Three neighbourhood eateries that put Pinelands firmly on the foodie map
A genuinely warm welcome, pride in the quality of their offering and mouthwatering menus are what these three restaurants have in common, and they’re all in Pinelands.
Combining a craft brewery with a Texan-style smokehouse barbeque restaurant was an inspired move. A relaxed vibe with beer tastings fuelled by PJ Vadas’s excellent food, brings customers to Ndabeni, Pinelands, from all over Cape Town. If nose to tail eating is your thing, the crunchy sticky pig tails and black pudding scotch eggs are sublime, for vegetarians the wild mushroom arancini are equally moreish. Next up, thick slices of the slow-smoked meats (brisket, lamb and pork spare ribs), and colourful sides, from charred butternut with maple syrup and pecans to a varied cauliflower and goat cheese dish worthy of being a vegetarian main. And save room for the pastéis de nata, a dreamy melting custard tart from the Hoghouse bakery.
Ezio De Biaggi and Franco Zezia have been at the helm of best-known restaurant in Pinelands for 29 years. “We have clientele that have been coming all these years and now their children are coming, too,” says Franco. The secret of their success is an unwavering commitment to quality seasonal ingredients long before seasonal was a buzzword, and regulars know to ask about improvised dishes that are not on the menu. With true Italian dedication to the seasons, they hunt down porcini mushrooms in autumn, serve up porchetta for special occasions, and their antipasto platters loaded with prosciutto, calamari, brinjals, buffalo mozzarella and more are popular.
This unpretentious new seafood restaurant was started by chef Dylan Paioni last year. “I’m from an Italian family, so food was always important, and working at Île de Pain in Knysna taught me always to aim for perfection.” Dylan makes his own fresh pasta daily for the voluptuous seafood pastas, plates all his dishes beautifully with the prettiest flower-decorated salads, and only uses sustainable fresh fish from top Cape Town suppliers. Luscious oysters, mussels and calamari and generous two-course specials on Mondays and Tuesdays have already won him an enthusiastic local following.
Hoghouse Brewing Company
021 810 4545
021 531 1489
081 558 6450