“It’s been a successful summer for Stellenbosch. Restaurants are opening on almost every corner, interspersed with wine bars which serve as extensions to their estates. Hot sunny days blend into balmy evenings as pavement tables filled with happy patrons, and if you can find a parking spot – take it.” Daily Maverick The Stellenbosch food and wine scene is booming with new restaurants and wine bars, March 2022
It’s no secret that the Cape winelands are hotting up after an uncertain time of Covid – and especially Stellenbosch as the new vibey spot for eating out, only an hour from Cape Town. We met Ella Rykaart through her seasoned experience studying wine, and working in the hospitality industry. Now she’s the face behind the new Rykaart’s eatery, together with her husband and chef, Alex. They’ve put heart and soul into their new restaurant and you can taste it. After an extensive culinary career and most recently 4 years at The Vine Bistro at Glenelly, Alex is the chef-patron – and combining their varied experiences, the menu that they’ve created is fun, easy going and delicious.
With all the buzz in Stellenbosch, we asked Ella for top picks for newest eateries in her hometown, and of course first on the list is Rykaart’s. Try out some of the other new gems in Stellenbosch when you’re planning activities for your stay in South Africa.
Rykaart’s – our spot
This is great for a date night dinner or night out with friends. Situated on the corner of Bird and Dorp Streets, the restaurant has already become a firm favorite with locals, including some of the big name chefs in the area. The wine list is extensive and the menu changes often.
If you’re looking for a relaxed weekday lunch, this is the perfect spot. After opening at the end of 2021 this charming French-styled bistro has been stacking up rave reviews. A small menu and well-priced wines, there’s something for everyone. Sounds like the French onion soup is not to be missed!
Top pick for a weekend lunch. The menu is small, seasonal and fresh, and changes often. The tastes are global and you’ll have fun sharing small plates.
An extension of the Quoin Rock wine estate, this is our wine bar of choice at the moment. Tucked away in a hidden courtyard, this spot is elegant but relaxed – perfect for a glass of Quoin Rock wine and snacking on delicious tapas. After this head over to Stellenbosch Wine Bar – another top pick.
This new eatery gets our vote for a healthy breakfast. As the owners of La Coco say – “Every item on our menu is as good for the body as it is for the taste buds.”
Ask about these restaurants or any other restaurants in the Cape that you might want to add to your South African itinerary. For more of our recommended restaurants in Cape Town, link here.