Top 5 Bites in Cape Town, South Africa
By Lauren Melnick

Home to the best restaurant in Africa is probably not what most people think of when they consider travelling to Cape Town. Nor do most expect this quaint coastal city to have made it onto Trip Advisor’s Fine Dining Awards for two years in a row. But it’s not just our culinary prowess that makes Cape Town the foodie capital of South Africa – it is our culture. Traditional dishes are at the heart of our multi-cultural ancestry and is what makes exploring Cape Town by taste such a unique experience.

Here are the top cultural bites (and where to find them) to add to your Cape Town gastronomy bucket list.

Bunny Chow:

Bunny Chow, South Africa

It’s not often that you can taste a meal and say you have experienced a rich history lesson.

Bunny Chow, also known as Kota, is an Indian cuisine that came to South Africa along with the thousands of Indian labours that were brought to South Africa in the 19th Century. Over the years, it has gained popularity and made its way into mainstream South African cuisine.

It consists of half a loaf of bread hollowed out and filled with your choice of delicious curry. It’s a great choice if you are in need of some comfort food or if you are visiting Cape Town during the winter months.

Best place to eat it: The Haas Collective

Haas (which means rabbit in Afrikaans) has some of the best Bunny Chow in town that won’t break your budget. Choose from vegetable or chicken curry options that come with substantial portions.

Address: 19 Buitenkant St, Cape Town City Centre, Cape Town, 8001

Telephone: 021 461 1812

Photo Credit: The Haas Collective


If you leave Cape Town without trying this Cape Malay cuisine, you have not tasted Cape Town. It is a signature culinary style that is deep-rooted in South Africa’s history. The recipes were developed by Middle Eastern slaves that were brought to the Cape by the Dutch East India Company and have been handed down from generation to generation.

Bobotie is a meatloaf like dish that is filled with spiced meat, raisins and oven-baked with a layer of savoury egg on top to form a crust. Traditionally, it is served with yellow rice, banana slices and chutney.

Bobotie, South Africa

Best place to eat it: Bo-Kaap Kombuis

If you are looking for an authentic Cape Malay restaurant and experience – Bo-Kaap Kombuis will not disappoint.

The restaurant is renowned for its bobotie recipe and it has an excellent view of Table Mountain! Situated in the Bo-Kaap region of Cape Town, it also gives you the perfect excuse to go exploring the famous colourful houses dotted around the Bo-Kaap after lunch.

Address: 7 August Street, Bo-Kaap, Cape Town

Telephone: +27 (0)21 422-5446

Booking is advised.

Photo Credit:  Courtesy of Ina Paarman. Photography by Matt Keeson

Braai Meat:

Braai Meat, South Afirca

It’s hard to find a South African gathering where meat is not the star of the meal. Both Afrikaans and African cultures have braai’s (barbeques) heavily entrenched into their cooking repertoire. “Braaivleis” is such an important part of South Africa’s culture that it even has its own National Braai Day.

While lots of other countries around the world partake in barbeques – the thing that sets South Africa’s apart is traditions around braaing. It’s more than just cooking meat. It’s about coming together and socialising with your friends and family over a couple of drinks and a good meal.

Best place to eat it: Mzoli’s Place

The best place in Cape Town to experience authentic braai culture is at Mzoli’s Place. Situated in the township of Gugulethu, it’s known for its vibrant parties, diverse patronage and a signature secret mix of herbs and spices that make Mzoli’s home to some of the best braai meat you will ever taste.

Address: Ny 115, Guguletu, Cape Town, 7751

Telephone: +27 (0)21 638 1355.

Photo Credit: Stylist: Julia Baker, Photography: Matt Keeson


Snoek, South Afirca

It isn’t really a Cape Town braai without some snoek.

Being a coastal city, seafood plays a big part in Cape Town’s cuisine. One of the most popular dishes is smoked snoek. It is a regional Game fish that can be baked, poached, fried or smoked usually with chopped garlic in butter and occasionally apricot jam and lemon juice.

Best place to eat it: Snoekies

The best places to try snoek is at Snoekies in Kalk Bay. You can find this gem in Hout Bay, right by the harbour. Snoekies has been around since the 1950’s when founder Hans Mickeleit converted an old bus into a takeaway café. While it is most certainly not a fine dining experience, don’t let its simple appearance put you off. Snoekies will win you over with its delicious, fresh fish wrapped up in newspaper with chips and sizable portions.

Address: Harbour Rd, Hout Bay, Cape Town, 7806

Telephone: 021 790 6677

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Ina Paarman. Photography by Matt Keeson


Potjiekos, South Africa

Best place to eat it: Moyo Blouberg

Located on the shores of the West Coast, Moyo Blouberg is one of my favourite restaurants to go to for Potjiekos. The restaurant is well known for its authentic culture and delicious of African cuisine. It’s a great choice if you want to experience the flavours of Africa from Moroccan tagines to Tunisian baklava. And if that hasn’t sold your taste buds yet, on a clear day you can even see Robben Island just across the water.

Address: Shop 50 Eden on the Bay Shopping Centre, Corner of Otto Du Plessis and Big Bay Boulevard, Cape Town

Telephone: 021 286 0662

Booking ahead is recommended to avoid disappointment.

Photo Credit: Moyo Blouberg

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I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty hungry after writing this post! Which South African bite are you dying to taste? Let us know in the comments below!

Lauren Melnick
By Lauren Melnick

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