So, it’s hibernation time again, when excess weight gain is acceptable on account of the bad weather. Well, this winter we’re shedding off laziness, the persuasion of comfort food and the company of television, videos and series. Cape Town is host to a new hub of Winter hot spots budding in and around the city. Here is a list of the most recent hang outs that need to be explored whether you’re a local or just visiting:
The Foreign ExchangeOpening Times: Monday – Thursday: 7am – 11pm; Friday: 7am – late; Saturday: 12pm – late
Address: 92 – 96 Station Road | Observatory | Cape Town | +27 (0) 76588 6588
It’s easy to fall in love with Observatory. It’s that kind of intoxicating love affair that borders between threatening and enchanting. Despite the presence of dubious looking characters slash drug traffickers lurking at the entrance of every under priced pub and bar, Observatory possesses a certain alchemistic appeal that just keeps you coming back for another near-death experience. This is probably one of the factors that make it the best spot to establish a bar and cafe dedicated to bringing young people of diverse culture and origin together, cause let’s face it, we all like things! The Foreign Exchange, which opened in June this year,isn’t just affordable drinks and head-popping music with personalities from different parts of the world, it’s also another one of those dingy Cape Town spots we’ve all grown to love.
Opening times: Monday – Sunday: 7am – 4pm (open occasionally in the evenings for events)
Address:152 Main Road | Muizenberg | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21788 5849
If you’re visiting from Joburg this will be foreign to you. Perfectly situated near the colourful, Muizenberg beach front, Slow Life caters to a pescetarian( I had the same confused expression), environmentally conscious market eager to play it’s part in saving what’s left of our beloved planet. As a pescetarian restaurant, Slow Life offers exclusively vegetarian dishes with the option of fresh fish, salad parfaits, veggie burgers and well, no meat, which is great unless you’re a carnivore like myself. If you’re not interested in their menu, in addition to this, the restaurant runs free meditation sessions every morning at 7am as well as hosts frequent movie screenings and live music evenings. Slow Life offers more than a night out, it offers a conscious lifestyle experience, absent of distressing office phones and the blind rush of life.
The Odyssey Gastropub
Opening times: Monday – Friday: 12pm – midnight; Saturday: 3pm – midnight (dinner trade starts upstairs at 4pm)
Address: 199 Bree Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21422 4084
Within the wonderful eclectic mix of Cape Town diversity, it gets easier to lose touch with what is local. Refreshingly and genuinely afro-centric The Odyssey is dedicated to providing meals which include locally sourced and ethically produced ingredients. The connotation is usually that “local means cheap”, but nay, times are changing and The Odyssey is testament of this. With it’s claim to fame being affordable, high-end cuisine and drinks in a comfortable setting, The Odyssey is Cape Town’s first gastropub. Get familiar!
Opening times: Sunday – Thursday: 10am – 10pm; Friday – Saturday: 10am – midnight
Address: 33 Heerengracht Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 80 946 773
I debated including Burger King on the list but let’s face it, we’re all eager to get that fast food goodness into our systems. Opening it’s doors to hoards of hungry first-time buyers, the competing fast food chain established itself in Cape Town in May this year much to the delight of cheap-pocketed students and loyal fast food devotees. Not having had the opportunity to try any of their processed goods myself, I can definitively say I’m both eager and fearful to test drive the much-talked about burgers.
There’s absolutely no excuse to mope or moan this winter with so much to do, explore and stuff your face with. Just make sure you match that with a healthy jog…to the kitchen.