Pure Good Restaurant in Cape Town

The new health-driven passion project of one motivated MasterChef SA finalist  

Note: Pure Good has moved from its 21 St Johns Street, Gardens premises and will be operating from its Observatory-based cafeteria and will also be taking occupancy in Woodstock in August 2015. Visit the eatery's Facebook page for details.

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Popular reality television series like MasterChef SA aren’t just about great scripting and gripping viewing; they actually have the potential to alter lives. At least that was the experience of young Capetonian Shannon Smuts, founder of the city centre’s new health-focused Pure Good restaurant.

Though not the ultimate winner of the well-loved cooking competition, the bubbly top-16 finalist was pushed by her time on the show to finally break away from an office-based occupation and pursue a long-term dream: working in the world of food. She subsequently got involved with local sustainable farm Fountain of Hope and was very soon conceptualising a place that could operate as an end-point for the fresh produce grown there.

And so her colourful, little eatery was born in mid-July 2013 with a twofold aim: to support this inspiring food initiative and to make nutritious, ethically produced fare both more accessible and more appealing to busy CBD workers in search of tasty, well-priced lunch options.

“People have this perception that healthy food is boring, tasteless and expensive,” says Shannon, who’s been cooking ever since she could. “So, I wanted to show that it can be fun, delicious and affordable.”

What’s more, because she recognises that rushed employees are usually after a quick fix, she’s given her quirky restaurant a bit of a fast-food twist, offering all items as takeaways and selling a number of wholesome pre-packed meals from the grab-and-go fridge.

Of course, visitors can also opt to sit down if they so desire. The café boasts an interior that’s as fresh and inviting as the dishes it serves up: it channels a contemporary farm feel, with bright scatter cushions, glossy enamelware, gardening tools and gumboots as décor.

The menu, which is dominated by greens, features a scrumptious, incredibly inexpensive selection of early-morning bites, salads, wraps, sandwiches and soups, with options including the likes of the feel-good Breakfast Wrap (a mix of scrambled eggs, raw spinach, feta, tomato and mushrooms) and The Wild Hippy sarmie (bulgur wheat, broccoli, cabbage, beetroot, spinach, toasted seeds, sprouts and macadamia nut butter on whole-wheat or rye bread). The thirsty can also sip on Origin coffee or organic herbal teas or choose from an array of delicious smoothies and juices. All items are made from unprocessed, nutrient-rich ingredients and are free of preservatives, trans fats, refined carbs and sugar.

Though, because Shannon is aware that sometimes a little sweet cheat is in order, she hasn’t entirely ruled out the less wholesome alternatives. Hence, the charming city centre restaurant does also boast a small ‘naughty corner’ where passersby can pick up a few guilty pleasures: chocolates, chips and more.

First and foremost though, this vibrant CBD spot is all about purveying pure goodness, and this commendable ethos certainly comes through from the moment guests walk in hungry to the minute they walk out satisfied.

Tip: Pure Good can be used as a small function venue in the evenings, and the restaurant will also do catering for events happening elsewhere in the area.

The Bill: Prices are unbelievably affordable as Shannon is intent on rewarding healthy eaters. Breakfasts range from R15 to R28, the soup of the day goes for R20, lunch dishes ring in at between R25 and R35, and juices and smoothies cost from R15 to R25.

Opening Hours: Monday – Friday: 7am – 5pm

Pictures courtesy of DSTV and Samantha Floquet

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Looking for other restaurants dishing up nutritious fare in the Mother City? Have a look at our overview of healthy eateries in Cape Town.

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