Cape to Cuba has been a restaurant I’ve wanted to visit since moving to Cape Town. The idea of sitting by the ocean, watching the waves and smoking a cigar definitely appealed to me. Unfortunately, I never found the time to venture to Kalk Bay. However, all I need was some motivation. That being relocating to Joburg. So I made it my mission to head to Cape to Cuba before I left the Mother City.
Cape to Cuba is located next to the train line, with an amazing view of the ocean and the harbour. The restaurant has a Cuban vibe to it, with chandeliers, and references to Ernest Hemingway and Che Guevara. Both the restaurant and the bar have this inviting feel.
We were met by a friendly waiter who let us wander from table to table until we found the right one. Guess it pays coming during a weekday and during lunch 😉 . He quickly took our drinks order: I had the Hibiscus Berry Cooler, which was very sweet due to the Monin Hibiscus extract and the lemonade. Still it was a refreshing drink. Janina had the Virgin Mojito, which is basically lemonade.
To eat Janina and I went overboard, against the better judgement of our waiter, who kindly informed us that we won’t finish all the food. But we were determined! We ordered a wide range of tapas:
First, we had the chili poppers which were spicy and sweet (thanks to the cream cheese). I love trying out chili poppers but I can never handle the heat. The barbecue sauce that accompanied the poppers helped by reducing the spiciness.
We then moved onto the potato peels with cream cheese and sweet chili sauce that helped with the heat of the poppers. I really underestimated those poppers. The peels were crispy and delicious, plus the sweet chili sauce added a great flavour.
Next was the three corn fritters which came with a sweet chili sauce. I must admit the size of the fritters amused me. They were much larger than I expected, which meant that the fritters were quite doughy.
The pan fried chorizo and olives were next. The chorizo was cooked well but I expected the chorizo to be spicy. The only spiciness came from the sauce. The olives were tasty and soft and paired well with the chorizo. The Cuban bread that accompanied it was quite dense but soaked up the sauce nicely, making it a great spoon 😛 .
Then we got our fingers messy with the sticky pork ribs. The ribs were delicious with a barbecue sauce and were tender. However, a finger bowl would’ve been appreciated to clean our fingers.
My favourite dish was the mussels, which I expected to be served in a thick, creamy sauce, but was pleasantly surprised with the creamy sauce it was served with. The sauce had wine, garlic and dill. Although it did taste like there was coconut milk as well.
Also delicious was the grilled calamari tubes, with paprika, capers and red peppers. The calamari was cooked well and was spicy. The capers added to the saltiness of the dish.
Lastly, we had the grilled sardines, which were very salty. The sardines were covered in coarse salt and Semolina. Honestly, I don’t enjoy sardines but Janina enjoyed them and even took them as takeaways.
My experience at Cape to Cuba was fantastic! The food was delicious, the staff friendly and sitting close to the beach added to the Cuban feel.
I give Cape to Cuba 2 cupcakes 🙂