It seems that tapas are the new international trend.
Diners the world over are eager to experiment and explore lots of different dishes and new tastes.
Ferran Adria, of El Bulli fame closed up his molecular gastronomy restaurant and opened a tapas bar in Barcelona.
In Cape Town, Luke Dale-Roberts specialises in them, to great success and recognition.
French Toast, Foodbarn and Deli, Sotano, La Mouette and many other restaurants have adapted to this style of eating.
In fact, the word ‘Tapas’ no longer relate to a Spanish style of cuisine, but more an international description of a small tasting plate.
You can experiment without getting locked into one main course of lamb, steak, curry or whatever course you might choose.
Stephan van de Ven’s Dutch Restaurant in Wynberg has evolved his popular menu to this style of eating and I think he has done a wonderful job.
Stephan, as may people remember, ran Dutch in the Waterkant for may years before shifting to the burbs.
I’d describe his food as Dutch South African, with a very interesting Indonesian twist.
What he has done is to take many of his best known and popular dishes and serves them up 2 or 3 at a go on the one platter or series of plates.
All the regulars are there – Bitterballen, Dutch Kroket, Nasi Goreng, Aubergine Rolls with Feta, Chilli and Mint and not to forget the desserts of Dutch Apple Tart with Custard or Pancakes with a coffee/Kahlua sauce.
I loved my selection, which I shared with a few friends. The standout dish for me was chilled roasted pepper soup with spicy calamari.
Delicious tasty food, and I only wish he’d open in the evenings, as I think the southern suburbs needs accomplished restaurateurs like Stephan.
Recent successful openings like Erawan in Chelsea Village, Wynberg and Societi Brasserie in Tokai demonstrate that if you get the formula of menu, price, location and ambiance right you are on to a winner.
Dutch has the menu, the location, the ambiance and the prices are right – so pretty please, Stephan, would you not open a few evenings a week?, just for me?
Prices from R20 to R45 percourse. Average R35.
Open 8-4:30 Monday – Friday, 9-2:00 Saturday.
51 Waterloo Road, Chelsea Village, Wynberg. 021 797 5838.