Cape eatery embraces old-school hotel dining - you should too
The Sunnyside Inn is making the most of set menus, writes Kit Heathcock
Upstairs, above vibey eatery Power and the Glory on Kloof Nek Road in Cape Town, a new dining experience is unfolding at Sunnyside Inn.
Emma Hofmans, head chef at Hallelujah is heading up the new concept, which takes its inspiration from the prix ﬁxe menus that you ﬁnd in the small towns of France.
“We’re very European, moving away from what we’re doing at Hallelujah. The whole concept of Sunnyside Inn is based on an old hotel. The food is what you’d get in an old-style hotel dining room, a prix fixe set menu, we’re playing with new ﬂavours and making it a bit more modern. But still with the white tablecloths and the classic silver cutlery.”
The beautiful old building with elegant wood staircase and wooden ﬂoors lends itself to the old hotel concept; the upstairs veranda that curves around the façade will be great for summer.
Having a set menu makes life simple. There are always vegetarian alternatives and a choice of two mains, otherwise you just sit down, unfold your linen napkin and relax as the shared serving plates arrive.
When we visited there was a French feel to the menu, a bowl of mussels as the simple starter with a freshly baked baguette to soak up the gorgeous wine-soaked juices, and a savoury bagna cauda butter.
The duck leg à la Clementine had a lovely hint of star anise, the skin crispy and rich in Cointreau and naartjie glaze.
We also had the excellent vegetarian main, a classic red onion tarte tatin, along with a host of sides, including a bright and zesty beetroot and celeriac remoulade, creamy potato and parsnip mash, and a gingered roast pumpkin.
A rich nougatine ice cream with pistachio caramel crisp and kumquat purée completed the meal.
The menu changes every two weeks and takes inspiration from all over Europe, springbok wellington being a previous favourite.
It’s still early days for the Sunnyside Inn, which is evolving as it goes, and there are plans to add an old-school bar on the top ﬂoor, which will serve a range of Italian inspired antipasti and ﬂatbreads cooked in the woodﬁred oven.
This article is adapted from one originally published in the Sunday Times Neighbourhood: Property and Lifestyle guides. Visit Yourneighbourhood.co.za