Taste 7 unique dishes (+ a surprise) at Taj Cape Town’s signature eatery
The Light Side Café
Indulge in the lighter side of life at this new, uber creative, vegan pop-up eatery
Sometimes it’s important to put your phone away and take time to appreciate the lighter side of life. That’s exactly what the new pop-up eatery, Light Side Café in De Waterkant, invites visitors to do at their quirky and colourful new space.
Not only is this an invite to fill your belly with something from their refreshingly innovative vegan menu, but there’s also the very important matter of the shopping space that surrounds the restaurant where you’ll find all sorts of treasures. We’re talking pencil sharpeners that look like noses, amethyst paperweights, or a 30cm-long bar of soap! Christmas shopping done, thanks very much.
The Cafe is housed in the Now Showing Building at 109 De Waterkant, and the whole space has been transformed to reflect a summer vibe. The delight is in the detail in this space, with every little thing carefully considered and curated; menus can be found on the first page of the books laid out on the tables, the water comes with an “It’s not made in China” label, and each dish is served with a touch of African flair and a pop of colour.
Vegan for the win
Masterfully designed, the menu offers a breakfast and lunch spread (all vegan). Breakfast includes a creative variety of bruschetta and toppings, which is served daily from 7am to 11am. The quirky names of the menu items are a little too risque for this space (so now you simply HAVE to discover them for yourself) but you can look forward to toppings like coriander hemp seed pesto, coconut oil cheese & crushed tomato, or speculoos butter, banana and toasted coconut flakes.
The four-course lunch menu (served from 12pm) is accompanied by a complimentary glass of Rosalie Rosé, a delicious wine which is made in pure traditional Provence style, with 50% Grenache, 15% Syrah, 35% CabFranc/Cab Sauv. The four courses consist of a starter, soup, something savoury and a sweet surprise (elegantly named “lolly for you dolly”).
Each ingredient on the vegan menu is a champion in own right. The idea behind the vegan menu was not to replace meat with “fake” substitutes, but rather to design each dish so that no meat is required to complete it. The result is dynamic combinations that make for a flavour burst with each mouthful. In line with the ever-rising standard of culinary experiences in Cape Town, the presentation is exquisite and you’re eating with your eyes before it hits your mouth.
Fun with food
The menu was designed by cookbook author and restaurateur Neil Roake, which goes some way in explaining the creativity and playfulness evident in each dish. “This is all about SERIOUS FUN. I want to invite people to come hang out with mates who make them forget about their phones…” says Roake. Neil is about as quirky as the Cafe and is always keen for a chat so if you find him wandering around when you visit, make sure to ask him about some of the products on sale and what to expect in the coming months.
But one of the most important things to note is that this space is ever-changing, so every two months the minds behind Now Showing get together and completely transform the space (in six days, I might add) into something new, fresh and exciting. The next makeover takes place on Monday, 22 January 2018 so be sure to get yourself to the Light Side Cafe to experience not only the incredibly innovative, forward-thinking food menu but also the feast of colour and texture for the eyes in the form of the freshly curated designer goods and wares.
Three cheers for this team for adding to the exciting offerings in Cape Town and seriously raising the bar when it comes to casual, creative dining.
Tip: Honestly, the breakfast serving is so generous that I would say it’s possible to share a plate between two, so you’re potentially looking at R25 per person for breakfast. That’s pretty unbeatable.
The Bill: The four-course vegan tasting menu costs R195/p, which includes a glass of the complimentary Rosé. Their FD coffee ranges from R18 to R27, and the breakfast dishes range between R50 and R65.
Opening Hours: 7am - 4pm weekdays and Saturdays, closed on Sundays. Booking for the Light Side Cafe can either be done telephonically with Miko 076 375 8541, or via the Feastfox Inc. booking app.