Opened in 2006 by English ex-pat Ed Saunders and his then-partner JD Haasbroek, Fork Restaurant’s claim to fame is that it was one of the first tapas spots in the city – and a mighty good one at that!
In an oversaturated and highly competitive foodscape, such as Cape Town’s, it’s common to see popular favourites come and go. So when an eatery surpasses the decade benchmark, you know it’s one worth adding to your bucket list.
When Fork first opened on Long Street, the term tapas was a near-foreign concept. The restaurant’s biggest challenge was educating diners on the newly imported cuisine, convincing South Africans that you don’t have to eat one big plate of food in one sitting, but that you can have multiple smaller plates, making a night of it, and still leave, feeling satisfied. Sharing is just part of the fun – and a way to abate food envy!
Serving diverse range of pinchos (small sharing plates), everything on Fork’s menu can be eaten with – you guessed it – a fork, which is indeed perfect for sharing. Fork has earned its keep by churning out consistently good fare for 13 years – on Cape Town’s up-and-coming foodie strip, no less.
Unlike the newer tapas offerings, Fork prides itself in providing diners (most of who are decade-long regulars), value for money without compromising on quality and flavour. The servings are generous, packing a massive punch. And, to make ordering easy, the menu is divided into priced sections ranging between R70 and R85.
The contemporary-cool interior matches the edginess of the food offering. The vibe is laidback and casual, yet ever-buzzing, perfect for an after-work cocktail or a chilled glass of vino – over a few shared plates.
Lick the spoon
Located on the same premises but with a decidedly different feel, Spoon is the sister concept of Fork, where everything on the dedicated menu is meant to be eaten with a spoon. Dishes are presented simply but elegantly, and with the same level of attention paid to the flavours and textures as the plates at Fork.
We devoured the Parmesan risotto, which was cooked to perfection (a tricky one to get right!) and not shy with cheese, and the slow braised ostrich goulash with spaetzle and a tomato paprika sauce.
Bowls range between R70 and R80.
For those who haven’t visited in a while, we highly recommend you return. And if you’ve never been…well, what are you waiting for?
Opening times Monday – Saturday, 12pm – 11pm