Giorgio Nava Offers Italian Chic

Cape Town's Italian restaurant that's strictly for carnivores

Giorgio Nava, well-known chef and proprietor of Cape Town’s award winning 95 Keerom, is spreading his Milanese flair with the opening of his second signature restaurant – Carne SA – situated directly opposite 95’s front door in Keerom Street.

Dedicated entirely to meat as is evident from its Italian name, Carne SA is a carnivore’s paradise serving a unique offering of the finest cuts of Romagnola beef, Dorper lamb and game, all organically grown on Giorgio’s own Karoo farms.

Stylish Italian in the heart of the city
In partnership with Chef Carl Penn and Restaurant Manager Gunter Boisits, his original opening team for 95 Keerom in 2003, Giorgio has created a stylish new Italian eatery in the heart of the city.

“It has taken us a long time to develop this space for our meat restaurant as we wanted to create something exceptional from both a design and quality viewpoint that would have longevity and style to match our food,” said an elated Giorgio whose meticulous attention to detail delayed the opening by almost a year.

Carne SA’s singular split-level concept and Italian butcher shop design create a vibrant after-work meeting place with the modish bar lounge serving a wide range of wines by the glass as the focal point, and the ultra-contemporary 70-seater restaurant below.

The design, inspired by the building’s original construction of wood and steel interiors, are melded with elements found in a traditional Italian butchery ,such as Carrara marble surfaces, butcher blocks, the retro-style Italian meat slicer and solid oak tables.

Sleek original Philippe Starck Ghost chairs and stylish Italian bathroom fittings juxtaposed against raw wood finishes add an ultra-modern touch to this trendy basement space.

Original Italian butcher's paper
The menu – printed on original Italian butcher’s paper – offers a wide selection of classic Italian fare and introduces new meat alternatives to well-known 95 Keerom favourites such as tongue carpaccio and the signature slow-baked lamb ravioli. Traditional dishes such as Bollito Misto, a rare north Italian speciality of mixed boiled meats, underlines the absolute authenticity of the menu.

Followers of Giorgio’s cuisine are familiar with his unflinching use of only the finest, freshest ingredients, serving vegetables grown specially for his restaurant and fish caught from his own fishing boat.

Heaven for meat lovers
Meat lovers have the opportunity to enjoy Giorgio’s own organically grown meat served with his ubiquitous Milanese panache. As one of only six breeders in South Africa of Romagnola cattle, which originate from the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy, Giorgio is very proud of his herd which thrives on his farm, Towerwater, near Murraysburg in the Karoo.

Besides their Italian origin, Giorgio chose to farm with Romagnola for their exceptional quality beef and ability to thrive in the toughest environments. The meat has a superior taste with a light rosy-red colour, fine texture and excellent marbling, ideal for the finest fillet, T-bone, sirloin, rib eye and rump.

But Carne SA is not just about steak. It has a wide selection of classic Italian antipasti and pastas, while the grill section includes marinated leg of lamb, pork, chicken and game dishes in addition to the prime beef cuts. All the game is supplied by Giorgio’s other Karoo farm, Wilgebosch near Nieu-Bethesda, and dishes include kudu tartare and black wildebeest fillet.

The Italians’ love of “frattaglie” or the “5th cut” as Giorgio refers to organ meats, is well represented on the menu. In step with the growing international trend to use as much of the animal as possible, Giorgio has created a variety of new dishes such as poached tongue carpaccio, calves liver, veal kidneys and pan fried sweetbread. 

While Carne SA is unashamedly dedicated to meat lovers, the menu does include a small selection of delicious vegetarian antipasti and pasta dishes.

Dessert... yum!
The dessert menu is a collection of traditional Italian dolci ranging from crema cotta (baked cream) and crème caramel to a refreshing selection of Italian ice creams and sorbets. A 95 Keerom favourite, the dark Italian chocolate soufflé, takes centre stage amongst the sweet indulgences.  

Carne SA is situated at 70 Keerom Street and is open for dinner every evening from Mondays to Saturdays.

For more news about new restaurants in Cape Town, read our Wine and Dine section and subscribe to our Editor’s Picks Newsletter .

Cape Town is well known for its superb restaurants with a wide choice of everything from sushi to steak.

Have a read through our Restaurants Section for a selection of fine dining in Cape Town and we will guarantee an evening that will entise your senses.

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