So my move away from the seaside didn’t last long.
Don’t judge me, because even in the throes of winter, Camps Bay is an absolute treat.
Today’s foodie escapade took us to: La Parada Del Mar.
You can never go wrong with a taste adventure, and La Parada Del Mar eloquently delivers a tapas dining experience coveted to indecisive foodies like myself. In keeping with the Spanish influence of the tapas menu, La Parada “has focused on fresh South African ingredients to create dishes which are not only delicious but picture perfect in presentation.” (Martin Senekal, Head Chef of La Parada.)
I used the visit to La Parada Del Mar, to catch up with an old friend in an idyllic setting. Waitrons brave the chill coming from the sea, to greet the restaurants arrivals; and their warm professionalism, is a consistent attribute to pride themselves on.
I ambitiously wanted to sit on the deck, snuggled close to the heaters while I looked over at the churning Atlantic ocean…but eventually I had to resign myself to the Greek to Spanish-like interior of the restaurant.
…and then we proceeded to gorge ourselves on their large tapas selection.
We left no dish untasted once they arrived. Deliberation may have taken 15 minutes and several stomach growls, but we eventually settled on choices guided by our helpful waiter.
First to the table was the Champinones Al Ajillo, Spanish Garlic Mushrooms with poached duck egg, truffle oil, pecorino, chives, and toasted bread.
I think I’m really starting to vibe with mushrooms. They seem to garnish every plate I dive into, in Cape Town eateries. I really enjoyed this dish once the egg yolk oozed over everything. The truffle oil and chives created perfect taste symmetry when one chews the entire Al Ajillo concoction together.
With my favorite seafood, Calamari, not available this day, I eagerly chose Marinated Prawns with Gremolata and lemon. Honestly? So good.
I’ve had better, but that’s purely due to the fact that my mum is the one that makes those ones.
I will definitely be returning to have a plateful more of these marinated prawns, come summer though!
Hearty is what we go for in winter, and La Parada Del Mar has a Roasted Pork Belly to make your tummy happy with comfort.
The Pork belly is made with a mix of rosemary roasted apple sauce, smoked paprika and honey glaze, pickling onions, and pork crackling. Tapa portion sizes make this rich and wholesome, incredibly well-made roast, one of the best choices when dining here.
I didn’t want to disappoint my omniscient mother, so I ensured my Sunday lunch had some healthiness beyond the aforementioned tapas ingredients.
Enter, the Honey and Thyme Roasted Butternut, with strained yogurt and toasted pumpkin seeds, which I dream of being able to make one day. I would kind of come to love vegetables if I could have a plateful of this butternut.
Not to be forgotten, was a serving of Patatas A Lo Pobre, known as Spanish poor man’s potatoes. The potatoes were not bland; they were soft but firm, and seasoned with the slightest bit of herbs, which accentuated the overall simple dish.
Churros with salted dark chocolate dipping sauce, are awesome! So fatty. So yumm!
The Baked Vanilla Bean Cheese Cake, served cutely in a jar with Blackberry mousse, meringue, and lemon powder, is a tart, well-executed sweet dessert everyone is almost likely to savor like a religious experience.
A solid dining option for the day time. Don’t rush the experience. Enjoy the simplicity of the restaurant, and the complexity of its tapas taste adventure.
I’m really liking this spot guys. It get’s an 9/10.
What about the health nuts & vegetarians?
The winter food menu at La Parada Del Mar is healthy in its ingredient choices, but not too accommodating for the vegetarians.
…atleast you have salad, and like 2 other non-meaty main dishes to choose from.
What of the drinks & booze?
They know how to make cocktails folks. You don’t have to send your weak drink back, and get additionally charged for them to make it the way it was always meant to taste.
I went in on the alcohol and the non-alcoholic drinks. The hot chocolate warmed my soul, and the cocktail sent me on a mini Spanish vacation. Really well done.
*P.S: There are soft drinks, juice and water for the non-boozers.
La Parada Del Mar get’s an all-round 9/10.
La Parada Del Mar
35 Victoria Rd, Camps Bay, Cape Town, 8005
Monday – Sunday: 8am – 2am
Tel: (+27)21 286 2106