Entries tagged with “15 on Orange”.


Fine Brandy Fusion This Is Brandy Whale Cottage PortfolioOn Thursday evening my friend Bettie Coetzee-Lambrecht and I attended Fine Brandy Fusion at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, having been invited by Manley Communications.   Fine Brandy Fusion is a fine showcase for the local brandy industry, the Bisquit cognac with South African links being our highlight.

At the registration desk we received a goody bag, and a booklet of coupons, to allow us to taste brandy cocktails and taste some of the 50 fine brandies neat.  Immediately on entering we passed a smallish restaurant, catered by the Convention Centre kitchen.  The food quality of the Convention Centre has been poor at every exhibition attended in the past, but picked up when its new Chef Warwick Thomas arrived a year ago, reaching a new low at World Travel Market Africa last month.  I was immediately sceptical, but the food options which were displayed in a refrigerated unit looked better (just from the plating) than I have ever seen there before.   We received two food couponsFine Brandy Fusion Food Whale Cottage Portfolio each, which Bettie used for linefish and I ordered tasty calamari rings, Bettie saying that it would be important to line our tummies for the brandy tasting to come.  We both ordered a cheese platter as well.  The service was excellent and professional, and the prices very reasonable at about R50 each.  We felt severely under-dressed when a fashionista wearing fur and her partner shared our table! (more…)

The sixth Taste of Cape Town, to be held at the Green Point Cricket Club from today until Sunday, promises to be a feast of food and beverages, prepared by some of the Cape’s leading chefs, and offered for tasting by top wine estates and beverage houses.

A pop-up restaurant will feature some of our region’s best chefs, hosted by a different chef each day:

*   Chef Luke Dale-Roberts, representing The Pot Luck Club, offering Miso-glazed short rib with kimchi, pork belly with XO and red cabbage slaw, and Thai-style prawns with Tom Yum butter on Friday.

*   Chef Bruce Robertson, past owner of award-winning The Showroom, and now running The Boathouse from his home in Scarborough, will dish up snot vis (photograph) and sea cucumber, ‘Viss ‘n Tjips’, and Lucky Star pie on Saturday.

*   Chef Scot Kirton of La Colombe will offer Lemon verbena cured trout, ostrich tataki, and rose and coconut pannacotta on Thursday.

*   Chef Tanja Kruger of Makaron Restaurant, and member of the SA Culinary team, will serve Nigiri sustainable fish, smoked lamb belly, and a rum, caramel and banana dessert on Sunday.

Eleven restaurant stands will offer food to taste, in exchange for crowns (R5 per crown, and dish prices range from 4 – 8 crowns each, as a means of payment:

*   Azure Restaurant at the Twelve Apostles hotel, with Chef Henrico Grobbelaar at the helm, serving duck liver cream, Chalmar beef fillet, and Bea Tollman’s rice pudding

*   96 Winery Road in Stellenbosch, led by Chef Natasha Wray, serving crispy pork belly strips, line fish Nobu style, and parmesan and chorizo risotto

*   De Grendel Restaurant, which opened a year ago, with Chef Ian Bergh, serving duck and risotto, braised beef, and quail.

*   Fyndraai Restaurant at Solms-Delta, with Chef Shaun Schoeman, offering Tiger prwan and calamari breyani, Karoo ‘lamsoutribbetjie‘, and venison wild rosemary pie

*   Signal Restaurant at the Cape Grace, with Chef Malika van Reenen, serving prawn salad, beef short rib, and pear dessert

*   Savour at 15 on Orange, headed by Chef Sanel Esterhuyse, offering Norwegian salmon and avocado tartare (photograph), quail curry, and seared scallops

*   Jewel of India, now located in Bo-Kaap, with Chef Dayanand Shankar Poojary, serving Chicken Tikka, Paneer Makhani, and Madras fish curry

*   Beefcakes Burger Bar, based in Green Point, with Chef Wonderful Ndhlovu offering poppers, gourmet ostrich burge, and chocolate brownie.

*   Dash Restaurant at the Queen Victoria Hotel in the V&A Waterfront, with Chef Craig Paterson, serving fish rillettes, braised lamb breast, and ‘Go Bananas’ dessert

*   The Brasserie (sister restaurant to Societi Bistro) with Chef Stefan Marais, offering West Coast mussels, Brasserie Scotch egg, and French onion soup

*   Il Leone Mastrantonio with Chef Daniel Toledo, serving Linguine ai Gamberetti (prawns), flash-fried calamari, and coffee-flavoured panacotta.

Top chefs will do demonstrations in the Pick ‘n Pay Chef’s Theatre, while the Pick ‘n Pay Wine and Canapé Experience will teach Festival goers how to pair wines and canapés. Lindt’s Master Chocolatiers will demonstrate making Lindor truffles and pralines and chocolate sculpturing, with their Excellence and Creation ranges available for sale.   A special focus on Thai foods will be offered via cooking demonstrations by Thai chefs, organised by the Royal Thai Embassy.  A Food Market will not only offer artisanal foods for sale, but also beverages such as the new award-winning Bains Cape Mountain whisky from Wellington, the best single grain whisky in the world, as well as Fairtrade wines.

The Taste of Cape Town is one of 18 Taste festivals hosted around the world.  Taste of Durban will be held in July and Taste of Joburg in September.  Taste of Cape Town is environmentally friendly, with Interwaste recycling at the festival, and biodegradable eating utensils and bowls made by Green Home Products will be used.

POSTSCRIPT 12/4: Parking is in short supply, and traffic cops are all around the venue, to frighten anyone off parking anywhere else except inside the Cape Town Stadium, at a reasonable charge of R20.  The evening was wonderful, mild weather wise, lots of attendees but it never felt crowded.  The pop-up restaurant (Pot Luck Club this evening, but without Luke Dale-Roberts, as advertised on the program) had the longest queue, so one should go there first.  Tweeting is difficult, almost impossible from the festival, given the network overload.  Signal Restaurant of the Cape Grace hotel was the ‘best dressed’ restaurant, in giving one a feel of its real counterpart.  It is difficult to present one’s dishes under such trying conditions, and there can be little talk of ‘plating’ on a small recycled plate, but the best looking dish was Savour’s Norwegian salmon and avocado tartare with parmesan galette, Ikura caviar, soy-lime broth (this detracted from the dish) and micro-herbs (right).  The best tasting dish was the Twelve Apostles’ Azure starter of Duck liver cream, pickled red apple, and lentil leek mignonette (left).  I enjoyed sitting at the tables spread around the grounds, just chatting about the dishes and the restaurants they came from.  There are a lot of Capetonians interested in our Cape Town restaurants.  I heard a lot of Afrikaans spoken, and the PR representative Errieda du Toit told me that Afrikaans media had covered the festival for the first time. Lindt impressed with its shop and demonstration area, the making of pralines and Lindor being demonstrated. One should go here at the beginning or end, as it became very full.

Taste of Cape Town, 11 and 12 April 18h30 – 22h30, 13 April 13h00 – 17h00 and 18h30 – 22h30, 14 April 12h00 – 17h00,  www.tasteofcapetown.com Twitter: @Taste  Taste Fest app available for free for Apple, Blackberry, and Android devices.  R80 entrance and tasting glass, R180 includes R100 tasting crowns.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage

A year ago we first conducted a survey of top-end hotel rates in Cape Town.  We repeated the survey in August 2011, and in November 2011, to track hotel pricing trends. Ellerman House has re-established itself as the most expensive Cape Town hotel, starting at R 4590 per room, and the Peninsula All Suite Hotel remains the least expensive 5-star hotel, at R1200 per room, the same rate as November 2011 and lower than a year ago.  The hotels in Cape Town appear more confident about the coming winter season, judging by their pricing policy, only half of them having decreased their rates relative to the past summer.

The survey found that the average rate of the sixteen 5-star Cape Town hotels surveyed is R 2780 per room, just under R1400 per person, an average decrease by 23% relative to the November 2011 rates.   Across all 29 hotels surveyed, the average rate per room is R 2297, or just over R 1100 per person, 21% lower on average than in November. The most expensive Presidential Suite is at the One & Only Cape Town, at R58541 per day, a rate which has not changed since November.  Interesting is that larger top-end suites seem to have seen rate increases, while the standard rooms are more likely to be discounted.

Once again it was interesting to hear how the calls were handled, most hotel reservation departments asking careful questions, to identify if the caller was a travel agent/tour operator or a corporate caller, the questioning being very specific in this regard. Holders of a Protea Hotel Prokard would have had different rates quoted.  Few hotels called had a rate sheet from which to quote immediately, having to access their computer for the ‘best available rate’ information, costing time, one hotel putting the call on hold to piped music while they did their rate calculations.  The poor quality of the call handling and quoting by the hotel Reservations departments must be a concern for their bosses, quoting odd rates (i.e. not rounded off) very quickly, making it difficult to understand and record them accurately; interrupting while one was still speaking; inability to understand and hear the request, having to repeat the dates, and the number of persons;  the question ‘group or individual’ is asked bluntly, without explanation; not all hotels quote rates with breakfast included, despite being asked for this rate (Protea Hotels quote room only, and seem surprised when asked to add the breakfast rate); The Protea Hotel group quotes day by day rates, and the reservations staff struggle to quote an average rate, making it tedious to obtain quotes from them, as they have to quote the average rate and then add the breakfast rate. The Portswood/Commodore Hotels, Bay Hotel/Village & Life, and Newmark Hotels group have the same switchboard for different hotels, and even if one dials the specific hotel selected, one is asked which hotel one wants to book at!  For hoteliers it must be frightening to hear that not one of the 29 hotels called had a call to action, in encouraging one to make a booking, given that Cape Town has the best hotels in Africa.

Half the hotels have decreased their rates since November 2011, now quoting winter rates.  However, Steenberg Hotel increased its rate from November 2011, by 4%.  Interesting is the 36 % rate increase in the past five months for the African Pride Hotels 15 on Orange and Crystal Towers Hotel & Spa.  The Ambassador Hotel has increased its rate by 27 % since November 2011.  The Protea Hotel Breakwater Lodge has been known for its competitive rates, but has increased them by 24 % for winter, and is no longer the cheapest hotel of those surveyed.      The largest rate decreases since November 2011 were by the V&A Hotel (45%),  Dock House (37%), and the Cape Royale Luxury Hotel (35%).  The rate of the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice increased by a dramatic 107% relative to last winter!  The Commodore Hotel (61%) and Portswood Hotel (45%) also increased their winter rates strongly. Interesting is that the Steenberg Hotel, voted the best hotel in Africa by Conde Nast Traveler readers, ranks 4th on price now,  having ranked at 10th position a mere five months ago.  The Protea Hotel-operated properties generally are at the lower end of the price ranking, being more attractively priced to fill their beds.

The rates were checked telephonically yesterday for today, for the next three days, i.e. 3 – 6 May per room for 2 adults sharing and inclusive of Breakfast per day, so as to compare the rates fairly . We added breakfast to the rates where these were quoted separately.   We have ranked the hotel rates from most to least expensive, and reflect the rate change on the lowest priced room relative to our survey for May 2011 in brackets:

Ellerman House, 5 star, R4590 – R14680. (The 3-room villa was offered at R45441 and the 5-room villa at R68000). Tel (021) 430-3200 (8% rate decrease)

Cape Grace Hotel, 5 star, R4555.10 – R15388 for the penthouse, Tel (021) 410-7100 (1% increase)

Mount Nelson Hotel, 5 star, R3730 – R11290. Tel (021) 483-1000 (24% rate increase)

Steenberg Hotel, 5 star, R3580– R14580. Tel (021) 713-2222 (Not included in May 2011)

One & Only Cape Town, 5 star, R3490 – R58541 for the Presidential Suite.  The non-South African resident rate starts at R4856 Tel (021) 431-5888 (10% rate decrease)

15 on Orange Hotel, 5 star, R2750 – R5370 for the one-bedroom penthouse, Tel (021) 469-8000 (1 % rate decrease)

Crystal Towers Hotel & Spa, 5 star, R2650 – R3750.  Tel (021) 525-3888 (25% rate increase)

Commodore Hotel, 4 star, R2580 – R8040.  Tel (021) 415-1000 (61% rate increase)

The Westin Cape Town, 5 star, R2410 – R40000 for Presidential Suite. Tel (021) 412-9999 (19 % rate decrease)

Dock House, 5 star, R 2396 – R3115. Tel (021) 421-9334 (37% rate decrease)

Table Bay Hotel, 5 star, R2360 – R4760 for South African residents, R2840 – R6050 for non-South Africans. Tel (021) 406-5000 (25% rate decrease)

Twelve Apostles Hotel, 5 star, R2325 – R4565 for Bed & Breakfast, 3-course dinner, movie and popcorn, only for South African residents.  Non-South Africans pay R4165 – R8845 per room and breakfast.  Tel (021) 437-9000 (19% rate decrease)

Portswood Hotel, 4 star, R 2320 – R 3960.  Tel (021) 415-1000 (45% rate increase)

Cape Royale Luxury Hotel, 5 star, R2300 – R10000 for the Presidential Suite.  Tel (021) 430-0500 (35% rate decrease)

The Taj Hotel, 5 star, R2300 – R40000 for Presidential Suite. Tel (021) 819-2000 (5% rate increase)

Queen Victoria Hotel, not graded yet but seeking 5 stars, R2028 – R15000, Tel (021) 418-1466 (8% rate increase)

Bay Hotel, 5 star, R2000- R2800.  Tel (021) 438-4444 (25% rate increase)

Protea Fire & Ice Hotel, 3 star,  R1860 – R2110, Tel (021) 488-2555 (107% rate increase!)

Cullinan Hotel, 5 star, R1850  – R5159.  Tel (021) 415-4000 (14% rate decrease)

Victoria Junction Hotel, 4 star, R 1850 – R 2150 Tel (021) 418-1234 (10% rate increase)

V & A Hotel, 4 star, R1720 – R2170 . Tel (021) 415-1000 (45% rate decrease)

Ambassador Hotel, 4 star, R1590 – R2020. Tel (021) 439-6176 (17% rate decrease)

Winchester Mansions Hotel, 4 star, R1550 – R3550.  Tel (021) 434-2351 (5 % rate increase)

Southern Sun Waterfront Hotel, 4 star, R1550 – R3220. Tel (021) 409-4000 (11 % rate decrease).

Protea Hotel Breakwater Lodge, no star grading, R1445 standard room, R1690 business suite. Tel (021) 406-1911 (12% rate increase).

President Hotel, 4 star, R1306 – R1723. Tel (021) 434-8111 (11% rate decrease)

Peninsula All Suite Hotel, 5 star, R1200 – R3490.  Tel (021) 430-7777 (24% rate decrease)

Vineyard Hotel, 4 star, R1165 – R4270. Tel (021) 657-4500. (Not included in May 2011)

Cape Sun Hotel, 4 star, R1160 – R5920 for Presidential Suite.  Tel (021) 488-5100 (23% rate decrease).

POSTSCRIPT 4/5: Two Cape Town hotels, the Alphen Boutique Hotel (not yet included in this survey) and the Queen Victoria Hotel, are the only two South African hotels on the Conde Nast Traveler Hot List of Best New Hotels 2012.  Frommers.com has selected Steenberg Hotel in its Top 12 ‘Best Vineyards Inns & Hotels around the World’, the only South African hotel on the list.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage

It was a shock to the hospitality industry to hear last year that the Alphen Hotel had closed down in Constantia, one of Cape Town’s oldest hotels, and even more so that restaurateur Paul Kovensky had taken over the property and had created a magical transformation of a historical building, re-opening the hotel in December with two new restaurants. La Belle Café and Bakery serves a beautiful selection of pastries, and has become a popular meeting place for breakfast, lunch, and drinks in the Southern Suburbs.

One can see the popularity of the rejuvenated Alphen Hotel from the mass of cars on the grounds, something one never saw before.  The original entrance has been closed, to create more parking.  I asked a staff member where La Belle was, as there is no branding visible for the restaurants, and he pointed me to ‘La Bella’, not knowing its correct name.  The staff are all new, and have no knowledge of the history of the building, and what the La Belle room was used for before.   It is a large room seating 60 inside, with an open thatched roof giving it the look and feel of a barn, dominated by a display counter almost the length of the room, containing the most beautiful selection of pastries, the breads being less easy to see in the shelving behind the counter.  There are individual tables inside, and one long shared table, which appeared to become the waiting table, with everyone wanting to sit outside on the beautiful day yesterday. There are few decor touches inside, with two large mirrors on one wall, and a beautifully written blackboard, with the bread range (R15 – R25), milkshakes (R30), and hot chocolates (R20 – R30).  There are delectable looking cheese cakes, chocolate tortes, coconut layer cakes, orange vanilla sponge cakes, carrot cakes, and smaller summer fruit tarts, passion fruit meringue tarts, blueberry pies, macaroons, chocolate cupcakes, berry frangipane, red velvet cupcakes, and nut tarts, displayed with potted herbs.  The small tarts are larger than one normally sees, and cost about R30. One cannot buy a cake without pre-ordering.  Pastry Chef Inge le Roux studied at the SA Chef’s Academy, and has worked at the Table Bay Hotel, Singita, 15 on Orange, and The Round House. Charl Coetzee is the La Belle chef. Cappuccino is by LavAzza.

Despite the many staff, wearing a white T-shirt and La Belle branded apron, service was slow in bringing the menu when I arrived, and bringing out the main course I had ordered.  Different persons came to check about ordering, so there is no ownership of a table or customer.  I moved to an outside table, and the tables and chairs look more old-fashioned outside, with a blue-white striped fabric for the chair cushions, possibly more suited in colour to one of Kovensky’s seaside restaurants in Camps Bay, given the dominant green and white of the hotel.  Seating is provided for 80 outside.  The tables have Himalayan Rock Salt and Mixed Pepepr grinders on the table, and a glass vase with a pin cushion protea in it.  There are no table cloths, but a material serviette and cutlery by Eetrite.

The menu looks like that of The Grand, an A5 tabloid size printed on newsprint, in green, with its positioning of ‘Light, Fresh & Tasty’ on the opening page.  The menu is clearly divided into sections, with a small selection of items for each.  Breakfast is served until 11h45, but the menu does not state this.   The Breakfast section offers the largest variety, ranging from a simple croissant with cheese and preserves (R35) to the ‘Five Star Breakfast with a Glass of Champagne’, consisting of poached eggs, Scottish salmon, buckwheat blinis, a tomato coriander salsa, and a glass of Veuve Clicquot, at a whopping R250, easily Cape Town’s most expensive Breakfast!  I was told by the PR and Marketing Manager Heidi Prinsloo that the Eggs Benedict are really good, served with ham or salmon, and a toasted English muffin (R70).  One can also order Churros, flapjacks, ‘Ricotta hotcakes’, French Toast, a fruit platter, and ‘The Alphen Breakfast’ (R130), consisting of pastries, blueberry pancakes, fruit, yoghurt, and a cooked breakfast.

Salads range from R70 – R90, and the more unusual ones are Spring Pea & Plum, and Chermoula Tuna.  On a choice of ‘artisan breads’ (baguette, ciabatta, sourdough, rye), sandwiches are served, including pastrami and mustard, chicken & Brie, ‘Smokey Sirloin’, and roast chicken with mustard and mayonnaise, costing R 60 – R90. The Light Meals section offers a charcuterie platter for two at R130, a cheese board with preserves for R80; six oysters served with an apple, beetroot and ‘Champagne Salsa’ for R80; braised lamb pie; fish cakes; and grilled asparagus with poached egg (R85).  Main courses include the La Belle Beef Burger, with avocado, and a Porcini Sauce, at R80; a chickpea burger; a very tasty mustard and herb roast chicken (R85) served with olive oil mash and a green bean salad – the salad was misleadingly named, being mainly rocket decorating the edge of the plate and about 4 green beans, but the chicken was a generous portion, the mustard adding an interesting taste to it; tuna steak (R110); beer battered kingklip (R120), fillet steak (R140); Sirloin Forester (R115), and Meatballs & Tagliatelle (R85).  Extra sides can be ordered at R20. No desserts are listed on the menu, but one is probably encouraged to order a pastry.  The names of the large range of pastry items are not listed. Interesting sounding Raw Juices (about R30) and Smoothies (R40) are offered.  Nine teas cost R20. A selection of cocktails is served. Veuve Clicquot costs R170 per glass and R850 per bottle, while Graham Beck Brut is offered at R220 and their Rosé at R490, not being available by the glass.  Pongrácz Brut costs R40/R200 and its Rosé R50/R240.  A small selection of Constantia wines is offered, as is a Red and a White wine section, without vintages mentioned.  Kevin Arnold Shiraz costs R85/R320, and Haute Cabrière Chardonnay/Pinot Noir R45/R170.

Heidi showed me the new sister evening dining restaurant, rather oddly named but literally 5 Rooms Restaurant, connected with a bar room, seating 100 guests inside, and a further 80 outside.  It is beautifully decorated with red and blue velvet chairs, and all the original paintings of the hotel.   I was assured by Heidi that despite its beautiful decor, that it is not a fine dining restaurant.  Fernando Roman is the chef.

The Alphen Hotel has been beautifully transformed by Antoni Associates design interiors, and each space has a unique design, giving it modernity within an historic framework.  La Belle has clearly made its mark in Constantia already, judging by how full it was yesterday. Prices are reasonable, with a good variety of items and prices to choose from.   La Belle is Simone Kovensky’s project, and she has done a great job in getting the restaurant running smoothly since its opening two months ago.  A kitchen staff shortage appears to be a problem, however, given the slow arrival of the food.  The waiters were very friendly, as was Amber, the hostess.

La Belle Café and Bakery, Alphen Hotel, Alphen Drive, Constantia.   Tel (021) 795-6336.  www.alphen.co.za Monday – Sunday 7h00 – 18h30. Opening until 22h00 from 12 March onwards, with a dinner menu.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage

Three months ago we conducted a survey of top-end hotel rates in Cape Town.  Given the tourism crisis in the Cape, I repeated the survey 10 days ago, calling the same hotels as well as two additional ones not included previously, asking them for their November rates.  The One & Only Cape Town has overtaken Ellerman House as the most expensive Cape Town hotel by far, starting at R6800 per room, and the Peninsula All Suite Hotel remains the least expensive 5-star hotel, at R1200 per room.  The survey found that the average rate of the sixteen 5-star Cape Town hotels surveyed is R 3630 per room, just over R1800 per person, an average increase by 34% relative to the August rates.   Across all 29 hotels surveyed, the average rate per room is R2908, or just over R1400 per person, 31% higher on average than in August. The most expensive Presidential Suite is at the Westin Grand, at R40000 per day.

Once again it was interesting to hear how the calls were handled, most hotel reservation departments asking careful questions, to identify if the caller was a travel agent/tour operator or a corporate caller, the questioning being very specific in this regard. Holders of a Protea Hotel Prokard would have had different rates quoted.  Few hotels called had a rate sheet from which to quote immediately, having to access their computer for the ‘best available rate’ information, costing time, one hotel putting the call on hold to piped music while they did their rate calculations.  I was shocked at the poor quality of the call handling and quoting by the hotel Reservations departments, quoting odd rates (i.e. not rounded off) very quickly, making it difficult to understand and record them accurately; interrupting while one was still speaking; surprising was the inability in many cases of the staff to understand and hear the request, asking me to repeat the dates, and the number of persons; for the first time, the question ‘group or individual’ was asked bluntly, without explanation; not all hotels quote rates with breakfast included, despite being asked for this rate (Protea Hotels quote room only, and seem surprised when asked to add the breakfast rate); and one hotel could not quote a rate as the system was down, and promised to call back … they never did!   The Protea Hotel group quotes day by day rates, and the reservations staff had to obtain permission to quote an average rate, making it tedious to obtain quotes from them, as they have to quote the average rate and then add the breakfast rate.  For hoteliers it must be frightening to hear that not one of the 29 hotels I called had a call to action, asking if I would like to book, given that Cape Town has the best hotels in Africa!

Most hotels have increased their rates since August, now quoting summer rates. However, 15 on Orange has decreased its rate by 23%, the Peninsula All Suite Hotel rate decreased by 20 %, and there was a small decrease in the Protea Hotel Breakwater Lodge rate.   Interesting is that the Cape Grace Hotel rate has not changed, probably meaning that they did not drop their rates in winter, due to good demand – in fact they increased rates by 10 % in August. The largest rate increases since August were by the Bay Hotel (119%), One&Only Cape Town (95%), Twelve Apostles Hotel (87%), Winchester Mansions Hotel (80%), Commodore Hotel (79%), the Taj (65%), Table Bay Hotel (63%), and Portswood Hotel (61%). Interesting is that the Steenberg Hotel, just voted the best hotel in Africa by Conde Nast Traveler readers, ranks 10th on price.  The Protea Hotel-operated properties generally are at the lower end of the price ranking, being more attractively priced to fill their beds.

The rates were checked for 3 – 6 November per room for 2 adults sharing and inclusive of Breakfast per day, so as to compare the rates fairly (we did not realise that this period coincides with the Volvo Ocean Race, making a number of hotels fully booked. We chose rates for the dates closest to the dates we requested).  We added breakfast to the rates where these were quoted separately.   We have ranked the hotel rates from most to least expensive, and reflect the rate change on the lowest priced room relative to our survey for August 2011 in brackets:

One&Only Cape Town, 5 star, R6800 – R15300 Tel (021) 431-5888 (95 % rate increase) – only 5 – 10 rooms qualify for the special South African rate of R3299 daily – very detailed description of each room type provided telephonically

Ellerman House, 5 star, R5200 – R16400 (The new villa has 3 rooms offered at R48600 and 5-rooms at R60500), Tel (021) 430-3200 (4%  rate increase)

Table Bay Hotel, 5 star, R 5168, Tel (021) 406-5000 (63% rate increase) – very unfriendly, very hard to understand. Fully booked on 3 November.

Cape Grace Hotel, 5 star, R 4980 – R 14 530 for the penthouse, Tel (021) 410-7100 (Zero rate change)

Twelve Apostles Hotel, 5 star, R 4105 – R 6625.  Tel (021) 437-9000 (87% rate increase)

Cape Royale Luxury Hotel, 5 star, R 4086 – R20000 for the Presidential Suite.  Tel (021) 430-0500 (14% rate increase) – fully booked 6 November

Mount Nelson Hotel, 5 star, R 3800 – R 11000. Tel (021) 483-1000 (27 % rate increase)

The Taj Hotel, 5 star, R 3550 – R 34000 for Presidential Suite. Tel (021) 819-2000 (65% rate increase)

Bay Hotel, 5 star, R 3500 (stay for 3 nights, pay for 2).  Tel (021) 438-4444 (119% rate increase)

Steenberg Hotel, 5 star, R 3435 – R 14850. Tel (021) 713-2222 (first time inclusion)

Dock House, 5 star, R 3464. Tel (021) 421-9334 (43% rate increase) – drastic price decrease in August, rates now back to May level

Queen Victoria Hotel, not graded yet but seeking 5 stars, R 2996 – R 20000, Tel (021) 418-1466 (27 % rate increase)

Commodore Hotel, 4 star, R 2860 – R 12 720.  Tel (021) 415-1000 (79% rate increase). Fully booked 3 November.

Westin Grand Cape Town Arabella Quays, 5 star, R 2730 – R 40000 for Presidential Suite. Tel (021) 412-9999 (26 % rate increase)

Winchester Mansions Hotel, 4 star, R 2640 – R4135.  Tel (021) 434-2351 (80 % rate increase)

Portswood Hotel, 4 star, R 2570 – R 3960.  Tel (021) 415-1000 (61% rate increase). Fully booked 3 November

V & A Hotel, 4 star, R 2320 – R 3124 . Tel (021) 415-1000 (41% rate increase)

15 on Orange Hotel, 5 star, R 2020 – R 2620, Tel (021) 469-8000 (23 % rate decrease)

Cullinan Hotel, 5 star, R 2095  – R 4451.  Tel (021) 415-4000 (38 % rate increase) – this hotel had a computer problem when I called, and promised to call me back, to give me a rate.  After waiting for two days, I called again!

Crystal Towers Hotel & Spa, 5 star, R 1950 – R 3050.  Tel (021) 525-3888 (15% rate increase) – very loud volume of music and voice

Protea Hotel Fire & Ice Hotel, 3 star,  R 1940 – R 2040, Tel (021) 488-2555 (31% rate increase!)

Victoria Junction Hotel, 4 star, R 1900 – R2200 Tel (021) 418-1234 (5 % rate increase)

Vineyard Hotel, 4 star, R 1850 – R 3950. Tel (021) 657-4500. First time inclusion. Friendly and efficient.

President Hotel, 4 star, R 1780 – R 2830. Tel (021) 434-8111 (22% rate increase)

Southern Sun Waterfront Hotel, 4 star, R 1605 – R 3855. Tel (021) 409-4000 (11 % rate increase). Very poor ability to hear and understand the caller’s requirements.

Cape Sun Hotel, 4 star, R 1380 – R 3810.  Tel (021) 488-5100 (6% rate increase)

Ambassador Hotel, 4 star, R 1250 – R 1950. Tel (021) 439-6176 (Zero rate change)

Peninsula All Suite Hotel, 5 star, R 1200 – R 2170.  Tel (021) 430-7777 (20% rate decrease)

Protea Hotel Breakwater Lodge, no star grading, R 1170 standard, R 1595 business rooms. Tel (021) 406-1911 (4% rate decrease). Poor ability to comprehend the caller’s requirements.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter:@WhaleCottage

We are delighted that many restaurants in Cape Town and the Winelands have seen the benefit of offering specials, and are continuing to do so.  The Spring/Summer 2011/2012 specials for Cape Town and Winelands restaurants follow below, and will be updated continuously:

*   Pure at Hout Bay Manor: 3-course dinner for R 220. Summer. Tel (021) 790-0116.

*   Pepenero in Mouille Point : sirloin and chips R79, seafood platter R 129, 1 kg prawn platter R99, oysters R9 each, sushi platter R109.  Half price sushi all day.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 439-9027

*   Sinn’s Restaurant at Wembley Square:  Lunch (6 options) at R50.  3-course dinner with glass of wine R150.  Summer. Tel (021) 465-0967

*   Theo’s on Beach Road, Mouille Point: Oysters R 8 each, 15 prawns R99, line fish R99, 250 gm Sirloin steak. Kingklip and 6 prawns R125.  250g Sirloin steak and 6 prawns R125. 250g Lobster and 6 prawns R159. Summer. Tel (021) 439-3494.

*   Sevruga in the V&A Waterfront: half price sushi Monday – Saturday 12 - 6 pm; 25 % off sushi Sunday 12 – 2pm, 50 % off Sunday 2 – 6 pm, 3-course menu R160, daily, lunch and dinner; 2-course lunch R120. Summer. Tel (021) 421-5134

*   Beluga, The Foundry, Green Point: 1 kg Prawns R130, 50 % off sushi and cocktails all day Sunday, and from 12h00 – 19h00 weekdays. 2-course lunch R120; 3-course lunch and dinner R160.  Summer. Tel (021) 418-2948.

*   La Mouette, Regent Road, Sea Point : 6-course Tasting Menu R 165, with wines paired R 330. Monday – Sunday dinner, Friday and Saturday lunch.  April. Tel (021) 433-0856

*   Bertha’s in Simonstown: 1 kg Queen prawns cost R99 each, 1kg mussels R99, 1 kg chicken wings R99, full rack of ribs plus chips R99.  Half rack of ribs R59. Summer. Tel (021) 786-2138

*   Aubergine:  2-course lunch R198,  3-course lunch R254, Wednesdays – Fridays.  Monday – Saturdays except public holidays. Daily dinner specials. 3-course R375, 4-course R455, 5-course R565 degustation menu. Summer. Tel (021) 465-4909

*   Ferryman’s Tavern, V&A Waterfront: Buffet plus Castle draught weekday lunch, R65. Sunday roast R 55 Indefinite.  Tel (021) 419-7748

*   Hildebrand: 2 courses R99, 3 courses R130 if eat before 19h00;  Summer. Tel (021) 425-3385

*   Leaf Restaurant and Bar: 50 % off sushi all day, Dimsum 30 % off, Burgers R50 – R65.  Summer. Tel (021) 418-4500

*   Blowfish in Blouberg: half-price sushi Wednesday 5 – 8 pm; Eat all you can sushi Sunday 5-10 pm R149.  Summer. Tel (021) 556-5464

*   Vanilla, Cape Quarter:  Half price sushi 12h00 – 17h00 Daily. Summer. Tel (021) 421-1391

*   Knife restaurant, Century City:  Bagel R35; Salad R45; Rib, meatball, chicken wing and chip platter R60, all specials include a beer/glass of wine/colddrink and coffee.  Lunch special, 12h00 – 15h00, Mondays – Fridays. Indefinite. Tel (021) 551-5000

*   Saul’s Sushi @ Vegas, Sea Point: Eat as much sushi as you like for R115 Mondays and Tuesdays, 30 piece sushi platter R50 – Wednesdays and Thursdays; two for the price of one – Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  Indefinite. Tel 087 151 4595

*   Trees Restaurant, Townhouse Hotel, Cape Town:  2 courses R 95, 3 courses R 130. Indefinite. Tel (021) 465-7050

*   Down South Food Bar, 267 Long Street:  Platter of ribs, chicken wings, prawns, chips, corn, sauce for R190 for two persons. Indefinite. Tel (021) 422-1155.

*  Cape Town Fish Market, V&A:  ”All you can eat Breakfast Buffet” R 60, Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays; Seafood lunch buffet R125, Sundays and public holidays. Indefinite. Tel (021) 418-5977

*   Trinity, Bennett Street:  All you can eat rib R99 Mondays ; 2 Pizzas and 2 glasses of wine R99 Monday – Thursday from 12 pm;  I/2 price sushi, cocktails and tapas Monday – Thursday 16h00 – 22h00. Summer. Tel (021) 418-0624

*   French Toast, Bree Street: Bruschetta tapas free  Monday – Saturdays, 5 – 7 pm.  All wines costing R 400 or less half price on Mondays.  2-course lunch consisting of soup and choice of two tapas plus glass of wine or cup of coffee R89, Monday – Friday 12h00 – 16h00.  Summer. Tel (021) 422-3839.

* The Square, Vineyard Hotel, Newlands:  5 courses paired menu R 195.  Dinner only, Monday – Sunday.  Summer. Tel ()21) 657-4500

*   Dunes, Hout Bay : Sunday buffet with smoked salmon, oysters and cooked breakfast R100. Summer. Tel (021) 790-1876

*   Arnold’s on Kloof, 60 Kloof Street, Gardens:  Early bird breakfast half-price special if order before 7h00. Gemsbok Wellington R115, Vegetable stack Napoleon R68, Summer salad R55, Chicken schnitzel R69, Seafood platter R150, Crocodile loin R159.  Tel (021) 424-4344.  Summer.

*   Five Flies, 2-course meal plus glass of wine R100, book on website www.fiveflies.co.za.  Current. Tel (021) 424-4442

*   Balducci’s, V&A Waterfront: Alfresco Lunch specials – soup and salad R89, fish R89, calamari R89, seafood platter for two R245, Steak Roll and chips R85, Steak and chips R99, Burgers R55 – R75, Glass of wine R27, bottle of wine R99, open sandwiches R64 – R86.  Daily 12h00 – 16h00. Summer. Tel (021) 421-6002

*  Codfather, Camps Bay:  half-price sushi 12h00 – 18h00, daily.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 438-0782

*   Black Marlin, Simonstown:  2-course meal R115, 3-course R140 includes glass of wine. Indefinite. Tel (021) 786-1621

*   Cape Town Fish Market, Big Bay, V&A Waterfront, Canal Walk, Tyger Valley, Somerset West, Stellenbosch, Tokai, Grand West Casino: “All you can eat Breakfast Buffet” R60, Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays; 4-course Seafood buffet lunch R125, Sundays and public holidays.  Buy one, get one free – hake on Mondays, sushi on Tuesdays, calamari on Wednesdays.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 554-5962.

*   La Bruixa, Sea Point:  Seafood paella for two for R260, includes a salad.  Summer. Tel (021) 434-8797

*   La Boheme, Sea Point:   2-courses R95, 3-courses R 120.  Summer. Tel (021) 434-8797.

*   The Round House, Camps Bay: 4-course a la carte menu R450, 7-course set tasting menu R595. Summer. Tel (021) 438-4347

*   Planet Restaurant,  Mount Nelson Hotel:  6-course Vegan Journey menu R300 (R380 from 15/9), 4-course The Journey menu R220 (R255 from 15/9 – 15/11), 6-course The Journey menu R380. Summer. Tel (021) 483-1000.

*   Café Manhattan, 74 Waterkant Street: Burger and a glass of wine R45.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 421-6666

*   Pepper Club on the Beach, Camps Bay: 6 oysters plus bubbly R 110, Shrimp cocktail and Avo Ritz R55, Prawn platter R 125, Grilled Portuguese sardines R45, Smoked salmon trout and asparagus R85, East Coast sole R110, Lamb rib R95, Rib-eye steak R115. Summer. Tel (021) 438-3174

*   Savour Restaurant, Sunday Lunch Buffet plus ’never-ending supply of Methodé Cap Classique’ R265. Summer. Tel (021) 469-8037

*   La Colombe, Constantia: 6-courses R 600, or with wine R800, Monday – Saturday, Summer. Tel (021) 794-2390

*   Catharina’s, Steenberg Hotel: 2-course lunch R185, 3-course lunch R215, 3-course dinner R250.  Summer.  Tel (021) 713-2222

*   Constantia Uitsig: 3-course lunch and dinner R390, Monday – Saturday. Summer. Tel (021) 794-4480

*   Rick’s Café Américain, Park Road: 1/2 litre Paulaner, Erdinger and Valentins beer R 32, 5 – 7 pm; Lunch specials from R45; and more specials on drinks. Indefinite.  Tel (021) 424-1100

*   Barocca, Camps Bay Club: 2 for the price of one burgers Tuesday evenings; Pasta and a glass of wine R50 Thursday evenings.  From 5 pm. Indefinite. Tel (021) 438-1992

*   Seaforth Restaurant, Simonstown: Deep fried prawns R90 Tuesdays; hake and chips R38 Wednesdays; Eat as much calamari as you like R49 Thursdays; Steak and calamari R78 Fridays; Eat as much as you like pork spare ribs R88 Saturdays. From 6 pm. Indefinite. Tel (021) 786-4810

*   Pizzeria Villagio, Howard Centre, Pinelands: Free glass of Teddy Hall wine with home-made pasta on Tuesdays.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 531-4473.

*   Adega, Sea Point: 1kg King Prawns R119. Indefinite. Tel (021) 434-3029

*   Addis in Cape Ethiopian Restaurant, 41 Church Street: 2-course set menu R130.  Tel (021) 424-5722.  Indefinite.

*   Azure Restaurant, Twelve Apostles Hotel, Camps Bay (photograph above): 5-courses R315 includes movie and popcorn, Summer. Tel (021) 437-9000

*   Diva Pizza, Buitenkant Street: 2 large margherita pizzas with choice of two toppings R85.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 461-0013

*   Tokyo Restaurant & Sushi Bar: Buy one get one free daily until 5pm; Sushi Buffet Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturday evenings R110.  Indefinite. Tel (021) 424-5108.

*   OYO, V&A Hotel, Waterfront: Crayfish Special, 500 g R195. Summer. Tel (021) 419-6677.

**   BlueFin Seafood & Sushi, Plattekloof: 50 % off sushi 10h00 – 15h00; ‘Eat as much a you like’ Sushi R129; Monday – Sunday. Tel (021) 558-4281

*   Rhapsody’s, Green Point: 50 % off sushi daily from 12h00 – 18h00. Summer. Tel (021) 434-3004

*   Reuben’s, One&Only Cape Town, V&A Waterfront: One&Only Seafood Platter for Two R 995. Summer. Tel (021) 431-5888

*   Bayside Café, Camps Bay:  Order two main courses, and second person gets lower priced dish free, senior citizens only.  Until 30 April. Tel (021) 438-2560.

*   Café Chameleon, Plattekloof: Beer-battered hake and calamari with a glass of wine/beer/juice R69.  Until 31 March.  Monday – Friday lunch special of small pizza R 45.  Monday and Saturday dinner large pizza special R55.  Ongoing. Tel (021) 911-1025

*   Taiwan City Chinese Cuisine, Century City: 3 courses for 2 persons for R175. Until 30 June. Tel (021) 555-3081

*   Myoga, Vineyard Hotel, Newlands: 7-course dinner R 225. Until April.  Tel (021) 657-4545.

*   Zorba’s, Lagoon Beach: Seafood and meat platter for 2 R220.  Lunch and dinner daily (not valid Saturday lunch). Tel (021) 528-2093

*   Saints on 84 Kloof Street: Bottomless sodas with every meal; 2 flatbreads for price of one on Mondays; 2 burgers for the price of one on Thursday evenings; Craft beer on tap R20 for a pint. Current. Tel (021) 424-0030

*   Den Anker, V&A Waterfront: Vol au vent  with Vedett white beer R 85.  Until October. Tel (021) 419-0249

* F.east, Loop Street: chicken or vegetable curry lunch special R59. Current. Tel (021) 424-5903.

*   Sinatra’s at The Pepper Club Hotel has a business lunch special of R50 for a meal ordered, served and eaten in 50 minutes, or you get your money back. Monday – Friday. Current. Tel (021) 812-8888.

WINELANDS

Franschhoek

*   Allee Bleue, outside Franschhoek: choice of three 250g steaks at R115, including a glass of estate wine, current. Lunch, Wednesday – Sunday. Chicnic picnics daily (weather depending), R145 per person. Summer Tel (021) 874-1021

*   Allora in Franschhoek: 3-course Sunday lunch R99 all year. Daily lunch specials Monday – Saturday under R100. Until end April. Tel (021) 876-4375.

*   L’ermitage, Franschhoek: 3-courses R185 and a glass of wine. Lunch. Summer. Tel (021) 876-9200

*   Grande Provence Jonkershuis, Franschhoek: 4-course lunch and dinner chef’s table, minimum 8 guests, R 320.  Monday – Saturday dinner, Monday – Sunday lunch. Summer. Tel (021) 876-8600

*   Monneaux Restaurant, Franschhoek Country House:  3-course tasting menu Lunch with wine R 200, Monday – Sunday.  Summer. Tel (021) 876-3386

*   Mange Tout, Mont Rochelle Hotel, Franschhoek: 2-courses R230, 3-courses R280. Summer. Tel (021) 876-3000.

*   La Residence, Franschhoek: 2 courses R 380, 3 courses R 490, 4 courses R 600 per person, all inclusive of ‘house wines’ and local beverages. Dinner.  Daily.  Summer.  Tel (021) 876-4100

* Grande Provence, Franschhoek: Chef’s Table, 3-course meal for a minimum of eight guests, R 250 per person. 1 May – 30 September.  Tel (021) 876-8600.

Paarl

*   Bosman’s, Grande Roche, Paarl: 2-courses R120, 3-courses R155.  Monday – Sunday lunch.  Until April . Tel (021) 863-5100.

Stellenbosch

*   Towerbosch Restaurant, Knorhoek Wine Estate, Stellenbosch:  Asado Argentian-style braai on Sundays R165. Indefinite. Tel (021) 865-2958

*   Tokara Restaurant, Stellenbosch: Chef’s Menu – 8 courses, inclusive of amuse bouche and palate cleanser R 450.  Summer. Tuesday – Sunday lunch, Tuesday – Saturday dinner. Tel (021) 885-2550

*   Wild Peacock Food Emporium, 32 Piet Retief Str, Stellenbosch: Specials as per menu, dinner   Wednesday and Friday evenings. Indefinite. Tel (021) 887-7585

*   Johan’s at Longridge, Stellenbosch: 6-course lunch and dinner plus 6 glasses of wine R 400. Friday – Tuesday (closed Wednesdays and Thursdays). Summer. Tel (021) 855-2004.

*   Clos Malverne, Stellenbosch: 60 Minute Business Lunch, R58 – R108. Tuesday – Friday. Tel (021) 865-2022

*   Lord Neethling Restaurant, Neethlingshof, Stellenbosch:  choice of 6 main courses R115, Sunday buffet lunch R150.  Tel (021) 883-8966.

Hermanus

*   Season in Hermanus: Pork roast R66, 3-courses R 125 Sunday lunch; Hake and calamari platter R55, Thursday lunch and dinner. Summer. Tel (028) 316-2854

*   The Class Room, Hermanus: 3-course Sunday lunch R130. 6-course dinner R150 Wednesday – Saturday evenings.  April. Tel (028) 316-3582

*   Rossi’s Italian Restaurant, Hermanus: Small Pizza R38/R45, Lunch Mondays – Thursdays; Indefinite. Tel (028) 312-2848

*   Grilleri, Hermanus : Decreased prices, Tuesday – Sunday evenings, Sunday lunch. Summer. Tel (028) 313-1685

Plettenberg Bay

*   Nguni: Friday night special R50.  Tel (044) 533-6710

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage

Copyright: Whale Cottage Portfolio

We are delighted that many restaurants in Cape Town and the Winelands have seen the benefit of offering specials, and have done so since last winter, many running through summer too.   The winter specials for Cape Town and Winelands restaurants follow below, and will be updated continuously:

*   Pure at Hout Bay Manor: 3-course dinner for R195, includes 2 glasses of Groote Post wine, 10 May – end June. Closed July.  Tel (021) 790-0116.

*   Pepenero in Mouille Point : sirloin and chips R79, seafood platter R 129, 1 kg prawn platter R99, oysters R9 each, sushi platter R109.  Half price sushi all day.  From 9 May. Tel (021) 439-9027

*   Sinn’s Restaurant at Wembley Square:  lunch (6 options) at R50.  3-course dinner with glass of wine R150.  Sunday Buffet – 2 courses plus coffee R120, 3 courses plus coffee R150.  Winter. Tel (021) 465-0967

*   Theo’s on Beach Road, Mouille Point: oysters R6 each, 1 kg prawns R99, line fish R79, for lunch and dinner.  300 gram sirloin steak, spatchcock chicken peri peri, 500 gram spare ribs all R79 for lunch only.  Full sushi platter R99, half platter R50. Winter. Tel (021) 439-3494.

*   Sevruga in the V&A Waterfront: half price sushi Monday – Saturday 12 - 6 pm; 25 % off sushi Sunday 12 – 2pm, 50 % off Sunday 2 – 6 pm, 3-course menu R160, daily, lunch and dinner; 2-course lunch R120. 3-course lunch and dinner R160. End September. Tel (021) 421-5134

*   Myoga at Vineyard Hotel, Newlands: 7 course dinner, with 5 choices per course, for R195, Mondays – Saturdays, throughout winter. Tel (021) 657-4545

*   Beluga, The Foundry, Green Point: 1 kg Prawns R99; 50 % off sushi and cocktails all day Sunday, and from 12h00 – 19h00 weekdays. 2-course lunch R120; 3-course lunch and dinner R160.  End September. Tel (021) 418-2948.

*   221 Waterfront:  3-course meal at R135 on Wednesdays.  Dine & Cruise package: 1,5 hour cruise, 2 glasses sparkling wine, 3-course meal R370; Lunch & Cruise package: 1 hour cruise and meal R210.  Winter. Tel (021) 418-3633

*  The Lookout Deck, Hout Bay:  Seafood Platter with line fish, mussels, calamari and prawns R65. Until 31 August. Tel (021) 790-0900

*   La Mouette, Regent Road, Sea Point (photograph above): Tasting Menu (items change monthly) 6 courses R240 for 2 persons, Tuesday – Sunday dinner, Friday and Saturday lunch.  Winter. Tel (021) 433-0856

*   Bertha’s in Simonstown: 1 kg Queen prawns cost R99 each, Calamari, mussel, chips, BBQ chicken and wing platter R99, 600g ribs plus 500ml Windhoek draught R99. Winter. Tel (021) 786-2138

*   Aubergine:  2-course lunch R184,  3-course lunch R235.  2-course dinner R200, 3-course dinner R275.   Wednesdays – Fridays except public holidays. Winter.  Tel (021) 465-4909

*   Ferryman’s Tavern, V&A Waterfront: Combo-specials R100 (linefish + calamari), R85 (sirloin + calamari), R99 (pork rib + chicken wings), Mussel hotpot R75.  Winter. Sunday Hot Pot Buffet Eat as much as you like R120, Sundays, until end August.  Tel (021) 419-7748

*   Hildebrand: 2 courses R99, 3 courses R130 if eat before 19h00;  Winter. Tel (021) 425-3385

*   Leaf Restaurant and Bar: 50 % off sushi all day, Dimsum 30 % off, Burgers R50 – R65.  Winter. Tel (021) 418-4500

*   Blowfish in Blouberg: Breakfast specials: egg and bacon sandwich R19, Three Cheese and Mushroom omelette R25, Smoked salmon and scrambled eggs R25; Lunch specials of Surf ‘n Turf, Rack of Ribs, Thai Chicken Curry, and Mussel and Chorizo Chowder at R49 Monday – Saturday 12h00 – 17h00; Dinner specials: seafood platter, slow roasted lamb shank, oxtail stew, and seafood curry R99, Monday – Saturday 17h00 onwards. Winter. Tel (021) 556-5464

*   Vanilla, Cape Quarter:  1/2 price sushi 12h00 – 18h00,  half-price cocktails 4 – 6 pm. Winter. Tel (021) 421-1391

*   Knife restaurant, Century City:  Bagel R35; Salad R45; Rib, meatball, chicken wing and chip platter R60, all specials include a beer/glass of wine/colddrink and coffee.  Lunch special, 12h00 – 15h00, Mondays – Fridays. Winter. Tel (021) 551-5000

*   Saul’s Sushi @ Vegas, Sea Point: 30 piece sushi platter R99 – Wednesdays and Thursdays; two for the price of one – Sundays.  Winter. Tel 087 151 4595

*    Bhandaris Indian Restaurant: Buffet R99 Wednesday dinner and Sunday lunch and dinner. 30 % off for pensioners on Tuesdays. Lowest value meal for free if buy bottle of wine or two drinks for a pre-booked table of up to 10, on Monday evenings; Lamb R79, Chicken R69, Fish R85 – Tuesday – Sundays.  Winter. Tel (021) 702-2975/Tel (021) 782-1525.

*    Zorba’s, Lagoon Beach Hotel, Lagoon Beach Drive, Milnerton: Seafood and meat platter for two plus two glasses of Hartenberg wine R199  19 August – 19 September. Tel (021) 528-2093

*   Trees Restaurant, Townhouse Hotel, Cape Town:  Casserole or steak with starch of day and glass of wine R105.  Winter. Tel (021) 465-7050

*   Down South Food Bar, 267 Long Street: Rib & Prawn Platter including a side and sauces R75.  Winter. Tel (021) 422-1155.

*   Il Cappero, Barrack Street: Daily lunch main course special at R40.  Three month Winter Special Card, costs R 140 for 11 starters, 11 main courses and 11 desserts, at 50 % off the menu price.   Monday – Friday. May – July. Tel 461-3168

*   Cape Town Fish Market:  ”All you can eat Breakfast Buffet” R 60, Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays; Seafood lunch buffet R125, Sundays and public holidays.  Winter. Tel (021) 418-5977

*   Trinity, Bennett Street:  “All you can eat” Dim Sum R135. Two-for-price-of-one burgers Wednesdays. Pizza R50 until 7 pm daily.   Seafood platter R100  on Thursday.  “All you can eat” ribs Mondays R99.  Two for the price of one sushi and Dim Sum Monday – Saturday 12h00 – 20h00.  Pizza R50 Monday – Saturday 12h00 – 19h00. Winter. Tel (021) 418-0624

*   French Toast, Bree Street: Bruschetta tapas free  Monday – Saturdays, 5 – 7 pm.  All wines costing R 400 or less half price on Mondays.  2-course lunch consisting of soup and choice of two tapas plus glass of wine or cup of coffee R89, Monday – Friday 12h00 – 16h00.  Winter. Tel (021) 422-3839.

*   Cru Café Restaurant & Wine Bar, Cape Quarter: Scrambled egg and salmon breakfast for 2 plus bottomless cup of coffee R 78, Weekdays; 2 gourmet burgers with onion rings, French fries and Stella Artois beer R120 weekday lunch; Comfort food (Bobotie or Bredie) for two for R119, including 2 glasses of wine, Wednesday and Thursday evenings. T-bone steak (350g) for two at R150, Friday and Saturday evenings. Until September. Tel (021) 418-6334

*   Krugmann’s Grill, V&A Waterfront: 250 g rump or sirloin R45, 19 – 21 August; 250g rump and starch R59, daily.  Winter. Tel (021) 418-9393

*   The Square, Vineyard Hotel, Newlands:  ‘Tastes of 2011′ focuses on different theme every month, from April – September.  British menu change weekly,  2 courses R140 or 3 courses R170.  Dinner only, Monday – Sunday.  Tel ()21) 657-4500

*   Dunes, Hout Bay : Sunday buffet with smoked salmon, oysters and cooked breakfast R100. Current. Tel (021) 790-1876

*   Arnold’s on Kloof, 60 Kloof Street, Gardens: Jack Black stew (type of stew changes throughout winter) for two plus bottle of Altydgedacht R99.  Tel (021) 424-4344. Throughout winter.

*   Five Flies, One free main course for every main course ordered.  Until end August. Tel (021) 424-4442

*   Balducci’s, V&A Waterfront: Alfresco Lunch specials – soup and salad R89, fish R89, calamari R89, seafood platter for two R245, Steak Roll and chips R85, Steak and chips R99, Burgers R55 – R75, Glass of wine R27, bottle R99.  daily 12h00 – 16h00. Tel (021) 421-6002

*   Harbour House, Kalk Bay: 2-courses R140, 3-courses R160. Excludes Sundays.  September. Tel (021)  788-4133

*   Live Bait, Kalk Bay: Seafood platter R65. Sunday – Thursday evenings, and Monday – Friday lunch. September. Tel (021) 788-5755

*  Polana, Kalk Bay: Mozambique-style prawns, Algarve salad and chips. R50, Sunday – Thursday dinner and Saturday lunch. September. Tel (021) 788-7162

*   Massimo’s Pizza Club, Hout Bay: “Order any 2 adult take away (pizza, pasta salad)” to a minimum value of R100, and get an &Union beer, Darling Brew beer or a 500ml bottle of Bob’s Your Uncle wine for free, all day Wednesdays and Thursdays, Fridays until 17h00.  Lunch offer – Free glass of house wine or beer when ordering main course, Wednesday – Friday, 12h00 – 16h00. Until August Tel (021) 790-5648.

*   Codfather, Camps Bay:  half-price sushi 12h00 – 18h00, daily.  Winter. Tel (021) 438-0782

*   Caffe Milano, Kloof Street: Lunch specials - Rump on a baguette R70; Pizza with pomodoro sauce, mozzarella and basil, R 70.  Winter. Tuesday – Sunday. Tel (021)426-5566.

*   Black Marlin, Simonstown:  2-course meal R115, 3-course R140 includes glass of wine.  Until July. Tel (021) 786-1621

*   Savoy Cabbage:  2-course R175, 3-course R195 includes glass of wine .  Until end August. Tel (021) 424-2626.

*   Bayside Café: for every main course, get another lesser-priced main course.  Lunch Monday – Friday,  Sunday – Thursday.  Until October. Tel (021) 438-2650.

*   Mamma Mia Restaurant,  Steenberg:   2-courses R150, 3-courses R175.  Until August. Tel (021)  701-8585

*   Café Chameleon,  Plattekloof: lunch pizza minus 10%, until August. Tel (021) 911-1025.

*   Cape Town Fish Market, ”All you can eat Breakfast Buffet” R60, Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays; Seafood buffet lunch R125, Sundays and public holidays. Winter. Tel (021) 554-5962.

*   Tobago Restaurant, Radisson Blu, Granger Bay: two main courses for price of one, Monday – Saturdays.  Until 30 September.  Tel (021) 441-3414

*   La Bruixa, Sea Point:  Seafood paella for two for R260, includes a salad.  Lunch 12h00 – 15h00.  Until June.  Tel (021) 434-8797

*   Sinatra’s, Pepper Club Hotel, Loop Street:  Glass of bubbly and 6 oysters for R 60.  Fridays from 16h00.  Until December.  Tel (021) 812-8826

*   Chai yo, Canal Walk: Buy two main meals and get lesser priced one free.  Winter. Monday – Sunday.   Tel (021) 555-0620.

*   La Boheme, Sea Point:   2-courses R95, 3-courses R115.  Throughout 2011. Tel (021) 434-8797.

*   Food Barn, Noordhoek:  3-courses with 2 glasses of Steenberg wine R165,  4-courses with 3 glasses of Steenberg wine R185,  5-courses with 4 glasses of Steenberg wine R215.  Lunch daily.  Wednesday – Saturday dinner, May – October. Tel (021) 789-1390

*   What’s On Eatery, Watson Str:  2 course dinner at R 99, includes a glass of wine. Breakfast weekdays R25.  Lunch R39, menu changes daily, on weekdays, R5 extra for glass of wine or milkshake, every 7th lunch is free with What’s On Loyalty Card. 11 May – October. Tel (021) 422-5652

*   Nobu, One&Only Cape Town, Cape Town:  5-course R299, May – August. Tel (021) 431-4511.

*   The Kove, Camps Bay: 2-courses R 120, 3-courses R150.  Rump steak R79, Fillet R99, Grilled Norwegian Salmon R99, Peri Peri baby chicken R90, Line fish R90, Seafood platter R165, Gourmet Burger R60.    Winter. Tel (021) 438-0004

*   The Greenhouse, Cellars-Hohenhort Hotel, Constantia: 6-course meal with wines from Klein Constantia R295. Tuesday – Friday.  Until September. Tel (021) 794-2137

* Dear Me,  Longmarket Street: 25 % off standard price of 3-course (R240) or 5-course (R350) dinner.  Thursdays.  From 19 May until July.  Tel (021) 422-4920

*   Zenzero, Camps Bay: 2-courses R150, 3-courses R180.  Parmesam lamb R99, Veal Saltimbocca R89, Beef & Reef R 120, Gnocchi Ragu R69, Pancetta and pea risotto R79, Canneloni R69, and Kingklip R99.  Winter. Tel (021) 438-0007

*   The Round House, Camps Bay: 7-course lunch and dinner R240, or R460 paired with wine.   Winter. Tel (021) 438-4347

*   Planet Restaurant,  Mount Nelson Hotel:  4-course Vegan Journey menu R300, 4-course The Journey menu R220, 6-course The Journey menu R300.  Winter. Tel (021) 483-1000.

*   Brio 1893: 3-course dinner R165.  Monday – Thursday.  Closing down 12 August. Tel (021) 422-0654

*   GOLD Restaurant: Winter special R200 + 10 % service fee.  June – September. Tel (021) 421-4653

*   Salt Restaurant, Ambassador Hotel:  2 courses R120 amd 3 courses R140.  Receive a voucher for a free bottle of Hartenberg wine for the next visit if order two 3-course meals.  Until 31 August. Tel (021) 439-7258

*   Tuscany Beach, Camps Bay: 50 % off partner’s main course, Dinner, daily; 25 % off Sushi, 12h00 – 18h00, daily.  Winter. Tel (021) 438-1213.

1800 Degrees, Cape Royale Luxury Hotel: Hot and cold Tapas and jazz, with a bottle of Diemersfontein wine per couple R195 per person, Sundays, 12h00 – 15h00. 100 gram sirloin, 100 gram rump and 100 gram rib eye steaks R99 plus one sauce and jacket potato.  Winter. Tel (021) 430-0511.

*   St Elmo’s: 2 large regular pizzas R99,90,  2 medium regular pizzas R69,90 Take-away, Daily.  2 Large pizzas R79,90 on Tuesdays;  1 Large pizza plus 400g rack of ribs and chips for R109,90, Take Away, daily; Small pizza plus 330ml Coke R24,90, Monday – Friday lunch. Winter. www.stelmos.co.za

*   Café Delicieux, Welgemoed: 2-course dinner R125, 3-courses R155.  Friday evenings.  Winter. Tel (021) 913-1053

*   Café Manhattan, 74 Waterkant Street and 247 Main Road, Three Anchor Bay: Burger and a glass of wine R45.  Winter. Tel (021) 421-6666/Tel (021) 439-9666.

*   Pigalle, Green Point: 3 course dinner and show R330 – R350, 8 June, 21 July, 10 August, 14 September.  Tel (021) 421-4848

*   Pepper Club on the Beach, Camps Bay: Seafood platter R149,95; Sirloin plus 3 prawns R 98,95; Prawn platter R98,95.  Until 31 December. Tel (021) 438-3174

*   Mint, Taj Hotel: 3 courses plus a glass of Ken Forrester Chenin Blanc or Merlot R185, Monday – Sundays, Until 30 September. Tel (021) 819-2000

*   News Café, Green Point: English Breakfast R19, 7h00 – 9h00 Monday – Friday, 7h30 – 9h00 Saturday and Sunday, until 1 February 2012

*   Long Street Café: Butter Chicken Curry and rice, R55, until 10 June, Monday – Sunday.  tel (021) 424-2464

*   Savour Restaurant, 15 on Orange: 3-course meal R180, Monday – Sunday, Until 31 August. Tel (021) 469-8037

*   La Colombe, Constantia: Lunch – 3-courses R240, 3-courses plus wine R280, Monday – Saturday, until 30 November.  Dinner – 5-courses R310, 5-courses plus wine R390, Monday – Saturday, until September. Closed 30 May – 20 June.

*   Catharina’s, Steenberg Hotel: 2-course lunch R165, 3-course lunch R195, 3-course dinner R215.  Until 1 September.  Tel (021) 713-2222

*   The Grand Café and Beach Granger Bay: 2-courses R 125, 3-courses R150, Tuesday – Sunday. Winter. Tel (021) 425-0551

*   Constantia Uitsig: 2-course lunch and dinner R190, 3-course lunch R220, 3-course dinner R250, Monday – Saturday. Until 30 September.  Closed 4 – 26 July.

*   Blues, Camps Bay: 2-courses R120, 3-courses R150, includes a glass of wine and cup of coffee. Monday – Sunday.  Until 1 September.

*   River Café, Constantia: 3-courses and carafe of wine R180, lunch, Monday – Saturday.  Until 30 September. Tel (021) 794-3010.  Closed 10 – 30 August.

*   La Cuccina, Hout Bay: Homemade meal for two plus bottle of wine R100. Monday – Saturday. Until 30 December.

Mugged on Roeland: All you can eat Pizza R80, Friday evenings. Until 30 December. Tel 084 5894 665

*   Chapman’s Peak Hotel, Hout Bay: Free bottle of Elements wine plus 2 Amarula Crème Brulee with two meat main courses ordered; 1 kg prawns R99; Soup R35; Malay Lamb Curry R89; Mussel Mexicana R69; Winter Platter R99.  Monday – Saturday lunch and dinner. Until 30 September. Tel (021) 790-1036

*   Rick’s Café Américain, Park Road: Tapas or Mezze Platter plus 1/2 litre house wine R105; 1/2 litre Paulaner, Erdinger and Valentins beer R 30, 5 – 7 pm; Lunch specials from R39; and more specials on drinks. Winter.  Tel (021) 424-1100

*   Barocca, Camps Bay Club: 2 for the price of one burgers Tuesday evenings; Pasta and a glass of wine R50 Thursday evenings.  From 5 pm.  Winter. Tel (021) 438-1992

*   Seaforth Restaurant, Simonstown: Deep fried prawns R90 Tuesdays; hake and chips R38 Wednesdays; Eat as much calamari as you like R49 Thursdays; Steak and calamari R78 Fridays; Eat as much as you like pork spare ribs R88 Saturdays. From 6 pm. June. Tel (021) 786-4810

*   Pizzeria Villagio, Howard Centre, Pinelands: Free glass of Teddy Hall wine with home-made pasta on Tuesdays.  Winter. Tel (021) 531-4473.

*   delish, Hout Bay: Cooked breakfast R35; Soup and ciabatta R30, Monday – Friday lunch; Tagines, ragouts and curries plus glass of wine or beer R75, from 12h00, daily.  Winter. Tel (021) 790-5324

*   Café Sofia, Sea Point, Kloof Street, Camps Bay and Green Point: Buy 2 main courses and get one free, from 17h00, daily.  Winter.

*   Saul’s Taverna, Sea Point: 2-course meal and cocktails for two R140.  Winter. Tel 087 151 4592

*   Adega, Sea Point: Lamb shank R69, Feijoada R89, 1kg King Prawns R95. Winter. Tel (021) 434-3029

*   La Grotto, Plumstead: 300g rump steak R89. Winter. Tel (021) 797-8420.

*   Wangthai, V&A Waterfront, Constantia, Lagoon Beach, Somerset West:  Free glass of Durbanville Hills wine with Curry Festival meal.  Winter. Tel (021) 421-8702/(021) 794-0022/(021) 551-9254/(021) 855-0112.

*   Addis in Cape Ethiopian Restaurant, 41 Church Street: 2-course set menu R130.  Tel (021) 424-5722. Winter

*   Ocean Basket, Western Cape: Oysters R8 each, until 15 July.

*   Azure Restaurant, Twelve Apostles Hotel, Camps Bay: 4-courses R370, 5-courses R495, wine flight prices R50 – R135, until October. Tel (021) 437-9000

*   Diva Pizza, Buitenkant Street: 2 large margherita pizzas with choice of two toppings R85 on Tuesday and Saturday evenings.  Until 31 August. Tel (021) 461-0013

*   Harveys, Winchester Mansions, Sea Point: 2-course lunch R130, 3-course lunch R160; 2-course dinner R150, 3-course dinner R 180.  Monday – Sunday. Winter. Tel (021) 434-2351.

*   Savour, 15 on Orange Hotel: Sunday Lunch Buffet plus ’never-ending supply of Methodé Cap Classique’ R265.  Winter. Tel (021) 469-8000

*   Karibu, V&A Waterfront: 220g rump, Malay chicken, calamari, and bobotie R49.  Monday – Sunday lunch, Sunday – Wednesday dinner.  Until 31 August. Tel (021) 421-7005.

*   Hussar Grill, Green Point and Camps Bay: 2-courses R99, no corkage.  Winter. Tel (021) 433-2081/(021) 438-0151

*   Tokyo Restaurant & Sushi Bar: Buy one get one free daily; Sushi Buffet Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturday evenings R110.  Winter. Tel (021) 424-5108.

WINELANDS

Franschhoek

*   Allee Bleue, outside Franschhoek: choice of three 250g steaks at R115, including a glass of estate wine, current. 3-course lunch R 100, and R150 with wines paired.  Chicken and Prawn Potjie with Roti and glass of Allee Bleue Isabeau or Shiraz R85.  Lunch, Wednesday – Sunday. Until end September. Chicnic picnics daily (weather depending), R145 per person. Summer Tel (021) 874-1021

*   Ryan’s Kitchen at Rusthof, Franschhoek: 3-course dinner R195; 6 course Taste of Africa dinner R295.  Winter. Closed 27 June – 14 July.  Tel (021) 876-4598.

*   Reuben’s, Franschhoek: 2-course lunch and dinner R 220, 3-courses R268, 4-courses R315.  Current. Tel (021) 876-3772

*   Allora in Franschhoek: 3-course Sunday lunch R100.  Winter. Tel (021) 876-4375.

*   L’ermitage, Franschhoek: 1-course R93, 2-courses R125, 3-courses R175, and glass of wine with each option. Lunch. Winter. Tel (021) 876-9200

*   French Connection, Franschhoek: 2-courses R95, 3-courses R125.  Winter. Tel (021) 876-4056

*   Grande Provence Jonkershuis, Franschhoek: 4-course lunch and dinner, minimum 8 guests, R200.  Monday – Saturday dinner, Monday – Sunday lunch.  Closed 18 – 31 July.  Until 30 September. Tel (021) 876-8600

*   Mon Plaisir @Chamonix, Franschhoek: 2-courses R 170, 3-courses R199.  Winter. Tuesday – Sunday lunch, Wednesday – Saturday dinner.  Tel (021) 876-2393.

*   Monneaux Restaurant, Franschhoek Country House: Cape Malay Curry R95, Wednesday evenings; Firecracker Menu - 2 courses R145, 3 courses R175, all nights.  Winter. Tel (021) 876-3386

*   Salmon Bar, Franschhoek: 3-course dinner plus glass of Porcupine Ridge R150, Fridays and Saturdays.  Winter. Tel (021) 876-4591.

*   Mange Tout, Mont Rochelle Hotel, Franschhoek:  2-courses plus glass of wine R150, 3-courses plus glass of wine R190, Winter Brunch Buffet plus glass of bubbly R150.  Winter. Tel (021) 876-3000.

*   Fyndraai, Solms Delta, Franschoek.  2-course Sunday Lunch Buffet R125. Tel (021) 874-3937.

Paarl

*   Laborie Restaurant in Paarl: 5 food portions each paired with wine R395.  Winter. Tel (021) 807-3095

*   Freedom Hill: 10 % off discount with Loyalty Card.  Closed July and August.  Winter. Tel (021) 867-0963

*   Bosman’s, Grande Roche, Paarl: 2-courses R120, 3-courses R155.  Monday – Sunday lunch.  Until April (except 20 December – 10 January). Tel (021) 863-5100.

Stellenbosch

*   Olivello, Klapmuts, outside Stellenbosch: 2-course meal R115, 3-course meal R135 plus glass of wine.  Winter. Tel (021) 875-5443

*   96 Winery Road, Stellenbosch: 3-course lunch and dinner from a la carte menu (with a few surcharges), with glass of Ken Forrester Chenin Blanc or Petit Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot, R180, Winter; 4-course Chocolate dinner in conjunction with Lindt Chocolate Studio.  R300. 15 June. Tel (021) 842-2020

*   Warwick, Stellenbosch:  Tapas menu range R15 – R45 per dish. Winter. Tel (021) 884-4410

*   Dornier Bodega, Stellenbosch: Meat-free Mondays, Comfort Tuesdays, Pasta Wednesdays, Soup Thursdays, Fish Fridays, all R79, lunch, May – September, Tel (021) 880-0557

*   Towerbosch Restaurant, Knorhoek Wine Estate, Stellenbosch:  Soup & Bredie Menu with soup and bredie R90, Wednesdays – Saturdays; Asado Argentian-style braai on Sundays R165.  May – August. Tel (021) 865-2958

*   Tokara Restaurant, Stellenbosch: Chef’s Menu - 3 courses and amuse bouche and palate cleanser R225.  From 10 May, during winter. Tel (021) 885-2550

*   Jordan Restaurant with George Jardine, Stellenbosch: 1-course meal with glass of wine R95; 4-course meal with 2 glasses of wine R 225. Tuesday – Saturday lunch, Thursday and Friday dinners.  From 10 May in winter.  Tel (021) 881-3612

*   Terroir, Kleine Zalze estate:  2-courses R170, 3-courses R195.  Includes glass of Kleine Zalze wine.   May – September. Monday – Saturday lunch and dinner,  Sunday lunch.  Closed 1 – 11 July. Tel (021) 880-8167

*   Restaurant Christophe, Stellenbosch:  4-course dinner R150 Tuesday – Saturday.  Inexpensive Bistro lunches Tuesday – Friday.  Closed down 24 June. Tel (021) 886-8763

*   Overture, Stellenbosch: 2-course meal R 160.   Winter, but closed in July.  Tel (021) 880-2721

*   Wild Peacock Food Emporium, 32 Piet Retief Str, Stellenbosch: 3-course dinner and glass of wine R140.  Wednesday evenings. Winter. Tel (021) 887-7585

*   Delaire Graff, Helshoogte Pass, Stellenbosch : 3-course Organic Tasting Menu with 2 glasses of wine R295, Monday – Friday lunch, Wednesday – Friday dinner.  Winter. Tel (021) 886-8160

*   Johan’s at Longridge, Stellenbosch: 2-course lunch plus glass of wine R150.  Friday – Tuesday lunch (closed Wednesdays and Thursdays).  Winter. Tel (021) 855-2004.

*   Delheim, Knorhoek Road, Stellenbosch: 3-course Mushroom Week mushroom menu R120 for 3 courses and 3 glasses of Delheim wine.  Until 10 July.  Tel (021) 888-4607

Somerset West

*   Waterkloof, Somerset West: Receive a R100 voucher off for a meal in June, for meals in May.  Tel (021) 858-1491

Hermanus

*   Season in Hermanus: Sunday lunch roast from R65; Afval plus soup and glass of wine R65 on Wednesday for lunch or dinner; Lowest priced of two steaks ordered on Friday evenings is free.  August. Tel (028) 316-2854

*   The Class Room, Hermanus: 3-course Sunday lunch R130.  Winter. Tel (028) 316-3582

*   Rossi’s Italian Restaurant, Hermanus: Half price pizza and pasta Mondays;  free bottle of house wine for table of 2 or more on Wednesdays; Children under 4 eat free on Thursdays. Winter.  Tel (028) 312-2848

*   Mediterrea, Hermanus: 50 % off all main courses, Sunday – Thursdays.  Until 31 August. Tel (028) 313-1685

*   Joe’s Restaurant, Stanford: Abalone Buffet (abalone fritters, sausage, scotch eggs, burgers, curry, samoosas, and lasagne) R95, daily lunch. Winter. Tel (028) 3410 662

Plettenberg Bay

*   Nguni - Friday dinner special R50.  Every Friday.  Winter. Tel (044) 533-6710

POSTSCRIPT 5/5: TV presenter Liezel van der Westhuizen has praised her Restaurant Special meal at Blowfish as follows: “Thank you for your HotWinter specials on your site, tried out the lunch special at BlowFish, it was good value for money xoxo”

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage

Copyright: Whale Cottage Portfolio

One of the exciting things about winter is that a number of restaurants are offering excellent value Gourmet evenings, with top wine makers presenting their wines, paired with special dishes prepared by the chefs of the restaurants.  It is a shame that some of the dates clash.

The Pavilion at The Marine Hotel, Hermanus

6 May:   Bouchard Finlayson Winery

3 June:   Paul Cluver Wines

1 July:   Klein Constantia Wine Estate

5 August:   Creation Wines

2 September:   Hamilton Russell Vineyards & Southern Right

The 5-course dinners, paired with wines, cost R 320 per person.  Tel (028) 313-1000

The Grand Café Camps Bay

11 May:   Peter Falke Wines

15 June:   Stellekaya

13 July:   Haute Cabriere

The 3-course food and wine pairing dinner costs R300.  Tel (021) 438-4253 NOTE THAT THE RESTAURANT IS CLOSED UNTIL END JULY, CONTRADICTING THE NOTICE ABOUT THE PAIRINGS THEY SENT

The Grand on the Beach

18 May:   Antonij Rupert Wines

22 June:   Ernst Gouws & Co

20 July:   Peter Falke

The 3-course food and wine pairing dinner costs R300.  Tel (021) 425-0551

Bosman’s, Grande Roche Hotel, Paarl

27 May:   AA Badenhorst Family Wines with winemaker Adi Badenhorst

10 June:   The House of Krone with winemaker Matthew Krone

22 July:   Glen Carlou with winemaker Arco Laarman

26 August:   Backsberg with winemaker Guillaume Nell

3 September:   Nederburg Auction Pre-dinner with cellarmaster Razvan Macici

28 October:   Raats Family Wines with winemaker Bruwer Raats

The 5-course meal with wine, coffee, canapés and petit fours costs R690.  Tel (021) 863-5100

The Garden Room, Mount Nelson Hotel

29 April:   Vergelegen with winemaker Andre van Rensburg

27 May:   Bouchard Finlayson with winemaker and owner Peter Finlayson

24 June:   Neil Ellis Wines with owner Neil Ellis

29 July:   Groote Post with winemaker Lukas Wentzel

26 August:   Rust en Vrede with winemaker Coenie Snyman

30 September:   Deetlefs with winemaker Willie Stofberg

28 October:   Boschendal with winemaker Lizelle Gerber

15 November:   Moreson with winemaker Clayton Reabow

9 December:   Boekenhoutskloof with winemaker Marc Kent.

The 7-course dinner costs R 395 per person with matching wines.  Tel (021) 483-1000

Chenin Wine Bar and Restaurant

26 May:   Ernie Els Wines

Cost is R 100. Tel (021) 425-2200

Buitenverwachting

28 April: Buitenverwachting winemaker Brad Paton

Cost of the 5-course meal is R460.  Tel (021) 794-3522

Nobu at One&Only Cape Town

29 April:   Stark-Condé Wines

Cost of the 7-course meal is R R480.   Tel (021) 431-5111

What’s On, Watson Street

7 May:   Fleur du Cap winemaker Christoff de Wet

Cost of the 6-course dinner and wines is R300 per person or R500 per couple.  Tel (021) 422-5652

Marika’s, Gardens

9 May:   Mischa and Eventide

6 June:   Barton Wines winemaker JP Geyer

4 July:   Nabygelegen with winemaker James McKenzie

Cost of 5-course dinner and wines is R 200.  Tel (021) 465-2727

1800°C Grill Room, Cape Royale Luxury Hotel

7 May:   Hartenberg Estate

2 June:  Morgenhof

7 July:   Warwick wine estate

4 August: La Motte Wine Estate

Cost of 4-course dinner with welcome drink and wines R335.  Tel (021) 430-0506

Casa Nostra, Sea Point

28 May:   Fairview

2 July:   Klein Constantia

Cost of 4-course meal R230.  Tel (021) 433-0187

Bergkelder, Stellenbosch

30 June:   Fleur du Cap Unfiltered

Cost of 5-course meal, Wine and Flavoured Salt tasting by Craig Cormack of Sofia’s is R400.  Tel (021) 809-8025

French Toast

22 June: L’Avenir Vineyards

6 July:   Constantia Glen

3 August :  Diemersdal

7 September:   Creation Wines

5 October:   Rustenberg Wines

Cost of 3-course Tapas and wine pairing R 220 per person.  Tel (021) 422-3839.

24 August: Overgaauw vintage port pairing (with David van Velden) with food, R80.  Tel (021) 422-3839

Café BonBon, Franschhoek

8 June:  Jacoline Haasbroek from My Wyn

22 June:   Haut Espoir

4-course dinner and wine pairing R195 per person.  Tel (021) 876-3936

La Mouette, Sea Point

8 June:  Arco Laarman from Glen Carlou

4-course French theme dinner R240 per person. Tel (021) 433-0856

Swiss & Austrian Social Club, Sea Point

11 June:   Waverley Hills Organic Wines

5-course dinner paired with five wines R250.  Tel (021) 434-8405

Fork

19 July:   Joubert-Tradauw

9-course emal paired with wines R225.  Tel (021) 424-6334

15 on Orange

21 July:  Warwick wines

6-course meal paired with wines R295.  Tel (021) 469-8000

Knife Restaurant

27 July: Glenwood Wines

4-course meal paired with wines R220.  Tel (021) 551-5000

Warwick Wine Estate

22 and 29 July: 4-course dinner paired with Warwick wines, celebrating Stellenbosch Wine Festival.  R390. Tel (021) 884-4410

The Class Room, Hermanus

12 August: Rust en Vrede

3-course dinner paired with wines R195.  Tel (028) 316-3582

Harvey’s at Winchester Mansions

3 August: Avontuur Wine Estate

5-course dinner paired with 7 Avontuur wines R345. Tel (021) 434-2351

5 October: Luddite

5-course dinner paired with 6 Luddite wines at R345 per person Tel (021) 434-2351

Sinn’s, Wembley Square

25 August: Durbanville Hills with winemaker Wilhelm Coetzee

4-course dinner paired with 4 wines R225.  Tel (021) 465-0967

Pure Restaurant, Hout Bay Manor

24 September:   Groote Post wine estate

5-course dinner paired with wines R 260.  Tel (021) 791-9393

96 Winery Road

28 September:   Van Ryn’s

4-course dinner paired with Van Ryn’s brandy R320.  Tel (021) 842-2020

Cassia Restaurant, Nitida wine estate, Durbanville

30 September:  Nitida wines

4-course dinner paired with Nitida wines R 300.  Tel (021) 976-0640

Bayside Café, Camps Bay

30 September: Beyerskloof Wines

5-course dinner paired with Beyerskloof Wines R 175 per person.  Tel (021) 438-2650

Clos Malverne, Stellenbosch

28 October: Clos Malverne wines

5-course dinner paired with Clos Malverne wines R 445.  Tel (021) 865-2022

La Residence, Franschhoek

18 November: Waterford Wines with winemaker Francois Haasbroek

6-course Dinner paired with Waterford wines R 800.  Tel (021) 876-4100

The Vineyard Hotel

Friday 13 May

Schalk Burger & Sons

Friday 27 May

Warwick & Vilafonté

Friday 10 June

West Coast Wines with Tierhoek

Friday 24 June

Stellakaya with Ntsiki Biyela

Friday 1 July

La Motte

Friday 15 July

Solms Delta Wine Estate

Friday 5 August

Dombeya Wines with Rianie Strydom

Friday 19 August

Catherine Marshall Wines

Friday 2 September

Meerlust Wine Estate

Friday 16 September

Favourites from Wine Concepts

Friday 7 October

Hermanuspietersfontein

Friday 21 October

Wines from the Swartland (Kloovenburg, Babylon’s Peak)

Friday 28 October

Constantia Valley Wines

The dinner costs R 250 per person.  Tel (021) 657-4500.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio:  www.whalecottage.com Twitter: @WhaleCottage

I had heard about the newly opened Illyria Coffee Concepts in the recently refurbished and modernised Eikestad Mall in Stellenbosch, well-positioned next door to Woolworths.   It is the most stylish coffee shop I have seen in a long time (the last contender for this accolade, Black at 15 on Orange, has closed down).   It serves a collection of stylish cakes and other sweet treats, but disappoints on the savoury side.

The coffee brand Illy dominates visually, and the decor theme is red and white.  There are beautiful white leather chairs and tables, the tables perhaps a little too low for the chairs, and the food is served with very stylish Abert cutlery, a material serviette and small Peugeot salt and pepper pots (I have also seen Peugeot at the Planet Restaurant and at Delaire Graff Restaurant).  

The cakes, muffins and cupcakes are beautifully made, and come from a supplier in Franschhoek.   I was disappointed with my baguette, filled with cheese, tomato, lettuce and cucumber, although tasty and not expensive at R29, did not match the style standard of the sweet treats served at Illyria, and was just presented on a white plate with potato chips out of a packet, which I did not eat, and defeated the choice of the healthy baguette filling.

The menu is printed on a laminated hard board.  What is clever is a number of well-priced combination offers, each including a cup of coffee/cappuccino/tea.  So, for example, a muffin, a small chocolate cupcake and a small carrot cupcake, with the beverage, costs R25; chocolate nut cake, lemon meringue and the beverage costs R45;   chocolate brownie and beverage R30; carrot cake, chocolate cake, baked cheese cake and the beverage costs R 35; and a carrot cupcake, beautiful looking Belgian white chocolate cupcake and the beverage costs R40.    Individual cake slices are charged at R27 – R35.   Salads start at R39 for a salad made with vegetables, and costs R45 if made with pasta or meat.   Sandwiches start at R29, and cost R36 when filled with meat.  A cappuccino is well-priced at R13, teas cost R11, muffins R15, and croissants cost R16 served plain, or R26 when filled with cheese and ham.  Deliveries are done to other businesses in the Eikestad Mall and surrounding area.

Illyria is owned by a family collection of brother Ramon Corie (not the friendliest restaurateur, in my experience of his Manouche, a Lebanese restaurant in the same street in Stellenbosch), sister Shaan and brother-in-law Richard Gaybba, and sister Tamsyn Pienaar.  I was impressed with the Illyria Loyalty Card which I received when paying the bill, offering a free coffee for every 10.

I was impressed with the decor, and I am sure that the new menu that is being worked on will look at improving the savoury offerings and presentation.  It is a very comfortable modern place to relax in, and well airconditioned for the Boland heat.

Illyria Coffee Concepts, upstairs, Eikestad Mall, Andringa Street, Stellenbosch.  Tel (021) 886-8522.  No website.  Open Monday – Friday 8h30 – 18h00, Saturday – Sunday 8h30 – 14h00.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.com  Twitter: @WhaleCottage

The frantic building of new hotels for the World Cup has led to an oversupply of hotel rooms, says Arthur Gillis, CEO of Protea Hotels, reports Business Report.

The oversupply is so bad that Gillis predicts that some hotels will go out of business, or will be converted into flats or old-age homes.   Gillis says his company has been approached by hotels, to be taken over by Protea.  Branded hotels with international marketing arrangements will be the only ones to survive the hotel accommodation glut, Gillis said.  According to Gillis, the recessionary depressed America and Europe will make itself felt in the local accommodation industry for another twelve months. 

The Protea Hotel’s 15 on Orange is only now starting to attract larger numbers of tourists, including film crews, having been open for a year already.

Gillis says that delighted World Cup soccer fans that visited Cape Town three months ago will not be coming back this season, but they will recommend the city to friends and family.  ”People in the UK are getting fed up with austerity and some will probably decide they would like to go abroad this year, to somewhere different, particularly if airfares stay at reasonable levels” he said.

Chris von Ulmenstein, Whale Cottage Portfolio: www.whalecottage.comTwitter: @WhaleCottage