(Image by Buitengeluk)
Now that Summer’s here, is there anything better than sitting under the sun with a glass of wine and a plate of something delicious? We’ve rounded up the restaurants with gardens that invite you to lose track of time.
La Vie en Rose
It’s Sandton home was pretty enough, but since La Vie en Rose moved to the Killarney Country Club, it has definitely become the kind of place you arrive for breakfast and leave after lunch. Our favourites? Start the day with spicy shakshouka, or pop in for afternoon waffles, slathered with peanut butter cookie dough ice cream.
A favourite with Parks moms and the Saturday cycling crowd, sitting under the trees here feels a little like daydreaming in a meadow. Child- and dog-friendly, the unassuming menu hits the spot with offerings like savoury breakfast pancakes, excellent pregos and steak rolls drizzled with homemade salsa verde.
Random Harvest Nursery
Nature works her healing magic while you eat among indigenous trees at this charming tea garden. There’s a strong emphasis on the fresh and homemade – the jam, for instance, is lovingly stirred by the owner’s mother, and all the milk comes from her own herds. The cakes are excellent, but the spicy chorizo breakfast also deserves a mention.
It’s hard to believe that the highway, with its fumes and frustrations, is just minutes away from this verdant oasis. Ducks waddle around the pond, roses sigh out their soft perfume, and fountains trickle musically in the background. What’s to order? Breakfasts are a highlight (think creamy mushrooms and asparagus on rye or roasted black mushrooms brushed with pesto and hollandaise sauce), while lunch options range from light bites like pear and spinach salad to heartier classics such as oxtail.
Wild Goose Café at Blandford Manor
Weeping willows, a burbling stream and quaint wooden bridges – is there anything more you could possibly need for a relaxing day? The menu is simple and straight forward, with an accent on top quality ingredients. With no children under 15 allowed, it’s not ideal for a family putting – but, then again, many consider the peace made possible by keeping the restaurant toddler-free to be its greatest asset.
The Silver Teaspoon
Rolling green lawns are half the attraction at this tea room; the chance to step back in time by dining under the trees, like a Victorian lady, explains the rest of its appeal. Regulars adore The Silver Teaspoon’s high teas, with dainty cakes served on equally dainty china and silverware that would please even the Crawleys of Downton Abbey. Light eats include mince stroganoff pancakes, chicken salad and salmon salad, and there are plenty of Banting options, too.
Windmill on Main
The first thing most regulars at this tucked away country-style spot mention is its pretty garden, complete with ponds and shady trees, which provides almost all the veggies used on site. The second is the pizza, with generous toppings oozing off a crispy crust. But don’t worry if you’re not in a Mediterranean mood – there are loads of other choices, including several Banting option.