Two weekends ago it was the most beautiful day in Cape Town so being invited to experience lunch at Chinchilla was fabulous as their deck serves up the most gorgeous views of Camps Bay. My friend Tracy and I spent the afternoon chilling in a comfy cushion-bedecked area and can report that their frozen margaritas are delish as well as wallet-friendly – just R65 a pop.
Chinchilla’s actually got a pretty extensive cocktail menu and we’d have liked to have tried another type but the margaritas were yummy enough to justify a second round. Next time I’ll try one of their signature cocktails, a lekker-sounding litchi and basil G&T (R95) made with Tanqueray gin. Check out their drinks menu here.
As far as food goes, Chinchillas is part of the Kove Collection restaurant group. While their food menu isn’t as large as their list of cocktails, they tick off all the boxes to have a nicely curated selection of ‘bistro-style bites’ that includes burgers, pasta and salad but leans heavily towards seafood.
Speaking of seafood, we kicked things off with a prawn cocktail (R130) that featured six plump baby prawns on a bed of avo and lettuce with pink sauce…
…and three li’l oysters (R80).
Both of these starters were on the pricy side (at least until Trace and I marry our Canadian plastic surgeons) but they tasted great and the views and vibe are fabulous enough that they can get away with ‘location tax’.
If it wasn’t such a hot day I’d have liked to have tried their bouillabaisse (R180 and it serves 2) which sounds absolutely fabulous. Think prawns, monkfish, clams, mussels, fennel, saffron, rouille (the bread crumb-enriched Provencal sauce that serves as the heart and soul of the soup) and sourdough bread. Yum!
As far as mains where concerned, we ordered the grilled tuna nicoise (R200) served in the pan with baby new potatoes, tomato, green beans, olives and radish…
…and the tomato-based seafood linguine (R140).
Of the two dishes, the linguine was the clear winner. Aside from being delicious, I thought it was the best value when you consider it’s just R10 more than the prawn cocktail but you get a large bowl of food studded with mussels, clams and a silky, delectable ‘white fish’ that literally melts in your mouth. I devoured every last scrap and would happily go back and order it again.
I’d also like to try their cheese burgers (R120) which seemed like a popular pick. Every ten minutes one would glide past my head and they looked great!
The day we visited (a Saturday) things were super chilled and it was the most wonderfully indulgent way to spend a lazy afternoon but Chinchilla turns into a regte partytjie as the sun goes down. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday eves, the restaurant’s resident global DJs really dish up a vibe.