Allow me to let you in on a little secret: I’m a hopeless romantic. I love date nights with my boyfriend not only because it’s the perfect excuse to get all dressed up, but also because I get to spend a romantic evening filled with good food and wine with my special person.
The problem I have with date night, though, is deciding on a place to go. Can you relate? There are so many intimate restaurants in Cape Town to choose from! To help you locate the best ones, which boast not only a lovely romantic ambience but also a fine wine list and gourmet menu, I’ve put together this short guide.
#1: La Mouette
Located in an enchanting Tudor Revival-style house, this spot will have you feeling like you’re falling in love during Victorian Times. The outside foundation is dramatically romantic, while the interior is flush with fine old fireplaces, lead-paned windows and multiple elegant dining rooms. It’s always busy, leading to an infectiously cheerful vibe. Try out the six-course tasting menu (R495 per person with wines or R295 without), or order up a few things off the à la carte menu such as the Kingklip (R170) or the Namibian Lamb (R180).
78 REGENT ROAD, SEA POINT
#2: 5 Rooms
This wonderfully intimate restaurant situated in the historic Alphen Hotel exudes dramatic, old-world romance. Think dark woods and plush crimson and violet chairs, all lit by candles and gilded lampshades. Its location, in the heart of the Constantia Winelands, also means an extensive wine list to complement their delicious fare, which includes dishes like Rib Eye Steak (R160), Pan-Seared Norwegian Salmon (R190) and Chocolate Peanut Butter Fondant (R70). They also serve up the perfect dry martini (R50).
ALPHEN BOUTQIUE HOTEL, ALPHEN DRIVE, CONSTANTIA
This stylish restaurant is a stalwart on our city’s dining scene. It’s a go-to venue for special occasions like birthdays, proposals and anniversaries. The sparkling chandeliers, scarlet walls and live jazz band make for a truly memorable evening – the kind where you hit the dancefloor to work off the decadent dishes they have on offer! Their shellfish, line fish and grills are sublime, as are there desserts. You’ve got to try the Lobster Thermidore (R390) and the Hot Malva Pudding (R56)!
57A SOMERSET ROAD, GREEN POINT
The historic Cape Dutch building that’s home to Kitima is simply stunning, with a warm atmosphere that’s very much cosy and intimate. There’s something for everyone at this restaurant – dim sum, sushi, roti, noodles, stir-fries, curries and other delectable Asian dishes. Highlights are the Tempura Prawns (R130), Aromatic Crispy Duck (R160) and Oxtail Rendang (R165). The Cheese Spring Rolls (R50) are pretty tempting, too! They also have a very extensive wine list, all of my fellow wine-lovers will be glad to know.
140 MAIN ROAD, HOUT BAY
#5: Pot Luck Club & Gallery
Even if its sister restaurant, the infamous Test Kitchen, is a lot more formal, I much prefer the Pot Luck Club for a date night. Their casual, small-plates menu and industrial-chic décor are much more laidback, but no less stylish! The setting, atop a silo, means you can take in panoramic views of the city, making it a very romantic perch at sunset. Signature dishes include the Crispy Pot Luck Pig Tails (R60), Pot Luck Club Fish Tacos (R50) and 5-Spiced Glazed Pork Belly (R80). They also mix up some very tasty cocktails!
6 THE SILO, OLD BISCUIT MILL, 373-375 ALBERT ROAD, WOODSTOCK