I am not sure what is going on. It is nearly winter solstice, rainy season, in Cape Town and we are experiencing ridiculously balmy sunshine days and clear skies. So it was an obvious decision to take a Sunday trip out to the gorgeous seaside village of Kalk Bay.
I have eaten my way through Kalk Bay, several times, so I got pretty excited about trying out the newly opened tapas bar and restaurant, next to the Olympic Bakery, in the main road. Even more so when I discovered La Parada’s chef, Eva de Jesús Galán, hails from Spain and has worked in a 3 star Michelin Restaurant.
Expectations were high. And we were not disappointed. The restaurant is small and cosy with long gorgeous wooden tables that open up the possibility of sharing your tapas or drinks with complete strangers, which inevitably happens. It overlooks the ocean and other daytrippers stroll by your window as you leisurely nibble your way through the menu. Complimentary tapas are offered with your drinks. Eva’s marinated olives are delicious and spicy.
My Cousin of Awesomeness, who has been working in the industry for years and who has an appetite for life and food bar none, almost platzed when he sampled the fresh Serrano ham. He actually stopped talking for almost three minutes which is highly unusual. The Serrano ham is cured locally by a fellow called Lucas Jamon. True story. Jamon of course being the Spanish word for ham. Talk about being born into your destiny.
I love the yellowtail with salsa verde. Yellowtail is not my favourite fish as it can be quite wild and strong in taste but the team cooked this up to perfection, the salsa tames the fish somewhat and they grilled it to juicy perfection. The Cousin had the Grilled Lamb with honey mustard, garlic and rosemary and said it was utterly delicious but a little bit too much to finish. Hard to believe, anyway I am sure the car guard loved it. The crouquetas de jamon and prawn croquettes are creamy and utterly delicious. I can’t imagine a better way than to sample your way through an entire menu on a gorgeous sunny day. Kalk Bay and tapas are the perfect partners. The wine list has something for everyone and it is very reasonably priced. I was a little surprised to find only one dessert on the menu. But as soon as I tried the rice pudding, I understood, why. “There can only be one,” as the immortal Highlander once said before beheading his enemy. Or to quote The Cousin, “The most spectacular explosion of flavours in this perfectly prepared rice pud. Best I have ever had. BRAVA!”
La Parada tapas bar and restaurant is the newest addition to the Harbour House family. It trades Monday through Sunday from 12pm to late (the kitchen closes at 10pm). The coffee brand used is Tribe. 021.7883992 (no reservations) @taste_kalkbay