We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Recession bites (pun intended)

In cooperation with: Cape Town Tourism
Belfast
Level Contributor
1,965 posts
82 reviews
Save Topic
Recession bites (pun intended)

Sorry to have to report another significant restaurant closure in Cape Town with the demise of Nova.

I never went there and it didn't really sound like my cup of tea, but there does seem to be a worrying level of restaurant closures in CT at the moment.

durban
Level Contributor
1,951 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

We have just got notice the Sumo's (brilliant Sushi bar)is about to close and Society (as the name intends) has closed.

durban
Level Contributor
1,951 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

Sorry the last two are in Durban, in case people are confused.

cape town
Destination Expert
for Cape Town
Level Contributor
6,131 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

Hi Belfast - the reason a lot of these restaurants are closing is that they cater only for the tourists - "meaning" that tourists come with hard currency such as the dollar, pound and euro whereas us S.Africans cannot afford the prices that the restaurants charge (with bad service included.) We find restaurants expensive whereas a lot of the posts I read from the tourists say "it was so cheap - its laughable" . Now that its winter a lot of the restaurants remain "empty" because most capetonians don't like going out in the cold and rain (they are not used to living in the U.K.) unless of course they have "winter specials" - and by that i mean "specials" not "specialities" as the one waiter thought i meant. It's about time the restaurants here started catering for the "locals" and by that I mean S. Africans. Those that do remain open, those that provide shocking service and ridiculous prices close. But the world wide recession has hit us too.

Cape Town, South...
Level Contributor
902 posts
1 review
Save Reply
4. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

Surprisingly..

THE WOODSTOCK TORCH BEARER is doing fantastically well. They have never advertised and is really the best kept secret in Cape Town. It is named in honour of Ken Kirckpatrick who was one of the torchbearers in the 1948 Olympics. The building belongs to his daughter but the restaurant is locally owned.

Here are the details:

THE WOODSTOCK TORCH BEARER

Sammy Robinson

9 Essex Street, Woodstock.

Tel.: 021 4472639

sammy@thetorchbearer.co.za

This is a great example of "local is lekker"...i'm heading there tommorrow night, again.

cape town
Destination Expert
for Cape Town
Level Contributor
6,131 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

capensis - what type of food do they serve at "The Torch Bearer"

Cape Town, South...
Level Contributor
902 posts
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

THE MENU VARIES ALL THE TIME...but it's your fish and steaks etc. during the week but on sundays and it's traditional foods like Boboti, malay curries, roast etc. It's in such a unique spot which is right next to (not everyone will understand)"Jou ma se Comedy Club" which is another great spot.

So the deal is ....you have a dinner at WTB and walk accross the road to see local comedy or Jazz. Both venues have a great bar.

cape town
Level Contributor
63 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

Going to try this one tonight! Sounds great..

cape town
Destination Expert
for Cape Town
Level Contributor
6,131 posts
149 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

I dont normally do restaurants in the Woodstock area but sounds interesting. Who is on at "Joe Ma's se comedy club" - sounds like a Pieter Dirk Uys sort of thing!

Cape Town
Level Contributor
10,195 posts
Save Reply
9. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

Hi Belfast

Yes Nova has just closed

and Riboville

and The Showroom

Chocolat

Rozenhof

Strega

The Nose

The Barnyard at Willowbridge

The whole Carlucci's chain of deli restaurants

.......

So is this a sign of economic collapase or maybe the inhabitants of Cape Town no longer eat out?

Well no! To more than balance this, the following restaurants have opened in about the same period :

Carne

Karibu at the Waterfront

Kove at Camps Bay

Nobu

Societi Bistro (new restaurant in Oranjenzicht)

The Bungalow

Pure at Hout Bay Manor

Headquarters at Heritage Square

Gordon Ramsey's Maze Grill

The Grand at Camps Bay

Meloncino at the Waterfront

Salero

F_SH (no I) at Kalk Bay

Bouillabaisse

Maharaj Indian in Hout Bay

1800 deg

...............

Add to these Delaire Graf, Cuvee and Jordan's in the winelands plus major refurbishments at places such as Balthazar, Catherina's at Steenberg and Willougbys.

Also consider that Cape Town/Winelands has five restaurants in the World Top 100 for the first time - La Colombe, The Tasting Room, Jardine, Aubergine and Rust en Vrede - ahead of very many of the other great cities of the world.

All this together does not indicate that the Cape Town Restarant Scene is shutting down but just the natural pace of change in Restaurants. As I posted a couple of weeks ago on another thread :

"But Restaurants change more than anything. Just had a quick look at a general Guide Book on my shelf from 1997 (12 years ago). Of the 44 Cape Town Restaurant listings 32 no longer existed. "Pubs" did better with 5 out of 9 still plying their trade under the same name in the same place.

Also, maybe surprisingly, only three of the eleven listings in Franschhoek still existed and two of those are very much changed. Only La Petite Ferme would still have been recognisable from the review."

As we have said before in these forums - look at the whole picture not just the headlines!

Hazyview, South...
Level Contributor
3,809 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Recession bites (pun intended)

sorry VdC but I had to laugh because what came into my mind was:

the devils advocat has got the last say. LOL

But for sure you are right (as nearly always). Well researched!!!

Klaus