I escaped work this week, to check out a well-established (albeit underappreciated) restaurant, nestled quite literally, within the waterfront quays
It may be grey and dank in Cape Town, but the hunger pangs live on! So today’s foodie escapade had me following my love of decor and need to placate the belly monster, to Seelan Restaurant & Bar.
Seelan is a restaurant and bar located within the property lines of my favorite mall: Victoria & Alfred Waterfront. It is demurely tucked away at the edge of the quay. I walk by it quite often during shopping expeditions; always telling myself I should step away from the comforts of my favored waterfront eateries, and experience something new…but then I forget it, and the cycle persists.
Today, I entered the premises for a late lunch. Seelan is cool, in the chic, travel sort of way. With contemporary stylistic precision, the restaurant carves out a piece of the Mediterranean, saturates the slice in the idle dining style of the South of France, and serves the experience courteously in the Cape coast somewhat warmly.
Seelan is said to recreate:
“…the joie de vivre (joy of life) of popular French restaurants. Guests can relax in contemporary décor courtesy of Dennis Banks and enjoy sweeping views of the V&A Waterfront.”
First Course began with Seelan’s Bean and Lentil Soup – a normal enough concoction, served to sooth a burning appetite, and line the mouth and tummy with a warm little broth committed to tempering the sneaky winter chill clinging delicately to your flesh.
Next up came the Starters. I indulged in the Seafood Bouillabaisse and Grilled Patagonica Calamari. The bouillabaisse was exceptionally well done. The dish balanced tomato and sea critters’ flavors well, and the fresh mussels and prawns make this a briny good starting choice.
The grilled patagonica calamari were seasoned so perfectly. My spicy soul was pleased; and even those preferring bland food would not be sent into a coughing fit by the nicely grilled calamari (not rubbery and tasteless at all!YAY).
For the main event, I had Al Farouk, which is basically Linguini Pasta with Prawns, Crayfish, Line fish, and mild curry spice. Dear Lord! If the sheer size of the order isn’t enough to satisfy you, then dig into this plated bundle of lightly creamy slippery goodness, and see if you don’t finish the dish loving Crayfish.
Dessert was a downer purely because they didn’t have any creme brulee in stock…so I had chocolate cake….and it was soooooo good ERMAHGERD!
I’ve had thousands of pounds worth of chocolate cake in my life time, but this is arguably the moistest most chocolatey chocolate cake I’ve ever had. The chocolate isn’t that terrible, cloying cheap stuff with the icing also tasting processed and gross. It was just…just...sooooo good.
Seelan is one of those spots which are perfect to have ‘your’ table at.
This is getting the whole fine dining experience, at a fraction of the expected cost, and within an establishment sure to care for their first time visitors and their regulars.
This is the restaurant to have a weekly glass of wine at, and to unwind at after a long day. Hell! This is the place to toast at, to days ending in “-day”. It is the birthday party, engagement dinner, first in-laws meeting spot. Seelan’s is good for the quick lunch, and the foodie’s wishing to savor Indo-Mediterranean cuisine made quite well.
I’m really loving this spot guys. It get’s a 8/10 on the food.
What about the vegetarians?
There are as many meatlover options as there are vegetarian options.
Pescatarians are also overwhelmingly sorted.
It’s actually a rather lovely selection of Indo-Mediterranean grub for you veggie folk to dig into.
What of the drinks & booze?
While the food menu is composed of everything from red meat, poultry to fish, pasta, gourmet salads, sauce &side options (and maybe even plate options one day) Seelan’s Bar is equipped to quench your thirst – whatever it may deign to choose.
I enjoyed some tangy throat wetters, with the ideal amount of alcohol doled out, per sip.
They’ve got their own house wine, whisky, beer, an extensive wine menu, and more.
*P.S: There are soft drinks, juice and water for the non-boozers.
Seelan Restaurant & Bar get’s an all-round 8/10.
Shop 8C, Quay 5,
V & A Waterfront, Cape Town, 8002
021 421 4906
Monday – Sunday: 09:00am – 23:00pm