Tag Archives: Gardens

Lazari – Cape Quarter

28 Jan

Gardens used to hold a very special place in my heart – not least because I lived in the towering block of the Gardens Centre, but also because it is the home of Lazari (think pink cupcakes and absolutely delicious breakfasts entailing french toast made out of croissants!) Now that I have moved, I find myself not popping into my old spot as often. How pleased I was to find that Lazari has opened a second restaurant in Green Point’s Cape Quarter. This new location is also open in the evenings and so the three Sarahs (yes, there are three of us and I could have invited at least two more!) took advantage of another beautiful Cape Town evening and opportunity for a good meal.

The new Lazari has kept the same fresh feeling of the original, with white decor and whorls of dots on the walls. As with the original, though, the menu has stayed better geared toward lunch and breakfast. Don’t get me wrong, all of us were able to find something yummy for supper, but the entire feeling of the menu is “light daytime”. The choices range from pasta to burgers and salads, with only one steak dish. The healthy Sarahs both opted for a special, goat’s cheese and date phyllo parcels on an apple salad. Strangely, the chef seemed to have forgotten the apple! The salad did however, include lots of avo and the parcels were melt-in-the-mouth tasty. I chose my regular safe bet of a chicken burger. I was presented with toasted ciabatta, filled with pieces of chicken breast with caramelised onions and mustard on the side. Not quite what I would define as a burger – but it was delicious. The chicken was tender and the onions stayed on the right side of sweet. Oh, and the chips were pretty good.

We paired out meal with a bottle of D’Aria Music Sauvignon Blanc. I’m no expert, but is was very drinkable and the price of only R85 suited my pocket. All in all, while the evening was pleasant and the service fairly efficient, I don’t think I will be going back to Lazari at night – the restaurant didn’t afford much of an atmosphere and I like to have a large variety of choices for dinner. Bring it on for breakfast, lunch and the amazing pink cupcakes, but I will save my night time jaunts for other places in Cape Town. Possibly Lazari should have stuck with the original concept in more ways than simply design and cupcakes?

Lazari, Cape Quarter – Cnr Upper Maynard & Vredehoek Ave,  021 461 9865, Breakfast R28+, Lunch and dinner R50 +, Monday-Tuesday 7.30-17.00, Wednesday-Saturday 8.00-22.00

Blonde

11 Aug

I love a bit of sophistication. I’m one of those girls who is as comfortable twirling a champagne flute as I am chugging a draft. Thank goodness Blonde satisfies my more refined side. My closest girlfriends and I have a dinner club. This year we changed from hosting each other in our homes to searching for the best deals in restaurants around town.

Blonde is spectacular. The ambience is relaxed, but has those lovely details like beautifully upholstered chairs and gorgeous thin-lipped wine glasses. Our waiter too made the evening, using words like, “soliloquy” when describing his specials speech. I’m a sucker for anyone who drops words like that into casual conversation.

 The food was delicious. I had a beautiful fillet infused with truffle oil, served with perfectly crispy risotto and parmesan balls. Wow, delish. The girls around me were equally delighted with their choices and a rare silence drifted over our table. Remember this is a group of 8 girls who have known each other for years, so silence is not easily accomplished!

 My pudding was a simple peach cobbler with vanilla mascarpone. The cinnamon flavours and the soft baked peach swirled in my mouth and it disappeared rather too quickly for my liking. With a sweet tooth like mine, though, this always seems to happen! I also sneaked a few tastes of Georgina’s chocolate fondant – heaven on a plate! I might have had food envy if the cobbler wasn’t so good. 

 Blonde does something special with their service– before the meal everyone receives an amuse-bouche (I love that word! It’s something to whet your appetite, or an amusement for your mouth, in French). It is a tiny ceramic shot glass of buttery butternut soup. If you order starter, then you also get a palate cleansing sorbet before your main course. And with the bill real chocolate truffles follow (this sure beats old Butterscotch sweeties in yucky plastic wrappers).

 But what about the deal you may ask? Well, the deal is that everything on the menu (yes, that includes the vino!) is 50% less for July and August. Unfortunately, this sounds rather less expensive than it works out to be, considering the full price for my steak would have been R190! I certainly would never pay that for a meal, but maybe other people aren’t English teachers without a second income off which to live!

 It may be expensive, but I think a special night, whether it’s with your partner or an old group of friends, can warrant a little extravagance. But, best head there this month so that you still have money left for your draft chugging on the weekend!

 Blonde: Corner Hatfield and Wandel Road, Gardens, 021 462 5793, Starters: R45+ Mains: R119-189 Dessert: R50-60