When I came
to Cape Town, Madame Zingara’s was the coolest place in town. One fire and
several tours with the tent later, owner Richard Griffin appears to have
settled down to running a variety of different eateries in Cape Town, many of
them well-loved institutions such as Café Mozart. Food24 was invited to try out
Café Paradiso and, since I had read somewhere that they prided themselves on being
child-friendly, we took them up for a weekend breakfast along with husband and
five-year old son.
is by far the most spacious restaurant on uber-trendy Kloof Street with the
best views of the mountain. Luckily for us, there wasn’t a breath of wind that
morning so we sat in the shade of the tree whilst Charlie drove cars round and
round the central fountain. There is a lot less ‘tat’ than at Zingara’s but you
still have the impression that you are in a slightly eccentric Aunt’s family
home – which impression was reinforced by an elderly lady whisking a broom
around the place and greeting us with a cheerful, but absent-minded charm.
Inside, there are several different areas to the restaurant with an open plan
kitchen operating to the left, facing the central bar.
some very interesting, non-traditional options available for breakfast such as
Scrambled Egg Rosti with feta, avo and tomato (R45), a fishy version of Eggs
Benedict (R55)and Savoury French toast
with halloumi, pesto and tomato (R45). I had the latter – the be-hatted
waitress happily swapping halloumi for feta - and Kevin went for the Classic
Stack (R45) which was basically the full English piled up in the middle of the
plate. I was surprised to see there were
no kids options since they said they were child-friendly, but the manager
explained that it was easier to let parents/kids choose what they wanted and
then price it up accordingly.
was hot, tasty, fresh and just the right amount – gone are the days when I
wanted to stuff in so much breakfast food that I needn’t eat for the rest of
the day – and everyone else was looking very happy with their food as well. If
you come later in the day there are interesting-sounding sandwiches and lots of
traditional Italian pasta and rice favourites with a few steaks on the side for
The Kid Angle
the form of ‘projects’ which your child can undertake in the bakery kitchen at
the back. After the day’s breadmaking is finished, the kitchen turns itself
into an impromptu crèche with extremely lovely and patient staff helping your
child make gingerbread men, pizza or decorate cupcakes. Charlie opted for
gingerbread men and soon he was busily rolling out his dough under the helpful
eyes of Nandie and Jennifer. He happily sat at the table for most of breakfast,
playing with the dough, adding chocolate chip buttons and decorating the lid of
a cardboard box which was then used to house his treasures when they came out
of the oven. It’s a very clever idea and meant that we were able to enjoy a
civilised breakfast by ourselves – a welcome treat indeed.
any age really. I think it’s really important for kids to learn how to behave
in a proper restaurant ie not one where you get a free cowboy hat and
over-cooked junk food, and this was a perfect example of a good family
restaurant where the kids are welcome, but don’t take over the joint and annoy
other childless patrons.
Cafe Paradiso was reviewed by Cathy Marston, follow her on twitter.
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