Lunch at The Dash Restaurant a 5-star experience


On early Wednesday afternoon we climbed up the unobtrusive stairs opposite the V&A Market on the Wharf to the Queen Victoria Hotel for our lunch date. Like most people, I was fully unaware that there are two 5-star boutique hotels, both part of the Newmark Hotel Group, towering over the V&A Waterfront hidden out of sight.

But as we walked into the spacious lobby of the hotel, we realised that we had just stumbled upon a real gem.

The contemporary classic design of the hotel and the friendly staff create a classy, yet very warm and welcoming atmosphere.

As we walked to the back of the lounge into the Restaurant Dash, we were informed that the restaurant is currently closed for lunch, as they had suffered water damage and were renovating the floor. Unfortunately, there had been a miscommunication and our reservations hadn’t been cancelled. But instead of being turned away, Craig, the manager of the Dock House, the smaller one of the two boutique hotels up on the plateau, accommodated us in the cosy breakfast room of the Dock House and went the extra mile to make us feel welcome. Cape Town is known for many beautiful things – unfortunately good service is not one of them. It was delightful to be treated by Craig and the rest of the hotel staff in such a friendly and professional manner. They truly serve by the code of hospitality and know how to put a smile on their guests’ face.

We were given the 3-course lunch menus by Dash and while we were deciding on what to eat, warm, homemade bread arrived at our table. The menu is small, but exquisite, which made choosing our meals a difficult decision. In the end, we ordered strawberry, beetroot and goat cheese salad and Asian style smoked salmon with pineapple salsa as starters, followed by Parmesan gnocchi with roasted vegetables and the sirloin steak with sweet potato fries as mains. Waiting for our starters to arrive, we chose a bottle of wine from the impressive wine list including many South African favourites and international wines.

Each course was arranged creatively and with lots of love on our plates, and as we dug into the colourful beauty, our taste buds rose straight to cloud nine. The chef truly understands how to combine different flavours to create a beautiful taste explosion in your mouth. In this restaurant you can taste the freshness of the ingredients, the chef’s expertise and the love that goes into the cooking. We were almost too full to order dessert, but we couldn’t resist the sweet temptations and ordered a warm pineapple and sage tart as well as a Crème brûlée to round off this amazing dining experience.

The Dash Restaurant will reopen for lunch at the end of August, but is open for dinner every evening of the week. When eating at a 5-star hotel, you have certain expectations, and Queen Victoria Hotel exceeded my expectations by far! I can highly recommend this restaurant to anyone, who would like to treat themselves to something special.

The best part? Both food and wines come at affordable prices. The Dash Restaurant runs a winter special for lunch and dinner until 31 August: 2- course meal (either starter and main or main and dessert) for only R275 per person.

And if you want to treat yourself to a royal weekend staycation, both the 6-room Dock House Boutique Hotel and the 35-room Queen Victoria Hotel offer great choices. Here you can relax in contemporary, secluded settings with all modern amenities and treatment fit for a queen (and king).

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Alexandra is a tourist guide, writer, translator for German & English, improviser and environmentalist with all her heart and soul. She enjoys experimental vegetarian/vegan cooking with high emphasis on organic and locally grown food. She is also a tea connoisseur (read: total tea snob). If she isn't hiking up some mountain, enjoying a glass of wine at sunset or getting down and dirty in her little garden, she is happiest driving down an unknown road and ending up at a place that turns out to be a still undiscovered gem.
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