One of Cape Town’s most famous neighbourhoods, the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront has plenty to offer, from shopping and culture to entertainment and dining – and it has really upped its culinary game in recent years, offering something for every taste and budget.
PIER and The Waterside
One of South Africa’s most acclaimed chefs, Scot Kirton has turned La Colombe into the flagship of a steadily expanding stable of gourmet destinations in Cape Town and the Cape Winelands – the latest additions to which are PIER and The Waterside. Located on different floors of the same building, with splendid waterside-views, PIER offers a multi-course, theatrical fine-dining dining experience, while The Waterside menu is slightly more relaxed, with a shorter four-course à la carte menu.
Granary Café at The Silo Hotel
Executive chef Veronica Canha-Hibbert turns seasonal, local ingredients into highly approachable, uncomplicated dishes at The Silo Hotel’s main restaurant. Lunch or dinner here is worth it for the design as much as for the food – the hotel’s famous pillow-shaped windows never fail to impress. Sunday brunch is another drawcard, as are pre-dinner drinks on the rooftop – with jaw-dropping views across the Waterfront and CBD.
Willoughby & Co
Never judge a book by its cover. Willoughby’s suspect location in the middle of a busy shopping mall at the V&A Waterfront might not entice you to stop and peruse the menu – but the weekend queues around the block tell a different story. Locals and visitors in-the-know rate this Cape Town institution for its consistently excellent, fresher-than-fresh seafood – the sushi in particular has a loyal following, with the 4×4 selection of rolls a perennial favourite among sushi connoisseurs.
Grand Africa Café & Beach
Lunch or dinner here is indeed a grand affair – the waterside restaurant comprises several bars and restaurants. Whichever you choose, make it al fresco – the man-made beach makes for picture-perfect feet-in-the-sand dining. Menu-wise, seafood takes on a starring role, with refined seafood platters the order of the day; alternatively, opt for pizza, pasta, or a Wagyu burger. Wash it all down with a cocktail (or two or three), and soak up the beach-style party atmosphere.
Sushi master Nobu Matsuhisa’s Cape Town outpost – the only one on the African continent – resides within the elegant walls of the One&Only hotel. Expect masterfully interpreted Japanese-Peruvian flavours, from sushi and sashimi to hot delicacies – including the Michelin-starred chef’s famous black cod miso. To experience the full range of dishes, put your trust in the hands of the chefs and order one of the Omakase experiences (ideally with matching sake pairing). On a warm summer day, the outside terrace is the place to be.
For a unique dining experience, head to Mmabatho Molefe’s tiny 10-seater eatery at food incubator Makers Landing at the V&A Waterfront, which recently won African Restaurant of the Year at the 4th annual Luxe Restaurant Awards. The modern Zulu-inspired restaurant celebrate Nguni cuisine and South African ingredients with a seven-course menu based on the chef’s childhood memories. Dishes champion nose-to-tail eating – think corned beef tongue with tomato puree, and chicken neck mousse tartlet.