The rolling hills, valleys and wine country surrounding Constantia seems to transport the exploring local to a far away land. Constantia seems to have a different climate to the rest of Cape Town and an afternoon lunching around under the oak trees is a pretty regular affaire. Women who brunch, is definitely a well used term in this area and La Belle has all you need for a gorgeous sunny day out in Cape Town.
Nestled a stones throw away from the busy M3 highway, La Belle is a Bistro and Bakery part of the Kove Collection group famously known for their restaurants and wines.
The towering oak trees provide the perfect canopies sheltering you from the sun while you watch the resident squirrels scurrying from branch to branch. A spacious outdoor seating area can accommodate a huge group of people while remaining private and adding a touch of sophistication with outdoor heaters and cosy blankets for the chillier Spring days in Cape Town.
Walking inside the bakery, the smell of freshly baked pastries and confectionary can be smelt wafting through the air long after breakfast time and are available for purchase if you are sure they can make it home without a nibble or two.
An extensive library of alcoholic spirits line the wall to ensure you are well suited to a cocktail of your choice to sip away on while you enjoy everything this gorgeous bistro has on offer.
The inside seating area of the restaurant is elegantly comfortable, with leather couches, wooden trim and fresh flowers making you feel a sense of home away from home.
We decided to sit outside where we enjoyed the chirping of the birds welcoming in the Spring season as our waitress Audry took very good care of us.
She was well versed in the menu, the specials on offer and sized us up in a blink of an eye. She was able to recommend based on the mood and type of food we were in the mood for. With a menu filled with inspiring dishes, we felt it best to order a cocktail or two to cheers to a day out in this gorgeous side of town.
A Gin martini shaken and a strawberry Gin slush were the perfect tipple’s to enjoy as welcome drinks. At lunch time on a Saturday afternoon you would be lucky to find a take-away in town or along the atlantic seaboard. It was so refreshing to cozy up for a leisurely lunch without the fuss and copious amounts of people around.
Aubry recommended a few dishes and as we had just visited another one of their incredible restaurants under the Kove collection – Lily’s (you can read my full review on Lily’s by following the link.) The menu seemed to have a similar thread of brilliance that we enjoyed. The style of food is remarkably well priced for the generous portions of delicious bistro style food.
After much deliberation we opted for the following on the menu:
Fried Squid, white Gazpacho, Almonds and Green Grapes paired with the Gin Martini
Crispy Buttermilk Chicken, Cabbage and Celery Slaw with a Spicy Aioli paired with a Strawberry Gin Slush
Grilled Kingklip, Green Pea Fricassee, Mint, Lemon, Crispy Pancetta and New Potatoes paired with the Kove Collection Blend
Porcini compound Butter Fillet, Cipollini onions, Baby Button Mushrooms and Potato Puree paired with the Kove Collection Red
Cheesecake Brûlée, Fresh Strawberries and a Vanilla Shortbread
Sugar and Spice Apple Crumble, Cranberries and Vanilla Ice Cream with a Red Cappuccino
The starters definitely live up to their reputation. The Kove Collection group has a famous reputation when it comes to perfecting starters. In fact most people order a variety of starter plates to share before browsing the dessert menu to cure their sweet tooth. It was no different. La Belle definitely pulled out all the stops when its comes to wetting the palate with sophisticated well balanced and well loved flavours.
The mains were on the more comforting side. Full portions with lavish and abundant flavour notes perfectly paired with the Kove Collection wines.
“A lady of lunches” is the perfect expression I would use to dub myself while I sipped on my chilled glass of wine, listened to the birds chirping, squirrels scratching at the branches and felt the sun beaming through the leaves onto my face.
It was dessert time…
Our dessert course was definitely another one of my favourites. Classic well-known desserts that had deliciously fresh flavour profiles made for the perfect sweet ending to a day well spent at the Alphen estate.
Venture out to new restaurants, try new foods, experiment with new cuisines and learn from other cultures. Some of the best days spent are aimlessly driving to a new destination and creating memories. Next time put La Belle into your GPS, I promise you will find a new favourite lunch spot.
La Belle at the Alphen Estate
TEL: +27 (0) 21 795 6336
The Alphen Boutique Hotel, Alphen Drive, Constantia, Cape Town, South Africa
Monday to Sunday, 7am to 11pm
Although I was invited to have lunch, all the photographs and opinions expressed are my own. I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon and look forward to visiting La Belle again soon – especially after I saw their breakfast menu on offer…drool!