Harbour House

A romantic dinner for two


My husband and I just love to venture down to the historic harbor village of Kalk Bay and stay at the St James Manor. While staying here we always book a table for dinner at the Harbour House Restaurant.

Well known as a fishing village, Kalk Bay is still a lively working harbour and one of the best places to buy fresh fish straight off the boat, so it’s no wonder the Harbour House has the best and freshest seafood in town. The harbor is a little grotty and smells somewhat fishy, but once you get past the fisherman and the bustle of all the activity, you arrive at an elegant and sophisticated restaurant overlooking the rocks and ocean. In fact, when the tide is high enough, the waves crash and break over the pier and even onto the glass of the restaurant doors!  However, on warm summer evenings these doors are opened up and one feels like you could be dining right in the ocean.

We always arrive a little early and enjoy an aperitif before dinner in the bar. It is beautifully decorated in a beach style theme and I sometimes feel as though I could be sitting in the Hamptons, or St Barts. George, the barman makes a mean Campari cocktail!

Our table is nestled in the corner overlooking the sea and after the very important wine choice is made, we settle in and admire the view. As the tide goes out, the rocks are exposed and we are joined by a few seals, literally singing for their supper. The chardonnay is lovely, my husband and I always share the Hamilton Russell, and we look through the menu. I am not sure why we still do this, as we both know it so well by now and always order our favourites anyway.

As usual the oysters are smashing, and the calamari equally as good. On this particular occasion, we are celebrating and I order the crayfish as a main course, and my husband the lamb cutlets. He doesn’t eat any seafood, except calamari, but the lamb is outstanding. As the waves crash onto the rocks below, and the full moon begins its journey over the ocean, I am reminded of the famous Edward Lear poem the owl and the pussy cat – “The Owl and the Pussy-cat went to sea in a beautiful pea-green boat. They took some honey, and plenty of money, wrapped up in a five-pound note … “.

As the evening draws to a close, we overhear the table next to us talking about their golf game booked for the morning, and as an avid golfer, my husband cannot help himself and offers some advice on this particular course - the Clovelly Country Club. We end up sharing our merlot with them and chatting into the night about all the wonderful things to do in Cape Town. It would seem, even on a romantic dinner out I cannot help myself and end up dishing out epicurean advice!

We bid everyone farewell and make our way home - satiated, happy and sleepy. I fall into the luscious folds of our very large bed and am rocked to sleep by the sounds of the ocean and the occasional call of a seagull.

Until next time, Lucie

Lucie Vos