Words: Kit Heathcock | Images: Supplied & Natasha Lassen
Mixologist Kurt Schlechter says he will forever be a student of bartending as there is always something new to learn about this compelling subject. He’s won many global bartending and mixology awards over the years since being one of the first South Africans to compete in the Legends of Bartending Las Vegas Competition back in 1998.
Nowadays he’s more often a judge on the panel of competitions and awards such as World’s 50 Best Bars and KWV Brandy Reimagined. Last year, together with fellow bartender James Phillips, he opened the cutting-edge Cause Effect, an experiential bar in Cape Town’s Gardens.
Originally from Cape Town, he spent 10 years based in Joburg before moving back to Cape Town with his family four years ago.
Home sweet home
When deciding on which part of Cape Town to settle in, Kurt and his family were drawn to the beaches of the Western Seaboard suburbs. “We first rented in Dolphin Beach when we came back and immediately knew we wanted to settle in the Table View area,” says Kurt. “We looked at about 20 houses before finding the one! From the minute we walked in, we just knew it will be our home. It’s an older house in the ‘Winelands’ area of Table View and we just saw the potential the house had. The massive garden and pool was a bonus!”
The family-friendly lifestyle is a big part of the attraction of Table View for Kurt, with adjoining Bloubergstrand and the other beach suburbs only a short drive away. “We love spending time at the beach. From building sand castles and surfing, to cycling along the promenade. And we love going for sundowners and dinners at the beachfront. There’s a great selection of restaurants in Table View and surrounds.”
Life in Table View isn’t only about the beach. There are plenty of parks and open spaces where Kurt and his family enjoy taking their Weimaraner for a bit of run too. The best part of living in Table View is right there in the name. “Views! Views! Views! It doesn’t matter if you’re driving to work early on a Monday morning or sitting in traffic in the afternoon, you always have breathtaking views of Table Mountain.”
Gems in the neighbourhood
There are plenty of local eateries along the beachfront and clustered around Marine Circle where Table View meets Blouberg. “For family days out, we like Black Bull in West Beach and Doodles on the Blouberg beachfront because they are so child-friendly,” says Kurt.
“When it’s just my wife and I, we enjoy going for dinner at Homespun and tequilas at Pakalolo. Homespun is definitely one of our neighbourhood gems. Matt and his team really brought fine dining to the area with their creative, out of this world menus.”
As a family, they also enjoy the community feel of the area. “There are beach clean-ups that happen often and it’s a great way to get involved and help save our beautiful marine life.”
“Weather permitting, the beach is always our go-to for fun family Sundays out,” says Kurt. There’s the whole length of Blouberg beach and the promenade, the rock pools at Bloubergstrand to explore, then the more sheltered Little Bay for child-friendly beach play and Big Bay for more water sports and beach time.
“Ons Huisie and Blue Peter are some of our top picks for lazy Sunday lunches,” he adds. When not heading to the beach, Table View is also perfectly placed for exploring inland. “We are just a hop, skip and jump away from some really great wine farms which are also a favourite Sunday outing for us.”
“Table View is so central to everything. We love spending time at the beach which is a two-minute drive away, and it’s a short trip to both town and the beautiful Winelands.”
About Kurt Schlechter:
Mixologist, drinks consultant, public speaker and author, Kurt Schlechter has competed globally in bartending and mixology competitions over the years. Today, he specialises in corporate teambuilding, whiskey and brandy tastings, and bartender training and is a judge for The World’s 50 Best Bars. He recently opened an experiential cocktail bar Cause Effect in Cape Town.
Homespun: creative and informal fine dining
Black Bull: steaks and a kids’ play area
Blue Peter: sundowners and Sunday lunches
Ons Huisie: Seafood and classic local dishes in a historic beachside house
Doodles: seafood, steaks and a bar
Pakalolo: Mexican food, tequilas and cocktails
Kitesurfing, SUP, surfing and other water sports at Blouberg beach
Sailing, windsurfing and boating at Rietvlei
Wine tasting in the Durbanville Wine Valley
Cycling and dog-walking along the Blouberg promenade
Sundowners at one of the beach bars or anywhere along the whole stretch of beach