his wife Sandalene have earmarked the space for Luke’s protege Ryan Cole to showcase his talents as head chef. If the restaurant’s name is an omen of what’s to come, we’re looking forward to meaty vegetarian dishes and/or some tasty salsas. That’s about all we have to go on for now. That’s about all we can surmise for now.
Opening October 2018
Where to find it Roundhouse Road, Camps Bay

4. Riverine Rabbit

Like a hare in the headlines, this brand-new eatery, brought to you by sister duo Ash Heeger (of the now closed Ash restaurant) and Mandy van der Berg, is set to open in October 2018. Just off the tourist track on Cape Town’s Church Street, the sophisticated spot is named after the nearly-extinct Karoo animal, and is set to offer diners an exquisite selection of handcrafted menu items, while opening their minds to the importance of sustainability and conscious cooking. Guests will be able to select from a short three-course offering, a five-course reduced tasting menu, or go all the way with a carefully curated seven-course degustation, paired with carefully selected wines, and even an exciting Chef’s Table experience.
Opening October 2018
Contact info@riverinerabbit.com, marketing@riverinerabbit.com
Where to find it 81 Church Street, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town

5. Chefs Warehouse at Maison

Chefs Warehouse Maison: New Restaurants in Cape Town

It’s rated by seven of the country’s top chefs – including Michelin-starred Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen, Luke Dale-Roberts, Eric Bulpitt, Brad Ball, Rudi Liebenberg, Franck Dangereux and Reuben Riffel – as one of the best restaurants in Cape Town – which it most certainly is. So when chef-patron Liam Tomlin opened a new branch of Chefs Warehouse in Franschhoek, foodies in the winelands danced a jig of joy.
The newcomer moved into the space formerly occupied by The Kitchen, and is headed by chef David Schneider, who worked alongside chef Liam and Ivor Jones at Chefs Warehouse in Constantia.
As with Liam’s three other wildly popular restaurants, the focus is “global tapas”, served with estate’s excellent wines.
Opened November 2017
Opening times Wednesday – Monday, 9am – 5pm
Wednesday – Saturday, 7pm – 8.15pm
Contact 021 876 2116
Location Maison Estate, R45 Franschhoek

6. Janse & Co

Janse Co Kloof Street

After six delicious years at Maison in Franschhoek, chef Arno Janse van Rensburg decided to head for the city – Kloof Street, to be exact – to open this modern, boundary-pushing eatery with his partner Liezl Odendaal (who also sports an impressive culinary CV, having worked with Franck Dangereux and Luke Dale-Roberts, to name a few).
As he did at Maison, Arno has created a menu of inspired yet perfectly pared-down dishes, but instead of a relaxed farm setting, diners can now enjoy these palate-popping dishes in a super-stylish innercity environment. His starting point, as always: the best ingredients, prepared with passion, with a strong focus on provenance and seasonality, of course.
As Janse & Co’s delightfully affable restaurant manager, Ronel Smidt, says: “Don’t get too attached to anything on the menu (there are 20 in total, three of which are desserts), because he changes them regularly!”
Opened December 2017
Contact 021 422 0384, reservations@janseco.com 
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday, 6pm – 9pm
Wednesday – Saturday, 12pm – 2pm
Location 
Janse & Co, 75 Kloof Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

7. Upper Bloem

Green Pointers, are y’all ready for some edge-of-your-seat news? From the team behind Sea Point’s famed La Mouette comes Upper Bloem, a 40-seater fine-dining eatery on the Green Point strip. Inspired by his childhood growing up in the Bo Kaap (on Upper Bloem Street), head chef André Hill – in collaboration with La Mouette’s Henry Vigar – has devised an edgy yet refined menu of nine irreducibly delicious sharing plates (a steal at R395) that reflect his roots.
Echoing the menu, the curry-flavoured interiors – shades of brown, rust and teal – were designed by Cape Town maestro Liam Mooney, and are as warm and delicious as the food.
Says British-born co-owner Henry (with a wry grin): “Cape Town, as we all know, is the southernmost city in Europe, and many of our restaurants reflect that. Here, we wanted to showcase and celebrate authentic South African cuisine, which I think we’ve done through André.”
Good to know The dessert board is not included in the tasting menu but is a cloying denouement (R195 for two).
Opened May 2018
Opening times Wednesday – Saturday (lunch and dinner)
Tuesdays (dinner)
Contact 021 433 1442, reservations@ubrestaurant.co.za
Where to find it Shop 1, Winston Place, 65 Main Road, Green Point Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

8. EIKE

Eike New Restaurant
Claire Gunn

Everybody’s favourite “hogwart”, Bertus Basson has opened his sixth restaurant – in an historic building on Stellenbosch’s Dorp Street. An homage to Eikestad (the city of oaks), the intimate space is beautifully styled – think sumptuous emerald-green velvet chairs, an up-to-the-minute geometric-tiled wall and a kitchen that overlooks the 30-seater dining area.
Food-wise, the six-course dinner menu (R850) is a paean to the seasons, serving dishes that reflect Bertus and chef Kyle du Plooy’s passion for South African flavours. The utterly moreish roasted kale amuse bouche sets the tone for this creative feast; other highlights include the lamb-tartare bobotie; sliced plankievleis (steak); and the macadamia fudge, but my very favourite was the wildebeest and celeriac morsel, served on edible rice paper and dramatically displayed on a giraffe’s shoulder blade –  bravissimo! There is no limit to these two chefs’ imaginations.
And, to match the food, the wine list is wonderfully curated, with some unexpected and rare gems.
Says Bertus: “Eike is the expression of being South African. It’s a celebration of local cuisine, inspired by childhood memories of classic dishes and travels through the physical and cultural landscape of our diverse land. And, it’s our only eatery where we offer a set menu.”
Good to know Unlike other fine-dining experiences, you won’t leave hungry – that’s Bertus’s promise!
Opened August 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday, 6pm – late
Contact 021 007 4231, info@eikerestaurant.com
Where to find it 50 Dorp Street, Stellenbosch
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

10. The Shortmarket Club (Version 2)

Shortmarket Club New RestaurantTaking over the space formerly occupied by Outrage of Modesty, this new restaurant will be headed by The Shortmarket Club’s chef Wesley Randles in the kitchen, and Simon Widdison in the front-of-house. Information is scarce at the moment, but we’re all excited to see what these culinary veterans have in store for us at this new venue. The name has yet to be decided; we’ll keep you posted!
Opening
1 November 2018
Where to find it 
88 Shortmarket Street, Cape Town City Centre

11. BELLY OF THE BEAST

Belly of the Beast East City

This online-bookings-only fine-dining restaurant sprang up rather sneakily on Harrington Street when it opened on 21 August 2018. Owner-chef Neil Swart sold his wildly popular Arugula Bistro in Welgemoed to pursue dreams of unhindered culinary creativity, which he has done with co-owner and Anouchka Horn in their secret daily set menu.
The industrio-mod eatery serves a maximum of 20 guests per service, which Neil explains: “Cooking dishes on a smaller scale enhances the depth of flavour of each element.” An entirely exposed kitchen lines one side of the small space, with a street-facing window on the other.
The food is exceptional! For R450, you’re treated to five excellent courses, as well as bread service, a (life-changing) palette cleanser and an after-dessert delight (“a last hurrah”, as Neil calls it). You won’t find value like this anywhere else on the precinct.
Opened August 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday, 7pm – 10pm
Contact 021 461 0335, eat@bellyofthebeast.co.za
Where to find it 110 Harrington Street, Cape Town
Book now
Reviewer Michelle de Bruin

12. Protégé

Protege Hottest New

It’s no secret that Franschhoek is bursting at the seams with fine-dining eateries, so the decision to open a casual restaurant in the valley is certainly savvy. From renowned chef-proprietor Scot Kirton (La Colombe, La Petite Colombe and Foxcroft) comes Protégé, a new culinary destination at Le Quartier Français. Aptly named, the restaurant will provide young talented chefs the opportunity of honing their skills, with chef Stephen Raaff heading the kitchen.
Scot wanted to create a place that locals could call home, while enjoying top-quality, seasonally driven comfort food.
The restaurant space has been designed around the central show kitchen, with al fresco dining areas at both ends to ensure a wonderful dining experience carefully considered by interior wizards, Rotem Shachar and Megan Bon.
Opening October 2018
Opening times Monday – Sunday
Breakfast: 7am – 10am
Lunch: 12pm – 2pm
Dinner: 5.30pm – 8.30pm
Contact 021 492 2222
Where to find it Le Quartier Français, Corner Berg Street and Wilhelmina Street, Franschhoek

13. Beleef Restaurant

Beleef New Restaurant

When the owners of Ryan’s Kitchen in Huguenot Street put their building up for sale, chef Herman Steyn decided to fulfill his lifelong dream, and open his own restaurant. A boerseun from the Free State, Herman’s aim was to take locals on a trip down memory lane, and give visitors an authentic boerekos experience in a luxe setting. The interiors are rich and moody, inviting diners to linger longer.
The food Strictly seasonal with a farm-to-fork approach, the menu changes regularly. Our favourites from the winter 2018 menu were the Smoorsnoek starter with mousse, purée and a crisp – an umami medley of salt and sweet, and the perfect appetite stirrer. For mains I opted for the Ou Kaapse Kos – which was tamatiekos (tomato stew) lamb shank on the day we visited. The fall-off-the-bone meat was served on a bed of raisin-and-tumeric rice – the perfect balance of Malaysian spices. The gigantic soufflé served with custard-flavoured ice cream was a revelation – in more ways than one. Take a peek at the full menu here.
Opened 25 July 2018
Contact 010 110 8325, info@beleefrestaurant.co.za
Opening times Daily: 12pm – 3pm; 6pm – 9pm
Where to find it 1 Place Vendome, Huguenot Street, Franschhoek
Reviewer Michelle de Bruin

14. The Movable Feast 

Moveable Feast New Restaurant

Raise your hand if Rafiki’s on Kloof Nek Road holds fond (and debaucherous) memories for you. Good times indeed…The erstwhile home of one of Cape Town’s most iconic dive bars has undergone two overhauls in less than a year, the most recent of which has seen Parisian owners Vincent John Soimaud and Rafael Wallon-Browstone transform it into a French-style bistro and café. (It was The Sunnyside Inn for a fleeting moment.)
The restaurant’s name is derived from a Hemingway quote, in which the famous author referred to Paris as “a movable feast”. Dressed in second-hand finds from flea markets, junk shops and a defunct French restaurant, The Moveable Feast is a Moulin Rouge-inspired feast for the eyes.
Separate from the decidedly upmarket restaurant is the bar, where the visual extravaganza continues: an old piano with exposed mechanics steals the show, backlit by a neon-lined stage. You’ll be hard-pressed to find us anywhere else on Friday and Saturday evenings.
The menu is as French as the red velour booths. You simply have to start with the classic French onion soup: impeccably tasty and bursting with flavour. Meat-lovers will devour the springbok shank, served with a side of pomme pureé (mashed potatoes) – the epitome of comfort food. The portions are rather small, so we’d recommend you order a side, too. If you’re in the mood for something light, but feel adventurous, the quail is a must! Cooked to absolute perfection with a slightly sweet, Asian sauce, it comes with pickled radish salad. I’ve never tasted anything quite like it before.
Opened June 2018
Opening times Bistro: Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 3pm and 6pm – 10pm
Bar: 11am – late
Contact 087 897 9749, eat@themoveablefeast.co.za
Where to find it 13 Kloof Nek Road, Cape Town
Reviewer Michelle de Bruin

15. The Poké Co.

The Poke Co New Restaurant

Hailing from Hawaii, poké is one of the coolest (and healthiest) food trends to have washed up onto our shores of late, with raw and fresh bowls of goodness proliferating around the Mother City faster than you can say “aloha”!
Hands down, the best poké in town is from The Poké Co. on Loop Street whose founder, 31-year-old Andrew Flanagan, always had dreams of opening a seafood concept store in Cape Town. It was during a surfing trip in Indonesia that he fell in love with poké. “Its uniqueness and deliciousness quickly convinced me that poké is the seafood scene that Cape Town has been missing,” he explains.
Essentially a deconstructed raw-fish salad, poké – pronounced po-kay – is usually made with cubes of ahi (or yellowfin) tuna layered on a bed of sushi rice, with slices of raw and fresh vegetables layered on top.
We recommend The Windward: a vibrant mix of tuna, cucumber, edamame, avocado and pickled ginger, artfully arranged atop a bed of shredded nuri, with a heavenly Hawaiian-heat and creamy wasabi dressing that brings all the fresh and raw tastes and textures together perfectly. I was in raptures. And if raw tuna isn’t your thing, there are tofu, prawn, chicken (cooked, of course), and salmon options. You can build your own, or go for one of Andrew’s beautifully calibrated combinations. There’s even a poké burrito and breakfast bowls.
Good to know They currently don’t have a liquor licence, so BYOB!
Opened January 2018
Contact 087 470 0125, info@pokecoct.com
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7am – 9.30pm
Saturday, 8am – 9.30pm
Sunday, 11am – 9.30pm
Where to find it 90 Loop Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

16. Ragamuffin Curry

Hottest New Ragamuffin

This gem of an eatery in a suburban street of Kenilworth deserves to be shouted about from the rooftops! It’s a small space (just six tables) with a huge heart, where you’re guaranteed a good time – and an even better meal – without having to take out a loan.
Owned and run by 31-year-old Thinus Ras – a towering, softly spoken, black-beaded “boerseuntjie” and mechanical engineering graduate, Ragamuffin Curry offers a selection of traditional favourites (based on Heston Blumenthal and Gordon Ramsay recipes), as well as some less conventional dishes, such as the Margate braaied-chicken curry and pork-and-mango curry.
The vibe The eclectic hodge-podge of art, decor and furniture – including shweshwe bunting and a corrugated-iron roof  – enhances the cheery atmosphere.
Honouring vegetarians The vegetarian dishes on the menu are by no means an afterthought. “I’ve put a lot of thought and effort into honouring non-meat-eaters,” says Thinus. As for dessert, there are four items, ranging from R15 to R35! In fact, everything is ridiculously well-priced. Ridiculously!
Excellent food, personable service and a lovely atmosphere make this a winner.
Opened December 2017
Opening times Monday – Sunday 11am – 9pm
Contact 083 548 0708
Where to find it 3 Mains Avenue,  Kenilworth (Next to Noyes Pharmacy)
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

17. Bao Down

Bao Down Hottest New
Visi

Big things, they say, come in small packages – which is certainly the case for Oranjezicht’s newest culinary gem, Bao Down. Though it’s only been open for a month or so, this Asian-American 28-seater restaurant always seems packed to the brim with regulars looking for flavoursome dishes.
Behind a green-mosaic exterior, former head chef of Chefs Warehouse, Graham Oldfield, has devised a concise menu of six mains, two sides, and a dessert of the day, while his wife Philippa has created a beautifully calm space, with soft-pink interior walls, vintage exotic-bird prints, antique mirrors and origami-esque lights.
The food The plates may be small but what they lack in size, they make up in flavour. Bao buns, moreish spicy chicken wings, and delicious beef brisket are just a few of the items on offer, artfully plated on crockery from Chinese supermarkets across Cape Town.
Opened June 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday, 6pm – 10pm
Sunday, 12pm – 3pm
Contact 066 022 1165, restaurantbaodown@gmail.com
Where to find it 3 Vredehoek Avenue, Oranjezicht, Cape Town

18. Swan Café

Swan Cafe New Restaurant
Micky Hoyle

The unlikely new kid in Cape Town’s business district is a sexy French crêperie that oozes Parisian charm, style and panache. On the walls, representations of Leonardo da Vinci’s and Jean-Léon Gérôme’s Leda and the Swan swathe the crêperie in romantic mysticism, with accents of red, white and blue adding freshness. The delicious aromas of pancake batter, melting chocolate and brewing coffee will certainly lure you in, especially on a chilly winter morning.
The menu has something for everyone –  even health fiends, who’ll love the savoury, gluten-free, buckwheat-based galettes.
We recommend the chicken-and-mushroom crêpe with bechamel and truffle oil, or the goat’s cheese and caramelised apple with toasted walnuts, West Coast wild honey and thyme. On a sweeter note, expect classics such as cinnamon sugar and homemade salted caramel alongside new and exciting flavours of red wine-poached pears and dark chocolate ganache with candied walnuts. Every bite will have you singing “ooh la la, c’est magnifique!”
Opened May 2018
Opening times Monday – Friday, 8am – 4pm
Saturday, 8am – 2pm
Contact 079 45 44 758, bonjour@swancafe.co.za
Where to find it Corner Buitenkant and Barrack Street, Zonnebloem, Cape Town

19. TABLE SEVEN

Table Seven Hottest New

Private chef Luke Wonnacott and his wife Katie come with lorry loads of culinary experience, most notably a stint at Gordon Ramsay’s Maze at the One&Only (Luke also served as head chef at Ossiano at Atlantis in Dubai). For the past few years, they’ve been focusing on event catering, menu consultation, and cooking classes; and even though they love it, they’ve missed being able to cook for and entertain guests in their own space.
Which is why they decided to launch their Chef’s Table experience, where around 20 guests can enjoy a smorgasbord of flavours – seven courses to be precise – in a relaxed and intimate environment.
It differs from a regular restaurant experience in that it’s more intimate: guests get to sit at a long wooden table in the heart of Luke’s kitchen, while he cooks up a storm.
Opening September 2018
Good to know Although the Chef’s Table experiences take place on certain dates and need to be booked in advance, Table Seven is open daily for lunch On the menu are two dishes of the day – which change daily – that diners can enjoy around the kitchen counter. There are also plans to open a deli.
Contact 079 286 1811, katie@tableseven.co.za
Where to find it The Salt Orchard, Unit C5, Corner of Briar and Yew Streets, Salt River

20. The Sunshine Food Co

Sunshine Co Hottest New

Painstakingly made with love and home-grown ingredients, Elisha Madzivadondo’s vegan burgers are unfathomably scrumptious – even for omnivores like myself. A regular fixture on the Cape Town market circuit, Zimbabwean-born Elisha decided it was time to open a permanent shop, which he did in Sea Point, with the help of a local doctor. The small, brightly coloured café has a big heart, selling delicious and healthy patties, wraps, smoothies and juices. Made with black beans and sprouts, which Elisha grows himself at Oude Molen Eco Village, the burgers are topped with hummus, avo and falafel patties – and pack a texture punch of note.
Opened May 2018
Opening times Daily, 9am – 8pm
Contact 081 825 0925
Where to find it Corner of Glengarriff Road and Main Road, Three Anchor Bay

21. The Shop

Fans of the former Buzbey Grill, which enjoyed pride of place among the Sea Point set for its old-school bistro atmosphere and sublime steaks, will certainly not be disappointed with the brand-new offering that has taken its place. Run by hands-on, energetic and passionate husband-and-wife team, Kyle and Gabi Knight (both qualified chefs who have worked in various countries), The Shop offers prepared-to-perfection cuts, and then some…
The food The refreshing and simple menu changes every six weeks, and chef Kyle knows where every ingredient in his kitchen comes from, which is evident in the flavours of all the dishes we tried – from the delectable pork belly (served on the creamiest white bean pureé with a hint of salsa verde to round it off) to the line fish of the day with leeks, potatoes and a white wine sauce. Not to mention the crispy pulled-beef croquettes with vegetables and broth that certainly ups the comfort-food ante.
The vibe This is a good old-fashioned neighbourhood joint (with a light and airy new look), that makes you feel like you’ve stepped into a charming borough in New York City, where the chef knows your name – and just how you like your favourite dish prepared.
Your must try Whether you’re a vegetarian or not, the roast head of cauliflower with a buttermilk and brown butter dressing and almond dukkah is a must!
Opened November 2017
Contact 083 782 5240
Opening times Wednesday – Friday, 12pm – 2pm
Tuesday – Sunday, 6pm – 11pm
Where to find it 14 Three Anchor Bay Road, Sea Point
Reviewer Riekie Human

22. No Fixed Address

No Fixed Address New Restaurant

What began as a top-rated underground restaurant in Vancouver in 2013 by South African-born chef Steve Duke, No Fixed Address has found its way to Cape Town, via a globe-trotting jaunt worthy of Phileas Fogg! Steve started his career as a private chef in London, then jumped the pond to Vancouver, where the No Fixed Address restaurant eventually transformed into a catering business, landing a feature on the Food Network, and catering Michael Bublé’s 40th birthday party!
Its most recent incarnation is a cool space on Observatory’s Lower Main Road that serves flavourful but boundaryless street food.
A covered alley, decorated with ex-con Luntu Vumazonke’s artwork, leads to an outside dining area, where you can watch Steve cooking up a storm from the comfort of rustic wooden picnic benches. A small canvas canopy and gas heaters complete the cosy vibe.
The food Expect the likes of slow-braised lamb shank and butternut green curry with crispy sushi rice and basil; miso-marinated zucchini with pickled carrots, daikon, crispy potato and spicy aioli and Japanese fried chicken with sesame noodles, sriracha mayo and a soy-ginger dressing. Mouthwatering!
Please note There’s no liquor license at the moment, so BYOB!
Good to know This is a walk-in restaurant, so come early to secure a seat. The space can be booked for catered events.
Opened July 2018
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 8am – 8pm
Sunday, 8am – 5pm
Contact 073 070 5386, steve@nofixedaddresscatering.com
Where to find it 76 Lower Main Road, Observatory, Cape Town
Reviewer Alicia Chamaillé

23. Riva Fish House

Riva Fish House New Restaurant

If you love your seafood packed with authentic flavours, and served by warm, passionate hosts, then you must try Riva, the newest kid on the De Waterkant block. Opened by Italian chefs and friends, Nico Rovarini and Federico Rocca, it’s already a popular haunt.
Opening date July 2018
Opening times: Monday – Friday, 12pm to 2pm
Monday – Saturday, 6pm – 10pm
Contact: 078 443 4164, 021 418 0657, rivacapetown@gmail.com
Where to find it: 24/4 Napier Street, De Waterkant, Cape Town, 8001

24. Gardens Collectors Club

Gardens Collectors Club Hottest New

“A meeting place for new friends and old souls” is their promise, which immediately sets the tone at this newcomer on Kloof Street. These warm sentiments are echoed in various other aspects, such as the green-felt notice board at the entrance that’s reminiscent of an old-school bowling club, and the pamphlet menu with its charming, old-fashioned lettering.
Housed in the space that was previously home to Chalk & Cork, GCC is a collaboration between Devil’s Peak Brewery and Chalk & Cork’s former owners, Amy and Marc Botes. And, even though beer is the main event, the grub is nothing to sneeze at. Chef Zunaid Gangat has created a finger-licking selection of mains, sides and desserts to accompany the excellent selection of beer and wine.
We recommend the chicken wings, with beautiful homemade pickles and a yoghurt-and-herb dip; and the crispy calamari for starters. The bone-marrow burger (a 200g free-range, grass-fed Frankie Fenner patty), served with shoestring fries that have been tossed in the marrow oil, is excellent; and the beer-battered hake tacos (three large portions for R90) are brilliant value!
Opened August 2018
Good to know Enquire about the Bloedlemoen G&T special. R21 for a double shot.
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 12am
Contact 021 422 5822, frontdesk@gardenscollectorsclub.co.za
Where to find it 51 Kloof Street, Gardens
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

25. The Electric

Hottest New Electric

Does Cape Town really need another juice bar, we hear you ask… Only if it offers something special, which The Electric does in spades, as you’ll discover the moment you step off the busy street and under the bright yellow entranceway into the light-filled interior. Just six months ago, this inspiring space was the burnt-out remains of an auto-electric shop… The transformation is so dramatic, it feels energising.
The fridge full of brightly coloured bottles is a siren song. The six different coloured juices (green, red, yellow, orange, pink and white) offer various flavour combinations, including the sweet, fresh and zesty watermelon, mint, basil and lime, my favourite.
The nut milks are a rare treat – five flavours across four nuts (almond, cashew, Brazilian and walnut) with different flavour profiles. And then there are the shots – small bottles packed with punch: activated charcoal, ginger or orange (with turmeric, ginger and honey).
The food A small menu offers smoothies and eggs for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch. Choose from Tom’s famous five-seed bread, baguette or ciabatta, with five fabulously fresh fillings on offer, including salmon and cream cheese.
Just as suited to a quickie breakfast, lunch on the go, a three-hour-long working session or a chill session upstairs, this new café has a whole lot of heart and an energising mix of food and drink.
Insider tip Return your glass bottle for a R5 bottle deposit.
Opened March 2018
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7.30am to 6pm, Saturdays, 9am to 2pm
Contact 0214610916, kay@the-electric.com, www.the-electric.com
Where to find it 48 Canterbury Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Bridget McNulty

26. Pauline’s Stand-up Coffee Bar

Coffee Bar

Brought to you by Jon-Paul Bolus of Loading Bay fame, Pauline’s is the country’s first stand-up coffee bar (it’s how Italians take their coffee: quick, strong, standing up!). The idea, as the name suggests, is to do away with tables, chairs and other interior decor; and focus purely on the coffee. Patrons order at the counter, and enjoy their java on their feet. An invigorating way to start your day.
Good to know Also situated at Artem Centre in Sea Point is Jon Paul’s other new project: Sans, an “ethical green grocer” that also sells speciality home goods. It includes a deli stocked with fresh produce sourced directly from farmers.
Opened June 2018
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7am – 4pm
Saturday, 8am – 4pm
Sunday, 8am – 2pm
Where to find it Artem Centre, 277 Main Road, Sea Point

27. Bistrot Pascale

Bistrot Pascale New Restaurants

When we first caught wind that an authentic Italian-owned eatery had opened in Woodstock in May 2018, we scrambled to find out more. The already popular restaurant serves delicious pizzas (possibly the best in Cape Town, we’re told) and saucy pastas in an intimate setting. And while we haven’t had a bite yet –  as they’re currently closed for winter (until 20 August 2018) – we know it’ll be worth the wait.
Good to know The restaurant is closed until 20 August 2018
Opened May 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Sunday, 10.30am – 10.30pm
Contact 021 447 3359
Where to find it 85 Roodebloem Road, Woodstock, Cape Town

28. Sotano Bree Street

Sotano New Restaurant

Imagine my surprise when Google Maps said we’d arrived at our destination, only to discover that Sotano’s new branch had taken the place of cult favourite and Bree Street stalwart, The Odyssey Gastropub. My shock was short-lived, as the new owners have retained the warm and cosy vibe of its predecessor, while upping the ante slightly.
The refreshed interiors are chic and trendy, akin to a modern Spanish bistro, while the ambience is upbeat yet laidback – the perfect spot for I-don’t-feel-like-cooking Wednesdays, or let’s-go-for-drinks Fridays.
The menu Open all day, the breakfast, lunch and dinner menus have strong Spanish flavours (except the sushi menu, of course), yet each offers a few contemporary options if you’re not keen on Mediterranean flavours. We recommend the paella and the pork ragu (although, everything we had was so, so good). You won’t be disappointed.
Don’t miss Live reggae by The Rivertones, who do Marley covers, on Wednesdays between 7pm and 9pm and a DJ on First Thursdays and Fridays between 9pm and 12pm.
Opened June 2018
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 7.30am – 10pm
Contact 021 422 0567, info@sotano.co.za
Where to find it 199 Bree Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Michelle De Bruin

29. Today & Tomorrow

Kloof Street has added yet another fab feather in its cap with this new and already-bustling hotspot. Located in the space that was once home to Mitico Restaurant, Today & Tomorrow is the sister of Yours Truly – the popular locale up the street. But while Yours Truly is great for laidback DJ beats, chatter and drinks, Today & Tomorrow is perfect for a relaxed sit-down bite with an edge.
Casually laid tables overflow with all types: everyone from the excitable Yours Truly locals, couples on dates, friends catching up, and even the occasional family sharing a plate of loaded fries.
Many aspects hint to its part in the Yours Truly group (similar logo design, hanging plants, young waitstaff and twinkling fairy lights), but T&T has a magic of its own that will have you returning, er, today and tomorrow!
The menu is unpretentious, and features wholesome, darn delicious classics: everything from smoothie bowls, eggs benedict, and banana bread to salads, pizza, pasta, fried chicken, and  steak sandwiches.
We recommend the house burger: a tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef patty on a heavenly toasted-brioche bun, with garlic mayo and a side of your choice. There’s also a delectable dessert menu that features crème brûlée, cheesecake, tiramisu, and a gooey chocolate brownie, as well an extensive drinks menu, offering everything from wine, beer and spirits, to fruit juices and freshly brewed coffee.
Opened 16 May 2018
Opening times  Sunday – Tuesday, 8am – 12amWednesday – Saturday, 8am – 2am
Contact 021 422 0175, info@yourstrulycafe.co.za
Where to find it 71 Kloof Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Kent Cloete

30The Ceviche Bar

Hottest New Ceviche Bar

You’ll feel like you’ve landed in a Scandi-chic Pinterest board when you enter The Ceviche Bar. Clean, breezy, light and bright, the restaurant is situated on the first floor, above a coffee roastery, and entered through a clothing store.
The menu is everything I want in a menu: two breakfast offerings available till 12, and seven options for lunchtime diners, two of which are vegan.
The fish Sublime. The Ceviche Mango (lime-cured kingklip served with mango and sweet potato al dente topped with red chilli and coriander) is zesty, fragrant, fresh and instantly satisfying. The lime-cured Salmon Tiradito, served on a bed of julienne cucumber and topped with sesame seeds, spring onions, chilli, soya sauce and lime, is another winner. Peruvian and pure (with the bonus of being light, and packed with nutritional value).
Good to know Owners Tamryn Bruinders and Dylan Norton are not only warm, super-efficient and friendly, they’re also avid seafood lovers and visibly love what they do. They’ll be introducing scallops, oysters, locally sourced rainbow trout and Patagonian squid, as they create dishes for their new menus.
Opened March 2018
Opening times Monday – Friday, 12pm – 4pm
Tuesday & Thursday, 6 – 10pm
Contact 063 223 5551, reservations@thecevichebar.co.za
Where to find it 103 Sir Lowry Road, Woodstock
Reviewer Li Protheroe

31. Jakes on the Common

Since the closure of the original Jakes in Kenilworth, the mother-and-son duo behind the classy eatery have opened up in Noordhoek, in a glorious setting at the foot of Chapman’s Peak Drive. Like Jakes in the Village (Steenberg in Tokai), the new property is elegant yet unpretentious, and it shares the same interesting and international menu. But, to suit its surrounds, Jakes on the Common is rustic and a tad quirky.
With a toddler in tow, on an autumn afternoon, we decided to go alfresco. The sun was out and the view picture-postcard perfect. We quickly ordered a mac ‘n cheese off a separate kiddies’ menu, and the Wild Mushroom Ravioli starter for us to share: delicious and creamy, but not too rich.
The menu has a decidedly Oriental slant, with a Thai prawn and chicken curry, an Asian pork stirfry and two Indian curries. There’s also a South-American inspired chimichurri T-bone steak, salads, a range of Moroccan flatbreads, a couple of gourmet hotdogs, and extravagant American-style burgers and sliders.
My Pulled Pork Burger was exceptional: sweet and succulent pork on a bed of fresh and crunchy shredded beetroot and carrot. As was the Roasted Butternut, Feta & Beetroot Salad.
The drinks menu is impressive: a surprisingly good selection of inexpensive wines and wines by the glass, which is a rare thing in upmarket restaurants.
We left no space for dessert, but I’m told the Dessert Platter is the way to go. The service is swift, warm and attentive.
While Jakes describes itself as a family restaurant and caters for children, I got the impression they would prefer not to. A sign inside the restaurant reads: “We love children, but not in the bar, lounge or on the furniture” – you might wish you had left your sprog at home with a nanny.
Opened December 2017
Opening times Tuesday – Saturday, 8.30am – 10pm
Sunday, 8.30am – 5pm
Monday, 12pm – 10pm
Contact 021 789 0445, noordhoek@jakes.co.za
Reviewer Karen Read

32. Skinny Legs at Maison Mara

Breakfast Skinny Legs

Located on a quiet cobblestoned street in the cool-quaint district of De Waterkant, just behind the busy Cape Quarter shopping centre, this second branch of the popular Skinny Legs Luxury Café offers an intimate hideaway from the CBD hustle and bustle.
The cosy haven is frequented by everyone from suits seeking their pre-work caffeine fixes, to yoga mat-toting diners looking for post-workout fuel, and friends catching up over a freshly squeezed juice. The atmosphere is a more laid-back one, and is best for a long, lazy breakfast with time to spare, so don’t settle in if you’re in a huge rush.
Rustic stone walls, moody lighting, and bursts of fresh indoor plants set the scene, with deliciously fresh, wholesome meals and friendly staff completing the picture.
On sunny days, sit outside on the cobblestoned road and people-watch over all-day breakfasts of homemade granola, raw muesli, avo toast and an apple pie smoothie; when it’s nippy, pull up a chair at one of the minimalist white tables inside, and warm up with the comforting coconut quinoa porridge, eggs-made-your-way, or a salad, pasta or sandwich for lunch.
Opened February 2018
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7am – 4pm
Saturday, 8:30am – 2pm
Contact 021 461 2717, info@skinnylegs.co.za
Where to find it 5 Jarvis Street, De Waterkant, Cape Town
Reviewer Kent Cloete

33. Between Us 

Between Us New Restaurant

Twin sisters Jesse and Jamie Friedberg have created a fresh, modern (and rather sanitised) New York-style space that serves vibrant and original breakfasts and lunches with a wholesome edge. The morning menu includes items such as honeycomb cashew butter fruit-compote oats; trout-and-greens frittata; and, of course, a full English breakfast. Lunches include deconstructed salad Niçoise, an utterly heavenly oxtail ragu pasta, Chalmar beef fillet and chargrilled chicken.
As scrumptious and beautifully prepared as my ragu was, I feel R160 is overpriced for a small plate of pasta in town (in the winelands, I’d be more inclined to pay the heftier price tag).
Opened May 2018
Contact 021 823 8695, info@betweenus.capetown
Opening times Monday – Saturday 8am- 4pm
Where to find it 176 Bree Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

34. No. 89

No. 89 Hottest New

Cape Town’s newest (and only) Scandinavian food bar has opened its doors on Bree Street. The space is Scandi-inspired, with a creative industrial edge, and the food is fresh, vibrant and seasonal, with lots of salmon!
Owner Herman Bezuidenhout’s passion for coffee shines through – most notably in their Ugandan-Brazilian blend – and is sure to keep even the staunchest caffeine fascists satisfied. Their cold brew, extracted for 14 hours, is made with condensed milk, and is the perfect summer soother.
The food If you like salmon, you’ll be in nirvana. We enjoyed the beetroot-cured salmon sandwich and a veggie burger, black bun and all, which came with chips and onion rings. For dessert we had the 89 Reasons Why – a rich vanilla and cardamom panna cotta served with dark chocolate and coffee cream affogato – superb!
Good to know Plans are afoot to open an old-school gin and tequila bar downstairs once their liquor licence lands (sometime in early October).
Opened August 2018
Opening times Tuesday – Thursday, 7.30am – 5pm
Friday, 7.30am – 6pm
Saturday, 8am – 6pm
Sunday, 9am – 4.30pm
Monday, 7.30am – 4.20pm
Contact 062 564 3310, no89coffee@outlook.com
Where to find it 221 Bree Street, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town
Reviewer Alicia Chamaillé

35. Jusu

Jusu Hottest New

From restaurateur Cheyne Morrisby (Cheyne’s, Shio and Lucky Bao) comes another gem to the small seaside suburb of Hout Bay. Jusu (a Japanese version of the word “juice”) serves an assortment of organic cold-pressed juices, Japanese herbal teas, booster smoothies (packed with superfoods), Deluxe coffee, and breakfast bowls of Acai and Chia Pudding.
The minimalist modern interior is reminiscent of a traditional dimly lit Japanese walk-in café, yet the bursts of fresh greenery and blue walls add a touch of Cape Town. Perfect for sit-down catch ups or on-the-go refuels, Jusu is a welcome addition to the ever-growing bay.
Opened March 2018
Opening times From 7am
Contact cheynemorrisby@gmail.com
Where to find it Main Road, Hout Bay, Cape Town

36. Tomo Japanese Restaurant

“You’ll find some of the best Japanese restaurants in the world in my hometown, Dalian in China,” declares David Yan, the owner of this delicious Asian-fusion eatery on the corner of Loop and Shortmarket Streets. A jack of all trades, David was single-handedly responsible for designing and installing all the interiors of his new baby and, along with his five-chef-strong team, devised the mouthwatering menu, too.
You simply have to have the Tomo Sashimi (we chose tuna), topped with ginger, garlic, red onion, spring onion, sesame oil, red chilli and ponzu sauce; Pan-Fried Prawn Dumplings; and Tempura Udon Noodles, in dashi broth topped with two tempura prawns and kakiage (strips of vegetable tempura) – slurpalicious!
37ighlight of our meal was the knowledgeable and friendly service by Sakhumzi, who designed our entire meal, recommending something from each section of the menu. As we weren’t that hungry, we skipped the Robata (Japanese braai) and Teppanyaki – all the more reason to return.
Opened May 2018
Opening times Monday – Wednesday, 12pm – 9.30pm
Thursday – Saturday, 12pm – 11.30pm
Contact 021 422 0635, tomocapetown@gmail.com
Where to find it 86 Loop Street, Cape Town
Reviewer Nikki Benatar

37. Cushty Deli


InstaEats Cape Town

British slang for “comfortable and easy-going”, this neighbourhood deli on the corner of a narrow residential street in Green Point, serves delicious café-style delights that has ravenous morning runners and caffeine fiends lining up at the door.
Owners Roy and Anna Moore have created a cosy vibe, in a space that’s alive with energy, with casual wooden-table seating and chalkboard menus setting the scene for a laptop date or friendly catch-up.
For breakfast, tuck into a hearty plate of bacon and eggs or a healthy fruit-and-yoghurt bowl, and come lunchtime, choose from a variety of readymade salads and continental cold meat dishes displayed on shelves, or order a gourmet sandwich off the à la carte menu. In addition to the grub, there are also freshly squeezed juices, kombucha, smoothies, coffee and tea, not to mention an array of scrumptious take-home snacks, and bottles of preserves.
Weekends (especially Sundays) are the busiest, so get there early to snag a seat at this up-and-coming favourite.
Opened March 2018
Opening times Monday – Sunday, 7am – 7pm
Contact 072 654 2508
Where to find it 6 St Georges Road, Green Point, Cape Town
Reviewer Kent Cloete

38. Tap|Eat at the Franschhoek Beer Co

Hottest New Tap Eeat

It’s no secret that the Franschhoek Valley is aburst with fine-dining restaurants and award-winning wine farms. But where do you go if you’re a beer lover (or dating a beer lover) and in the mood for a low-key yet splendid meal? Luckily for us, Alex McCormack, Frank Rodriguez and Reuben Riffel identified this gap! Alex and Frank went above and beyond and produced a stellar range of craft beers, opening the Valley’s first microbrewery, alongside a tap room and restaurant. Tap|Eat is where Reuben entered the picture and, in collaboration with head chef Nick Oosthuizen (ex Foliage), developed a mezze-style menu that’s all about fresh, local, superb-quality ingredients. Each dish is made with organic produce that’s sourced directly from the gardens on the farm, while the in-house baked breads are made using the beers on offer. Nick has an exceptional knack for layering flavours and textures, taking something seemingly simple like a tuna salad to gourmet level.
We love the beer cocktails and the beer-and-food pairing experience – two clever concepts that aim to introduce beginner beer-drinkers to the world of barley and hops.
The vibe is laid-back yet elegant, owing to modern, sleek interiors.
Order a few plates to share, or a burger with a side of chips (if you’re a beer-and-burger type of guy or gal).
Opened December 2017
Opening times Tuesday – Sunday, 10am – 6pm
Contact 021 8762092, info@franschhoekbeerco.co.za
Where to find it R45, Franschhoek
Reviewer Michelle de Bruin

39. Lekker Vegan

Lekker Vegan: New Restaurants in Cape Town

Despite what it says on the label, 90% of the happy diners at this cool new joint aren’t even vegan, or so we’re told… Lekker Vegan is the brainchild of James Knaap who became vegan after battling and overcoming a chronic illness through conscious eating. Having worked at the Vegan Junk Food Bar in Amsterdam, James realised that Capetonians simply had the wrong idea about what it meant to eat vegan – it’s not all carrot sticks and salads. Lekker Vegan’s menu includes delicious gourmet burgers, Gatsbys and nuggets that are so tasty, you won’t want to share.
The vibe This eatery keeps things easy, funky and modern, with accents of rose-tinted copper and plants displayed on one wall and the brand’s bright, simplistic logo on the other, suspended wooden counters, and cheeky urban music playing in the background.
Good to know 95% of the packaging is environmentally friendly.
Opened December 2017
Opening times Monday – Thursday, 12pm – 10pm
Friday, 12pm – 3am
Saturday, 1pm – 3am
Sunday, 3pm – 10pm
Contact info@lekkervegan.co.za
Location 37 Barrack Street, Corner of Harrington & Barrack Streets, Zonnebloem
Reviewer Alicia Chamaillé

40. Nourish’d Observatory

Nourish'd Observatory Hottest New Restaurants

Health-food lovers are no strangers to Nourish’d – the neat little juicery and café on Kloof Street where vegan smoothies, bowls and light meals abound. So when they opened a sister venue in Observatory, creatives, students, travellers and professionals who work and live nearby were chuffed.
The menu is not a carbon copy of Kloof Street’s. Here you’ll also find warm rainbow bowls, oat breakfasts, and hearty soups. What’s more, says chef and manager Katie Beard, there’s a Nourish’d Harvest Table that changes daily: four plant-based dishes – or, as she puts it, “a beautiful bounty of rainbow goodness” – served on a plate.
So far, the most popular dishes at Nourish’d Obs are the Moonshine Bowl (avocado, falafel, hummus, kimchi, spiral carrots and zucchini, baby spinach, rocket, kale, microgreens, raw almonds, and ginger-and-lemon olive oil drizzle) and shmooshy avo toast on sourdough.
The shots There’s a host of health shots on offer that highlights what’s best for which niggles. Feeling fluey and muggy? The Hot Shot (ginger, lime, turmeric and black pepper) is the answer. Too much wine last night? The Black Grit (activated charcoal, apple and lemon) is the ticket.
Good to know In the pipeline are warm elixirs, as well as cleanses and an online product range.
Opened 12 April 2018
Contact 063 648 1040
Opening times Monday – Friday, 7am – 4pm
Saturday, 9am – 2pm
Where to find it 186 Lower Main Road, Observatory
Reviewer Riekie Human

You might be interested in the restaurants that have previously appeared on this list (that are still hot, but not brand-spanking new):

Foxcroft
La Tête
Thali
The Shortmarket Club
Seabreeze Fish and Shell
Chefs Warehouse at Beau Constantia
Hokey Poké
The Granary Cafe at the Silo Hotel
Kleinskys  
The Stack
Shio
House of H
Three Wise Monkeys
The Mess
Mink & Trout
95 on Morgenster
Scheckter’s Raw
Bouchon Bistro
Stacked Diner
Mulberry & Prince
The Sorrows
Hail Pizza
Schoon
Villa 47’s Pierino Penati 
La Petite Colombe

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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: 10 September 2018

Add new comment

13 Responses to “The 40 Hottest New Restaurants in Cape Town 2018”

  1. Elizabeth

    Would be great if you could update this list with a price range for each restaurant.

    Reply
  2. Hennie

    How about somerset west Fresh taste bistro opened 4 june 2018.

    Reply
  3. Luke de Kock

    Hi There,

    Have you heard of The Skotnes Restaurant at Norval Foundation? Truly amazing local fare in a art museum and sculpture garden!

    Reply
  4. Wendy Robinson

    I am looking for an upmarket business lunch with outstanding food and atmosphere and service. No budget. A sea view would be a plus but not necessary. It must be near the city centre. These are out of towners who we need to wow.

    Reply
  5. Natasha Prime-Stagler

    Hi – you guys should feature Ceviche at Corner Store in Town, by Silwood trained chef Dylan Norton

    Ceviche recipes vary, so there’s always a surprise and new recipe to look forward to!

    Reply
  6. Jess Green

    Giulios cafe in Loop!hot breakfast and lunch spot now open for dinners Thursday and Fridays:)not to be missed!

    Reply
  7. Conny

    Our local favourite. Lime Tree Cafe in Bergvliet. Something for everyone including me…a vegetarian.

    Reply
  8. Rael

    You don’t want to ever miss out on Lime Tree Cafe. Consistently rated 5*

    Reply
  9. Cindy Truscott

    A wonderful selection of fascinating food at fantastic venues.

    Reply
  10. Tanya Steyn

    Please send news on hottest and newest in CPT.

    Reply
  11. Wynoma Stockenstroom

    Please send your newsletter regularly

    Reply