Though I get to go back to Cape Town often, I’m always amazed how much changes in my little (ok, not so little) city between my trips. It’s great that there’s always something new to come back to & look forward to each & every time. The challenge of course (& I’m always up for it, don’t get me wrong!) is making choices & then trying to cram them all in while having a “restful” holiday.
Enter the yumminess!
And so it’s become tradition for me in the weeks leading up to each trip to have a “Cape Town to do” folder & by the time I land, it’s usually a little overwhelming & I don’t quite know where to start.
Cape Town has seen quite a few markets added to their scene over the last while & the V&A Market on the Wharf‘s fresh food & produce market is one I visited at least 3 times while I was down on my last trip. Be sure to check their trading hours – we arrived to closed doors & were a tad puzzled one day.
I’m told it’s in what used to be the Musica warehouse though I’ve been out of Cape Town so long I still remember it as the spot where the Planet Hollywood restaurant was (did I just give away my age?). Head to the direction of the aquarium & you can’t miss it. They opened for business early December 2012 & entry is free (yay!) – I can’t stand paying to enter a market no matter how posh it promises to be…
Of course we arrived hungry & immediately set about exploring what would be lunch!
For starters (yes there were starters!) we had Aunty Moona’s Gourmet Samoosas. What a brilliant idea & the flavours were delish. You can choose from delectable meat or vegetarian options like pumpkin & sweet potato with cinnamon. The humble samoosa is humble no more!
We made our way upstairs (don’t miss the upstairs sections!) where I settled (& let me say upfront that I chose well!) for a gourmet steak sandwich on ciabatta from the Cape Malay Deli for R45. The meat was so, so succulent & tender I had to stop myself scoffing the whole thing so I could get a pic in…
I washed it down with a freshly squeezed orange juice from Dr Juice (R25 for 350ml). They squeeze anything & everything there (I think I saw avo!) & I really want one of those juicer machines at home!
On another day we decided to be adventurous & tried out the Taste of Taiwan which came highly recommended from many of the stall owners/managers.
They have 6 different set menus you can choose from (each set menu is a plate) ranging from R45-R50. We went big & shared a variety of dumplings & a crystal pyramid (all vegetarian). I’m not sure what the sauce was that they put over everything but that just made the plate!
My partner in crime was too happy to see his favourite coffee roastery, Origin serving at the event & ended each visit with a flat white. This coffee snob of mine was too chuffed when the barista greeted him by name *rolls eyes*. They also had a tea stall, Nigiro Tea Merchants just around the corner where you could learn more about this art (you need to see them in action to believe me, but it is art).
I on the other hand opted to save space for dessert instead and couldn’t believe my luck when I saw The Creamery scooping up as my favourite Jozi ice cream maker Paul Ballen, recommended I look The Creamery up when in Cape Town & voila, here they were!
Besides the fact that this handmade ice cream is just in another league, The Creamery are the most friendly folks ever & even let me taste different flavours before I made a final decision (I went with Boysenberry, it took a lot of deliberation!). So smitten was I that a couple of days later I took them up on an invite for a tour of their factory (more like a huge kitchen) but more on them in a later post…
If by some crazy notion you don’t see anything that tickles your fancy at the very least you will leave with some food inspiration thanks to the demo kitchen, hosted South African Master Chef 2012 Runner-Up, Sue Ann Allen (we must have just missed her!).
Once you’re inspired, pick up a foodie magazine or cookbook from Books on the Wharf before you head home. I on the other hand headed back to our hotel for a little bit of a nap 🙂
Fragrant spices from the Cape Malay Deli.
Fun was had all round on all our visits & each time we returned we brought friends & family back with us – no point in getting fat alone I say! Nice little touches I really enjoyed was the drop & go parking right in front of the market (my sister-in-law who joined us on one of the days was about 10 months preggers!). They also had lockers where you could stash your shopping & well, carry on shopping without having to schlep it around with you or worse have to go dump it in the car. Fab!
There’s so much more on offer I really only touched on a couple of my favourites here. In particular Fortain Chocolatier is top of my list when I head back this weekend & I’ll be sure to leave enough space in my tummy this time!
V&A Market on the Wharf
Dock Road, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
+27 276 0200
Hours: Wednesday-Sunday: 09h30-19h30