advertisement

As much culinary laboratory as kitchen, this is where Cape Town's esteemed chef Luke Dale-Roberts puts his flash-of-inspiration-in-the-middle-of-the-night recipes to the test. Menus can be unpredictable, but they're always adventurous. Dale-Roberts' penchant is for unexpected combinations: perhaps springbok with black pudding-stuffed sprouts, slow-roasted carrot, and venison jus, or wild mushroom and duck liver chawanmushi (a Japanese custard) with morel-glazed sweetbreads, a variety of onions, and burnt-thyme foam. Wow. Dale-Roberts spent several years taking his former project, La Colombe in Constantia, to the forefront of the international dining scene—critics were crossing hemispheres to put his menus to the test. Here, he's taken over a semi-industrial warehouse space and injected it with his own personality, which regularly spills out of the open kitchen. Bag a seat at the counter to witness his culinary bravado taking shape. Dinners are set menus (either five courses or gourmand), while lunch offers the option of a small a la carte selection. Note: Dinner reservations are essential, and need to be made several months in advance; lunch bookings may be easier to come by.