Wondering where to eat out tonight? Here’s our update on The Best Restaurants In South Africa (South Africa’s restaurant guides), plus where to go for restaurant and food news, features, recipes and more.
Checkout Our Selected Best Restaurants In South Africa Below:
Salt, Cape Town
Book ahead to ensure you get one of the tables by the floor to ceiling picture windows with their breathtaking views and get there for early evening tapas and fizz while you watch the sun set across the Atlantic Ocean while the waves crash on the rocks beneath. Modern, sleek and very sexy with a South African/French inspire menu, Salt has all the ingredients for seduction.
Tel: +27 21 439 7258
Address: Ambassador Hotel, 34 Victoria Road, Bantry Bay, Cape Town, Western Cape
Open daily for lunch (12:00 – 15:00) and from 19:00 for dinner, with pre-dinner drinks served in the SALT bar lounge.
The Test Kitchen(Woodstock, Cape Town)
Open since: 2010
Position in the Top 10 last year: 1
The unstoppable Luke Dale-Roberts triumphs for the sixth consecutive year, with Ryan Cole alongside him in the kitchen and food that’s better than ever. While dining at the country’s best restaurant might be intimidating for some, guests will be delighted to discover that the experience here is not over-the-top nor excessively elaborate – it feels like the easiest thing in the world. From the ‘dark’ room to the ‘light’ room, expect show-stopping dishes that will take you on a culinary journey from Peru to Japan then right back to South Africa. Standout dishes include ceviche with stinging nettle granita, savoury billionaire’s shortbread with dark chocolate and duck, seared scallops with cauliflower and cheese, and pork belly with smoked chestnut.
“Luke’s exquisite style and the intense flavour of ingredients are out of the ordinary and deliver a phenomenal experience,” says head judge Abigail Donnelly.
La Colombe (Constantia, Cape Town)
Open since: 1995
Position in the Top 10 last year: 2
This globally recognised and locally celebrated restaurant keeps hitting high notes with its theatrical touches and flavourful food. Chefs Scot Kirton and James Gaag deliver with dishes like the famed tinned tuna; a triumphant dish of springbok beneath a paper-thin sheet of brik pastry with miso and chestnut; and Wagyu bone marrow with truffle and herbs on toast. A dessert of rose, strawberry and white chocolate ends things off in a delightfully subtle way.
“Delight in a multi-sensory adventure of remarkable dishes and flavour combinations,” says head judge Abigail Donnelly.
Buitenverwachting Restaurant, Cape Town
A stunning historic winery with a Cape-Dutch mansion, rolling parklands and shady oaks, a gourmet chef who loves to experiment and create magical combinations such as quail saltimbocca with green asparus, truffle vinaigrette, and carbonara parfait or pan-fried crayfish with a minted ricotta ravioli and lemongrass-ginger foam. Although romantic at night, this is one of few places where it may be better to come for lunch – or come on a Sunday when there is a brunch buffet.
Tel: +27 21 794 3522
Address: Buitenverwachting, Klein Constantia Road, Constantia, Cape Town
Open Monday – Saturday Lunch: 12.00 – 15.00, Dinner: 19.00 – 21.30; The Courtyard: Monday – Sunday Lunch: 12.00 – 15.00 Monday – Saturday Tapas: 15:00 – 17:00.
Part of the Tsala Treetop Lodge, set amidst lush coastal forest, partway between Knysna and Plettenberg Bay on the Garden Route, Zinzi’s typifies the best of African chic, with its opulent use of organic earthy tones, lush textures – suede and leather, velvet and metal – while the food takes simple favourites such as the hamburger to gourmet heights. It has more than earned its coveted Relais & Chateaux badge. Comfortable, plush and sophisticated, all the senses are in for a treat.
Tel: +27 44 532 8228
Address: Pear Tree Farm, Harkerville, Plettenberg Bay
Open daily for lunch and dinner
The only revolving restaurant in the southern hemisphere, the Roma sits on the 32nd floor of John Ross House, 105m up in the air, with breathtaking panoramic views across the city and harbor of Durban. Under Italian ownership, the food is classic Italian, with both seafood and game on the menu. They also pride themselves on having one of the finest dessert trolleys in the Durban area with some real show-off spectaculars, such as Baked Alaska and Crêpes Suzette alongside Italian favorites like cassata.
Tel: +27 31 368 2275
Address: Margaret Mncadi Street, 32nd Floor John Ross House, Esplanade, Durban
Open Mon–Sat 12.00–14.30, 18.00–12.30, closed Sun.
Ile Maurice, Umhlanga
This well-established local landmark is a family affair, run by brothers Robert and Jean Dauvis while mother Elsie reigns supreme in the kitchen. They have been creating magnificent classic French food, with touches of Creole and Mauritian sunshine for nearly 20 years. However it is more recently that they moved out of Durban to this restored mansion with an outdoor terrace for a perfect seaview. Advance booking advised, particularly if you want to sit outside.
Tel: +27 31 561 7609
Address: 9 McCausland Crescent, Umhlanga Rocks, Kwazulu-Natal
Open Tuesday – Sunday: Lunch 12.00 – 15.00, Dinner 18.30 – 22.15
Roots, near Johannesburg
Set in a private game park, about 40 mins drive from Sandton, near the Cradle of Humankind, Roots has become a true destination restaurant for Gauteng foodies. Regularly listed as one of the top 10 restaurants in the country, prepare for gourmet four-course lunch or six-course dinner with serene views across the African bush. Head chef Allistair Lawrence uses French, African and Asian influences. You also have the option of carefully selected wine teasers to match each dish. If you want a drink, spend a night in the sumptuous Forum Homini boutique hotel, and try the three course breakfast or Saturday brunch.
Tel: +27 11 668 7000
Address: Letamo Game Estate, Bartlet Road, Kromdraai, Mogale City
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily.
The Pot Luck Club(Woodstock, Cape Town)
Open since: 2013
Position in the Top 10 last year: Nominee
This iconic Woodstock eatery by Luke Dale-Roberts with Frederico Dias in the kitchen cracks the Top 10 again thanks to its exciting and punchy play with flavours and trendy tapas-style experience. A visit to The Pot Luck Club isn’t quite complete without biting into the iconic fish tacos, or the beef fillet with café au lait sauce. Other high points include the chickpea, goat’s cheese and parmesan fries; fish sliders with amasi and maize meal; and earthy shredded confit duck leg with fresh plums. The famed s’mores with roasted frozen marshmallows and peanut-butter ice cream are a perfect way to sign off the meal.
“Flavour, flavour, flavour! Small plates are exquisitely plated and the experience is quite ethereal and very cosmopolitan,” says head judge Abigail Donnelly.