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Afternoon tea at One&Only Cape Town

Pastry chef René Simatos whisks up a daily dose of magic.

10 Apr 2013
chef rene simatos

Every day One&Only Cape Town sees the central serving table at Vista Bar & Lounge transformed by Executive Pastry Chef René Simatos and her team of passionate sugar smiths and bakers.

Starting their preparations from early each morning, René and her team are well versed in preparing a lavish buffet style Afternoon Tea every day of the week.

René started her career at the tender age of eight when she mastered the chocolate cream puff – no mean feat for a young child. From here, the bug for baking and complex patisserie creations bit and thus far René has not looked back.

Though she is a fan of using contemporary methods to push boundaries in her craft, René looks to the industry greats such as Alain Ducasse and Paco Torreblanc for guidance and inspiration,

'I really believe that nothing trumps experience and I find it fascinating that professional pastry chefs can remake classics time after time using skills and tricks passed down from the greats', she says.

René and her team’s latest endeavour is the One&Only Gateaux of the Day. A different variation of this classic fresh cream cake is assembled with great care each day, ready to take centre stage at One&Only's famous Afternoon Tea. Other memorable mouthwatering offerings such as the Lindt Chocolate Fondue ensure the sweet-toothed keep Afternoon Tea as a regular fixture on their social calendars.

Click here to see a gallery of Food24's visit to the One&Only pastry kitchen.

Aside from these extravagant details, the daily Afternoon Tea at One&Only Cape Town focuses on traditional and seasonal sweet and savoury indulgences. In the winter months chocolate and spices such as ginger come to the fore in her creations while of course in the summer months René and her team are only too delighted to explore all the possibilities available with fresh fruit and summer berries available at that time of year.

René says she identifies with the fantastical chocolatier Vianne Rocher from the movie Chocolat. Just like her celluloid inspiration, René has the ability to transform an everyday experience of enjoying tea and a baked treat in the afternoon into an unforgettable one.


The lavish Afternoon Tea at One&Only Cape Town is priced at R165 per person and is served from 2.30pm –5.30pm daily. The famous winter chocolate fondue is priced at R165 for two persons sharing. For an extra spoil, order a glass of MCC bubbly from R45 per glass.

Advance booking is recommended

Call 021 4314511 or email to

Read more on: cape town  |  pastry  |  hotels  |  high tea

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