Monday, May 31, 2010

Cape Town GeekDinners: Vegetarian Dining

I haven't written about the Cape Town GeekDinners in a while but this doesn't mean I haven't been attending. I've become frustrated by some restaurants' lack of understanding of vegetarian concerns, which have occasionally resulted in unpleasant dining experiences for me (::cough::Cappello::cough::) at a few restaurants, which, in turn, has left me unmotivated to write about what has otherwise usually been a fun event.

A few months ago I decided to be more proactive after Trevor from The Wild Fig, who is also a GeekDiner, started asking me questions about vegetarian issues in order to expand his knowledge, thereby making the restaurant more vegetarian friendly, and this got me thinking about the kinds of issues that come up repeatedly, especially in the context of a GeekDinner. As it happened the very next GeekDinner was held at his restaurant, and it was fantastic knowing that I had nothing to worry about and no unpleasant surprises might be heading my way.

Since then, during the planning stages, I've started emailing our contact person at each restaurant to provide them with advice. So far it's been two (as the dinners are only held six times a year), and it's been hit and miss. The first didn't even bother to respond but the second, Michael from Da Capo, was just as interested and enthusiastic as Trevor was and, although I wasn't able to attend that dinner (I had a press function in Johannesburg), which was held last week, I imagine the food that was prepared for the vegetarians was delicious and I know it definitely didn't contain hidden animal products such as beef stock or animal rennet, which have been two of my major concerns.

Therefore, if you're a vegetarian and will be visiting the city, either as a tourist or particularly to attend that giant sports event that dare not be named, consider either of these two restaurants for peace of mind. I'd recommend phoning both ahead of time to book and to let them know you're a vegetarian and that you've seen this post and know they are vegetarian-friendly establishments that care about their customers' concerns.

The Wild Fig
Address: Liesbeek Avenue, Valkenberg Estate, Mowbray [ map ]
Phone: 021 448 0507
Fax: 086 605 3936
GPS Coordinates:
33° 56.556'S
18° 28.767'E

Da Capo
Address: 52 Shortmarket Street, Cape Town CBD [ map - it's not on the map but the location is dead centre, at Greenmarket Square ]
Phone: 021 423 1234
GPS Coordinates:

Previously On Cape Town > South Africa > Africa > Earth:
• Cape Town GeekDinner Report: Happy Habanero



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