Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Pepénero, Cape Town

Pepénero is modern, stylish and chic-- perfect for the after party.
I stumbled upon Pepénero on a quiet Friday night and when I stepped inside, I immediately felt expensive. White tablecloths, leather couches, dim lights and some beautiful beautiful lounge music was playing. Apparently this place mixes its own blend of South African chill out and a three CD set was for sale for ZAR500. Too expensive for me so I decided to just eat instead.

The food
I was a bit disappointed with their pasta. The asparagus risotto (ZAR80), prawn linguine (ZAR110) and meat ravioli (ZAR50) were ordinary and did not taste as good as the restaurant looked. Skip the Italian fare and have the meat instead-- I recommend the Fillet Pepénero coated with black pepper and mustard seeds (ZAR90). The pepper crust complemented the tender beef and went well with the Southern Right Pinotage (ZAR180).

Make sure you leave space for the sinful desserts. They've got the standard tiramisu (ZAR35) and crème brulée (ZAR35) but I highly recommend the chocolate filled banana beignets (ZAR40). (This beignet resembled a tiny donut with a sweet filling.) Yummy!

The service is excellent as I've come to expect in almost all the places I've been here in Cape Town. The staff is unobtrusive, attentive and they know their food and wine!

In the two times that I've been here, suffice to say that I was the only Asian in the room every time. At least on the occasions that I visited, most of the people were very well dressed and came in expensive cars. It doesn't have a snobbish vibe though and I did feel welcome just dressed in my sneakers and jeans. (But then again, I always say that true beauty is effortless. Mwehehe!)

Rating:4/5 0
Four pawikan points. I'd say that the mood, ambience and music outshined (outshone?) the food. Best to come here to chillax after the party or to have a couple of drinks with your date. Bonus points for their logo which would probably look good as a tattoo.

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