Lunch At The KitchenPosted: December 9, 2011
I met my friend Mieneke the other day for lunch and because she works in Woodstock (and I live just a couple of hundred meters away), we decided to try The Kitchen. There are some really cute, cosy quaint and quirky places in that area that offer amazing lunchtime food and for great value. Plus, most of it (I find), is pretty healthy too. Win!
The Kitchen is probably the most well-known because a few months ago when Shells Obama, America’s first lady was in town, she had lunch there and all of a sudden this little hole-in-the-wall eatery shot to stardom. Of course when you hear and read so much about a place, it only amplifies ones curiosity… so of course when Mieneke said, ‘Where do you want to go?’ I immediately suggested The Kitchen.
Driving along Sir Lowry Road (which at times is hard enough, what with having to contend with giant lorries and belligerent taxi drivers), The Kitchen is rather easy to miss if you aren’t purposefully looking out for it. Luckily though I spotted the sign and after driving around the block three or four times hunting for parking, I found myself in what has to be the loveliest little establishment.
One immediately gets the sense that seating is limited; two small benches spill out onto the pavement and inside- a longer bench runs the length of one of the walls. That’s kind of… it.
Cosy, homely and a little bit chaotic is what I’d best describe the atmosphere. I found the service to be friendly and quick and any questions were promptly answered with well-informed replies.
The menu is written on a big chalk board that hangs high on the adjacent wall like a masterpiece. The space is relatively small and I’ll admit I expected there to be more on offer but then again when I think of the size, this makes sense. The ‘signature’ or speciality of The Kitchen is without a doubt their extensive array of beautiful mouth-watering salads, and being a huge salad fan, I found myself salivating over each and every one. One of the popular dishes is their “salad plate” which literally consists of six different choices. I really like this idea because you can pick and choose whatever tickles your fancy.
They also serve sandwiches which come with home-made pesto’s pickles and mayo’s. Think fillings of salami & pecorino, Mellanzane & Danish Feta, Honey mustard sausage and grilled chicken. Mieneke and I finally decided that we’d share a salad plate. It was amazing and just what I felt like! Don’t you love it when that happens? You order something that you’re just craving at that very moment and it just hits all the right spots! I wasn’t full afterwards, but I was satisfied. We sat at one of the outside tables and watched the world pass by (As a side note- great place for people watching! After all it is Woodstock and filled with aberrant creatives!)
Being the chatty twosome that we are, there were no silences and without realising it, we were slowly being rained on. Cape Town does that to you, I’m afraid. We decided to go inside and order coffee and a little dessert. I had a mini chocolate brownie square and Mieneke ordered what looked like a dense lemon cake of sorts. I wanted to ask her if I could taste it but I wasn’t fast enough. It must’ve been good because it was gone in five seconds. Oh well… next time:)
Our lunch was short but sweet. Mieneke had to get back to work and I had errands to run but I think we chose the perfect spot for a midday meal. The Kitchen isn’t the sort of place I’d want to linger for too long over a serious DMC. However It’s filled with energy and there’s a great buzz (it can be a bit loud but I think that just adds to its character and charm). The decor is very unique and one can truly get a feel for the owner’s own style and taste. I’ve already said that it’s small and I think it can get quite cramped but at the end of the day, there’s a reason why people go there. It’s unpretentious, it’s relaxed, easy and if you drop or spill something- so what? It’s The Kitchen!