Date Night at Rick’s Cafe Americain

26 Jun

Last night, I wanted to take SC out for dinner to thank him for being so super amazing.

We took a while to decide where to go, and eventually headed to the V&A Waterfront, specifically to have mussels at a place which [allegedly] does amazing mussels. There is a “red tide” happening at the moment, so no mussels for us. I felt bad, but since I had gone there specifically for the mussels, I simply couldn’t stay [although I shall be back!]. Stupid red tide. 

The second place, which was nearby, was the newly opened Cape Town branch of a Parkhurst restaurant I love. We sat down, and only a few minutes after looking at the menu [and after ordering water] did it emerge that this place did not have a liquor license. They mentioned that we could go buy a bottle of wine next door, and followed this suggestion with the fact that the bottle store had already closed for the day. People, it’s DINNER. There are candles, and couples, and it’s freezing outside. Assume customers are not teetotalers, and might want to warm up with a glass of red. Or just think logically, and mention this to them as they walk in.

So we left, because we really wanted a glass of wine.

Eventually we ended up at Rick’s Cafe Americain, in Park Street. I had heard good things, and people weren’t lying.

The decor is great and, of course, a nod to Casablanca. Of course. There is a smoking section, if that floats your boat, and all sorts of different sections separated by glass and staircases which create an interesting flow throughout the place. Situated in an old Victorian-style house, the walls are covered in Casablanca posters, tagines stand on display, and best of all, there are fireplaces!

They also make pretty good Gluhwein, which was exactly what I needed/wanted.

The menu has everything from mezze platters and cheese boards to burgers and pasta. There is seafood, comfort food like bratwurst and mash, and meat lovers’ dishes like rib-eye steak and pork fillet. And then are the more interesting dishes such as lamb tagine [complete with almonds, apricots, and cous cous] and even springbok tagine!

SC had the lamb tagine, which was delicious! I rarely have order envy, but wowee did I want to steal all his food. I had beef fillet with roast veg and fries and the most delicious jus I have ever tasted! Initially I ordered kingklip, and I wasn’t entirely happy with it. But the thing is, food isn’t always perfect at restaurants. It happens. It’s how they deal with complaints that matters, in my opinion. Sure, if you have to send every meal back it’s a problem, but it’s worse when sending food back turns into an awkward situation. Some managers/chefs/waiters get stroppy when you complain. But the waitress and manager were very polite, assured me they were hugely apologetic and I could order something else, checked up on me repeatedly, and so forth. I wasn’t made to feel awkward, and our waitress was friendly, warm, and enthusiastic.

Overall the food was good, the prices were reasonable, and the vibe was great. We loved sitting by the fireplace, and our waitress made the experience quite lovely. And personally, I would go back. For more gluhwein, and some tagine!

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