Recent patrons at Belthazar Restaurant include Hollywood actor Ethan Hawke and his wife Ryan.
The star couple stopped by for a meal of steak and red wine between shoots for Hawke’s new sci-fi flick called 24 Hours to Live, which was filmed in the Mother City in June.
Over the years, Hawke has been outspoken about his failed attempts at sticking to vegetarianism – and Belthazar certainly is no haven for those averse to meat. Upon entering the dimly lit restaurant, guests are greeted by long chunks of biltong dangling from the ceiling and, next to white linen-covered tables and dark leather chairs, a display fridge brims with raw cuts in various shades of crimson and red.
Our reservation was on a Saturday evening and the restaurant was packed. A front of house manager led us through the smart-casual buzz and past an oval wooden bar where men in expensive suits with loosened ties reclined, while a few less lucky hopeful folks without bookings were politely shown the door.
Well, when in Rome! We opted for two 300g medium-rare rib-eye cuts (R209 each). Mine came unadorned (no sauce); succulent, simple perfection in an olive oil basting, as recommended by the waiter. My BBQ mushrooms on the side (R40) were fine but not extraordinary. A shared Caprese starter (R90) offset the meat frenzy; and was truly tasty with delectable buffalo mozzarella and crisp slices of sweet tomato slathered in pesto. We were starving and made the rookie error of devouring way too much fresh table bread, served with a tasty wors and tomato-based relish so, sadly, dessert was out of the question. In fact, I had half my rib-eye in a doggie bag – and can bear witness that it tasted equally great the next day.
ALSO READ: How restaurants secretly get you to spend more
Leather and wood ambience and meat aside, one of Belthazar’s best features is its wine list, which, it claims, includes up to 250 Cape cultivars by the glass (this is optimum because you can pair a different wine with each food course).
However, we decided to try a bottle of Hillcrest Robbenzicht 2014 red blend (R340), which proved to be a fine drinking wine and companion to the main serving.
Naturally, the V&A is all about location: after dinner, take a stroll next to the glittering harbour lights, all the way to the five-star Cape Grace Hotel for a nightcap at the Bascule Bar.
All in all, a lovely evening out indeed.
ALSO READ: SA's most sexy, sleek and stylish restaurants
- City Press