Kloof Street in Cape Town is a very busy place. It’s backed with shops, cafes and restaurants in the distance of about a kilometre.
My cousin Sal recently went to a newly opened restaurant there – something I’ve found much few of this year in South Africa (though my quest continues). So we agreed to meet her there for dinner, looking forward, as ever, to a new experience.
It’s a colonial-inspired restaurant and bar set in a magnificent Victorian house. I kept imagining what it must have been like to live there, with its huge windows, high ceilings and enormous rooms. Stunning!
Quirkily decorated with lots of interesting finishing touches, like a bar designed around old suitcases and trunks, it has that great subdued lighting that makes everyone look years younger while also making the menu that much harder to read…oh well, you can’t have everything.
After what has been a pretty indulgent few weeks of eating we decided to share some of their starters and sharing plates which we ordered all at once while requesting that they arrived at the table with some space between them. Which is just what they did so we were able to snack, chat and relax in what is a pretty chilled-out atmosphere.
The braised oxtail with parsnips and chilli jam were delicious little crispy parcels, a bit like croquettes. I love oxtail and the depth of flavours came through. Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside.
Then a version of what must be one of the most indulgent of comfort foods. The white fish brandade was basically a bowl of flaked, sweet white fish mixed with buttery mashed potato, spring onions and topped with a mustard cream drizzle. The sort of food you want to take with you, sink into a comfy sofa and eat with a spoon, all to yourself. Yum!
Bearing in mind we were aiming half-heartedly for a light dinner, the chicken liver parfait probably wasn’t the most practical of choices (no calories in here, huh). But it was absolutely mouthwateringly silken and served with simply the most delicious pear and apricot chutney. My mission (another one!) is to make chutney as good as this…watch this space.
We also went for a mixed skewer board of kingklip and chicken kebabs and lamb koftas. They were well marinated and tender.
And finally, a salad. Simple, perfectly executed with a fab honey mustard dressing. One of my bugbears about salads that have avo in them is that far too often you’ll get avo that just isn’t quite ripe. Avo that I wouldn’t eat at home…tonight it was the most perfectly sweet, ripe and rich avo you could wish for. And the eggs were well cooked too, with slightly soft yolks.
A good new discovery that’s quirky without being too weird, and is comfortable and relaxed. There’s also a lovely terrace at the front…it’s just catching the right evening when the wind isn’t blowing to really enjoy that al fresco dinner.
Kloof Street House is at 30 Kloof Street.