Aegean to the Atlantic: Our review of Si Cantina Sociale
images: Restaurant's own
There are many highlights and additions to Cape Town's art, design, food and wine offering on an annual basis, but perhaps the biggest highlight in recent years (and certainly last year) was the opening of the Silo District. The Zeitz MOCAA thrilled the globe, as British architect Thomas Heatherwick converted a disused grain silo at the V&A Waterfront into perhaps the most striking piece of architecture in southern Africa. With the opening of the Silo District came the opening of many new Mother City destinations – accommodation (RadissonRED is a must-visit for its Millennial-focussed ingenuity), designer stores, the GUILD Gallery, and of course, new restaurants.
Among the favourites is Cape Town's new Med-influenced Si Cantina Sociale, an elegant and stylishly furnished industrial loft-like space with a generous assortments of dishes, from flat breads, to tasty tapas to filling and delicious mains, not to mention cocktails and an excellent wine list. Open from 7am Monday to Sunday, you can visit the stylish cantina for just about any occasion: breakfast, lunch, business meetings, happy hour, date night, after-work cocktails and your evening nightcap.
Adopting a farm-to-table philosophy and using organic and sustainably-sourced produce where possible, you can expect really fresh, delicious food and flavours. In fact, the menu has so many options you may struggle to narrow the choosing down (which isn't a bad thing – round up friends and order plate after plate to share). Try the cheese and garlic, caprese, green or Tuscan chicken flat breads, a 48-hour matured multi-grain or gluten-free dough; Si style soft tacos; the quinoa and bean burger or Mediterranean chicken. Fill your table up with tapas like chilli poppers, deep fried pickles, zucchini fries, spicy chickpeas with greens and fermented yogurt or the halloumi lettuce wrap, not to mention three veggie-packed salads. (Prices range between R35 to R85 for tapas, flat breads from R50 and mains from R85.)
The cocktail menu features classic libations with a a local twist – Margaritas, a Dewar's Dramble, Ocho Old Fashioned and, naturally, Aperol spritz. The service is excellent, perhaps too good – you certainly aren't left wanting when asked if you're enjoying your meal.
The oh-so chic interiors feature hanging plants, a floor-to-ceiling wall mural, beautiful wooden floors and emereld green leather booths with bronze accents and glistening lantern light fixtures. Sit outside with views of the Silo Hotel and Zeitz MOCAA, soaking in the sophisticated yet arty charm that the Silo District has come to be proudly known for.