Looking for an all-in-one hipster place? A hotspot in the city where you can go for breakfast, coffee, lunch, a work appointment, sundowner drinks, snacks and dinner? Then look no further, Clarke’s on Bree it is! Clarke’s Bar & Dining in Bree Street is the perfect alternative for your living room or office. They offer free Internet connection, both inside and outdoor seating, an extensive but easy food and drinks menu, views over a busy Bree Street, a stylish minimalistic interior (with enough greens) and a good atmosphere. A few weeks ago the Mr and me went for the first time to Clarke’s (on my ’to-check-out-list’ already for months), and we definitely will come back soon. What a cool place.
You can kick-start your day at Clarke’s with a simple, tasty and cheap breakfast as they do a Monday – Friday Special; between 8h00 – 9h00 you’ll get two farm eggs on toast with a coffee for R25. In an upmarket place. With free Wi-Fi to answer your mail or get some other work done. What a bargain! For a bigger (and bit more special) breakfast order for example the Huevos Rancheros (Organic black beans slow cooked in red wine, beer & smoked tomatoes with two fried eggs, house-made queso fresco, pico de gallo, topped with avocado & coriander – R62) or Avocado on toast with homemade Labneh (R45) and for the health lovers there is homemade granola with yoghurt and fresh fruit (R49), or go for the Healthy Breakfast smoothie, with blueberry, banana, chia seeds, hemp & flax seeds (R40). Don’t feel like health hipster trends? Then you can also simply dip your croissant (R18) in your cappuccino while reading the newspaper.
For an easy going weekday lunch Clarke’s is the place to be, too. What about pressed sourdough sandwich with duxelle, zucchini, baby rosa tomatoes, Swiss chard and smoked Mozzarella (R59), or a 12 hour braised beef brisket, blue cheese, braised cabbage and Emmenthaler sandwich (R63). Sounds delicious! For the carbohydrates-avoiders: there are also salads. For example the salad with baby gem, green beans, asparagus, broccoli, toasted pecans and lemon yoghurt dressing (R75) which sounds already yum, but you can even make it better and add chicken (R15), poached egg (R7) or avocado (R20). A perfect post work-out option. With your lunch salad or sandwich you could order a fresh juice or smoothie, for example the Green – with kale, Swiss chard, pear, celery, cucumber and mint (R35) or The Lemon – with lemon, ginger and apple (R30). During winter you can warm up with a soup and grilled cheese & tomato sandwich, together for R56. And they do burgers: a home-made meat burger (R85) and a homemade zucchini & beet vegetarian burger option (R85). Both come with fries or a salad.
Sundowner’s and Bar snacks
Probably my most favourite time of the day: Cocktail hour! Especially at Clarke’s because they do West Coast oysters with mignonette (finely chopped shallot with red wine vinegar) – R15 per oyster. And they make the best Bloody Mary’s, with a double shot of vodka, spicy taste and served with olives and beans (R63). Furthermore you can order 4 white wines by the glass and 3 red by the glass (unfortunately bubbly only by the bottle), several on-tap beers and bottled beers, and lots of spirits and whiskeys. For bar snacks they do olives (R53), roasted cashews & smoked almonds (R48), Pickles spicy beans (R40), twice fried fries with Aioli (R45), Rooster Dog topped with kimchi, Sriracha, miso mayo and toasted peanuts (R35), and (of course!) the oysters (R15 per oyster). The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, and I think it’s a perfect location to start the evening. Whether it’s with colleagues, friends or family it doesn’t really matter.
Dinner at Clarke’s is simple and comfortable. No fancy food, just food you could also have prepared at home (if you had the time and weren’t so lazy). For me it doesn’t matter they don’t really have an extensive dinner menu, as there are enough fancy places in Cape Town! Also the kitchen at Clarke’s is not that big and the guest sitting area neither. For dinner at Clarke’s you can order for example the Four cheese Mac & Cheese with a salad or a side (R58), a cauliflower soup with topped with pecorino and served with sourdough (R45), and the same style burgers and salads as you can have here for lunch. You could say the lunch and dinner menu is not that different. So when you are looking for fine dining or special food: skip! But when you are looking for affordable comfort food, not too much: go there for drinks and stay for a small dinner. And you can also stay for dessert at Clarke’s! They offer different flavours of ice cream (R15 per scoop), Today’s Sweet Pie (R42), Irish coffee (R48) and Italian Affogato (R33). The dinner cocktails are quite creative and spectacular. What about The Georgia Punch (Clarke’s Iced Tea, El Jimador & Souther Comfort over ice with orange & mint – R42), Acapulco (Clarke’s pineapple 3 Rum Punch, fresh OJ and a squeeze of lime – R58) and the White Russian (The Dude’s drink, Kahlua, Clarke’s house made vanilla Stolichnaya & milk – R48). I think I will discuss tonight with Other Half when we’ll visit Clarke’s next time?!
Ok, drinks in a jar.. is a bit too much “hipster-be-like” for a lot of people, but I quite like it. Especially when not only your eyes are pleased, but your taste senses are pleased too. And the taste of this Bloody Mary was really one of the best I ever had! The right amounts of tomato juice, vodka, lemon juice, Tabasco (Spicy!), black pepper and Worcester-sauce!
Clarke’s Bar & Dining is located on 133 Bree Street in Cape Town.
Monday: 07h00 – 17h00 (kitchen opens at 8h00, last order 16h45)
Tuesday – Friday: 07h00 till late (kitchen opens 08h00, last order 22h30)
Saturday: 08h00 to 16h00 (kitchen opens 08h00, last order 15h45)
Sunday: 08h00 to 15h00 (kitchen opens 08h00, last order 15h00)
I have not been asked or payed to write about Clarke’s. It’s my own opinion and we paid the bill ourselves. All photos are mine.