Nelson’s Eye, Cape Town

We ate a lot of amazing food in Cape Town, but Nelson’s Eye stands out as one of my highlights. Having arrived the previous evening, we were only just starting to find our way around, but this steak house is situated pretty centrally (about a 10 minute drive from the Waterfront), so it wasn’t difficult to get to. The restaurant doesn’t seem very big, but there are tables through the back as well, not just the ones surrounding the bar. We were seated at a table in the front beside the bar; they are quite close together and it felt a little cramped. The interior is quite old fashioned with dark furnishings, but it provides a cosy atmosphere.

On reflection, the service here is exactly what I look for at a restaurant: friendly, attentive, but very subtle and not overbearing. Katie and I wasted no time ordering a carafe of the Pinotage, which is the signature wine in South Africa, so it became my go to during our trip. Red wine and steak are 2 of the obvious things to try in Cape Town, but I wasn’t aware seafood was such a big deal – but it makes sense since the city is close to the coast. We decided to share the tempura prawns and the calamari to start, but the garlic roll looked delicious! I didn’t look past the fillet steak for my main and I chose 280g, which was more than enough for me, but there was 230g, 330g or 500g as well. All main courses are served with creamed spinach and a choice of baked potato, golden fried chips or savoury rice. I rashly ordered the baked potato because it looked really good at our neighbours table and I also added a creamy Roquefort sauce to the side.

Nelson's Eye

The wine kept flowing and the food didn’t take too long to come. The starters were tasty, but the standout was definitely the main course. It looked like such a simple plate of steak with a baked potato on the side, but it’s the best steak I’ve ever eaten. It had incredible flavour and was cooked just the way I like it – lovely and pink in the middle. The baked potato was also no ordinary one; the skin was wonderfully crispy, but the inside was so fluffy, and it was topped with sour cream and made for the perfect addition. I scooped up the creamed spinach, which I’m a huge fan of and I stole some of Fran’s pan fried onions, which I liked so much I ordered another plate!

The food here was incredible and I would highly recommend Nelson’s Eye for all steak fans. Although the tables were a bit jam packed, I enjoyed the vibe – not too casual or too fancy. We ended our evening with a peppermint dessert and springbok shots, which is a combination of crème de menthe and Amarula. We well and truly immersed our taste buds in the South African flavours.

Atmosphere – 4
Food – 5
Price – 5
Service – 5

Total – 19/20

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