dear me

At Dear Me the focus is on delicious unpretentious food made with love and respect. The menu stresses respect for small producers, ethical food, seasonal ingredients and even dietary needs. One of the things that makes it unique is that the menu changes daily, with each day’s menu available online.

This all-day brasserie, deli and event space is situated in a lovingly-restored, 181-year old building in Longmarket Street and is open Monday to Friday from 7am until 3pm for breakfast and lunch, and for a 3 or 5-course food and wine pairing on Thursday evenings, for which booking is essential.

DEAR ME
021 422 4920
165 Longmarket Street, Cape Town
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très delicious

Myano Guguletho is studying French by correspondence in Cape Town. But he says he benefits the most from the course when he gets to practise his French in conversation.

“I’m so lucky,” says Guguletho, “because just downstairs from my apartment is le COCO a French sandwich bar where the chefs are all French speaking; so every day I get to speak the language. Chef Blanche not only makes great sandwiches, she says if I want to learn her language quickly she will only speak to me in French. At first I had to ask her to speak very slowly and repeat everything, but now I can understand almost everything that I’m eating!”

With the global recession still making its presence felt students find eating in the CBDexpensive and le COCO, situated just outside the Picbell Parkade Mall in Strand Street is surrounded by colleges and other learning centres.

Co-owner of le COCO, Deborah Corner says, “We identified a few niche markets in the CBD; the student, the busy office exec and the visitor to Cape Town who prefer a healthy alternative, and who appreciate freshly-made sandwiches at a reasonable price. Although we offer a free delivery service, many of our customers like to stretch their legs, take a little exercise and some even like to practise a little French with our Chefs!”

le COCO’s décor, infused with the ambience of a Parisian café is stylish, chique and themed in black and white. However, it’s the promise of freshly baked baguettes and croissants, along with the irresistible aroma of coffee that actually draws the ever increasing stream of loyal customers through the door.

Chef Blanche observes “Our customers are from many different cultures and their tastes vary a lot. I love speaking to our customers in French. I would say le COCO’s most popular sandwich is le dejeuner 1 (pronounced day-je-nay, which literally means ‘lunch’ in French): chicken, cheese and avocado pear, crisp lettuce, ripe tomato and handmade French mayonnaise, and whether it’s served on a French Baguette, a croissant, a ciabatta or a pumpkin seed roll it’s the same price.

But we have many customers, whether they are students, or business executives, who love creating their own individual sandwiches by combining interesting tastes. One customer’s signature sandwich is the le poulet (pronounced poo-lay, which means ‘chicken’) with my secret chilli sauce on a chocolate croissant – it is really quite delicious.

The freshest, seasonal ingredients on a freshly-baked baguette with a French lesson on the side right here in the Mother City. Délicieux!

le COCO
021 820 4686 (neotel)
Shop 18 Picbel Parkade Mall – Strand St entrance

thursday and friday specials at valora

Earlier this year Michael Mouneimne traded the Camps Bay’s Golden Strip (where he was at the helm of Café Caprice for nine years for nine years) for the hustle and bustle of the Mother City, with the idea of presenting a “fine” dining experience at affordable prices in a warm friendly environment. Valora’s Mediterranean-inspired menu is full of personality and creativity and is the perfect place for morning coffee, a business lunch, after work drinks or a relaxing dinner.

Valora is running two fantastic specials at the moment, making it the place to be on Thursdays and Fridays.

On Thursdays you enjoy 50% off all pizza and pasta, whilst Friday’s 30% discount on cocktails means you can relax and enjoy Happy Hour all night long.

VALORA CAFÉ • RESTAURANT • BAR
021 426 1001
Shop 70, cnr Loop & Hout Streets
Cape Town

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lunch and cocktail specials at café extrablatt

Café Extrablatt’s menu really is quite diverse, from American diner-inspired burgers, Italian pizza and pasta, and German sausage and schnitzels. It also includes a few things one doesn’t often find on other menus in South Africa, like baked potatoes with a variety of toppings, or creating your own snack platter from items such as risotto balls, spring rolls, chicken strips, calamari and more. Also just launched – a range of delicious-sounding wraps.

Breakfast is an event. From Monday to Saturday their all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet included freshly baked rolls, croissants, yoghurt, milk, cereal, salads, jams, cheese, meats, bacon, eggs, fresh fruit salad and more is available from 8am to noon, and at R79-95 it’s easily affordable. Even better, children up to age 10 pay half price. On Sundays and public holidays the price goes up by R20 but there are lots of extras and more time in which to enjoy them. Again, children up to age 10 pay half.

Besides their affordable prices, Café Extrablatt is also offers a number of specials, one of which is a Monday to Friday Lunch special (which changes daily) for R39-95. The other is a Wednesday to Friday Happy Hour (from 5pm to 8pm) when selected cocktails and mocktails are R30 and R25 respectively.

And just in time for the hot months ahead, their sinfully delicious ice cream menufeatures original, Italian-style gelato scoops, milkshakes, smoothies and frappes in a range of flavours!

Something for everyone, including ample parking across the road if you go by car and the MyCiTi bus if you don’t.

CAFÉ EXTRABLATT
087 625 0463
Exhibition Building
79 Main Road, Green Point

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clarke’s bar & dining room re-opens

While it’s certainly been enjoying rave reviews there is definitely more to Clarke’s than just the burger.

The very best quality ingredients transform simple American Diner-inspired dishes into mouthwatering classics. If you’re not in the mood for a burger (and yes, it is good), some well-known choices include a Pulled Pork Sub or Reuben Sandwich, a Ceasar or Cobb salad, Huevos Ranchero or Toasted Raisin and Pecan Bread with whipped maple butter, and even perennial favourites like Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese and Mac & Cheese.

If you have room for dessert you can try either the Sweet Pie of the Day (served with cream or ice cream) or three scoops of The Creamery’s amazing ice cream, which is made with ingredients sourced from local farms and grown as ethically as possible. Guilt-free indulgence at its best.

Opening hours are:
Monday & Tuesday – 7am to 6pm
Wednesday, Thursday & Friday – 7am till late
Saturday – 8am to 3pm

CLARKE’S BAR & DINING ROOM
021 424 7648
133 Bree Street, Cape Town

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Images: all images by Alexia Webster, reproduced with permission.

south china dim sum bar

We first tasted their sublime Asian street food at the City Bowl Market. The only problem was that we had to wait an entire week until our next dim sum fix. Thankfully we can now enjoy Edmund Hung and Clinton Ho-Wing’s incredible street food offering whenever we like at their new spot, South China Dim Sum Bar, on Long Street.

The menu changes on a regular basis and makes the most of fresh, local ingredients. Think wontons, steamed buns, pot stickers and noodle dishes. The interior is simple and uncluttered with wooden crates for seating, weathered-looking walls and small tables made of recycled wood and steel. And because no respecting Chinese street food joint is complete without some form of Bruce Lee memorabilia, they’ve put up a collection of posters of the kung-fu legend. You want to visit this spot chop-chop.

Bring your own wine or beer. No corkage.

Find South China Dim Sum Bar at:

289 Long Street
Dinner Tue-Sun 6pm ’till late.
Lunch 12 – 3pm. Wed – Fri.

Or at the Hope St. Market on Saturdays during the day.

South China Dim Sum Bar on Facebook

Words and images: Cindy Taylor

memorable fare at hemelhuijs

Hemelhuijs, which opened in October 2010, is an intimate oasis in the heart of the city where Jacques Erasmus and the Hemelhuijs team use the best ingredients and “interweave the flavours of childhood memories and that of the exotic” to serve up memorable dishes throughout the day.

For breakfast you’ll be hard pressed to choose between dishes like toasted walnut pancake with sugar roasted stone fruit and bacon bits, and an open omelette with plump farm figs, home made boursin cheese and crispy proscuitto, especially when the heady aroma of freshly-baked mosbolletjies still linger. Crispy skin duck on a fig carpaccio with tender beetroot and walnut praline; juicy slices of seared fillet on a lightly toasted ciabatta slice; light pan-fried, sesame crusted prawns with a zesty fresh chilli, ginger and sweet soya dressing; and risotto with toasted walnuts, honey roasted butternut, crispy proscuitto and a homemade grapefruit marmalade are just a few of the delectable lunch choices.

February, though, is all about figs. Beef on a freshly baked ciabatta, farm figs and a herbed cream cheese;
baby spinach, rocket, feta, fresh figs and walnuts, all drizzled with home made balsamic dressing; and open omelette with plump farm figs, home made boursin cheese and crispy proscuitto are just three of the mouthwatering dishes so far.

For the less hungry, Hemelhuijs has a selection of divine pastries, ideal to enjoy with their custom blended coffee.

Regular updates highlighting delectable new dishes as well as twists on old favourites can be seen on their Facebook page.

Hours:
Mondays – Fridays: 9am to 4pm
Saturdays: 9am to 3pm
Wednesday evenings: 7pm to 10pm

HEMELHUIJS
021 418 2042
71 Waterkant Street
Cape Town

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a healthy start to the day with café caprice’s summer shakedown breakfast menu

As much as some of us would like to pretend caffeine deserves a food group of its own, a cup of coffee (no matter how good) does not a breakfast make. Café Caprice’s Summer Shake Down Menu offers a delicious, healthy way to start the day.

Choose from:

Cinnamon Toasted Oats
Cinnamon toasted oats and nuts on top of freshly stoned fruit, topped with low fat Bulgarian yoghurt.

Super Salmon & Scrambled Eggs
100% Toasted rye topped with smoked salmon and scrambled free range eggs, served with roasted tomato.

Toast on the Run
Three slices of toast, tomato and cucumber, served with Peck’s Anchovette.

Avo & Egg Slice
One slice of 100% toasted rye topped with fresh avocado, scrambled free range eggs and roasted tomato.

Poached on Rye
Two poached free range eggs on 100% toasted rye bread, served with roasted tomato.

Excellent coffee is an ideal accompaniment!

CAFÉ CAPRICE
021 438 8315
37 Victoria Road,
Camps Bay
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exciting developments at dear me

The popular 3- and 5-course menus with a wine-pairing option that Dear Me used to host weekly have been replaced with brasserie style, less formal, a la carte dinners on Thursdays from 6:30pm in the downstairs restaurant.

While there will still be a suggested wine per meal the new menus will include options per item to make it flexible for specific nutrition needs, e.g. lactose-free, wheat/gluten-free, starch-free, low-fat etc options. There are plans to host these dinners twice a week, on Wednesdays and Thursday, hopefully from this month.

If you’d like to host an event the magnificent White Room is the perfect spot for anything from a conference (facilities are available) with custom made canapes, breakfast or lunch snacks, to private dinners, intimate weddings and parties. The White Room can seat 40 for a sit down dinner and more for a canape/cocktail function.

For further information email Dear Me at >mailto:info@dearme.co.za> or Ronel@dearme.co.za

DEAR ME
021 422 4920
165 Longmarket Street
Cape Town
Website