The perfect spot for a quiet dinner
BY DAY luxury coffee shop and pastry café Coco Safar is the perfect spot to set up your laptop or meet for a casual coffee date.
By night it transforms into a cosy space where guests can enjoy the new dinner menu and a sweet treat. The dim lights and soft music create the perfect setting for a quiet dinner.
Our welcome drinks were served at the cold brew station – a blood orange Bellini paired with a crispy bread pocket pillow.
The pocket pillow is filled with an olive oil ice cream with a hint of salt and garnished with basil.
There is the option of a two- or three-course menu with either a complimentary glass of wine or a non-alcoholic drink from the mixology bar.
We chose from the three-course menu and, except for three, the dishes were either vegan or vegetarian and gluten-free.
For starters, I had a panroasted cauliflower steak with leek veloute, oats and olive oil crumble.
My dining partner had the forager’s salad which is a bowl of broccoli, beetroot, pickled carrots, orange, red berries, herb-infused cucumber and hand-picked botanicals.
I enjoyed my partner’s salad more than my own dish.
The main course was a tough choice between slow-cooked smoked brisket with caper pomme purée, braised cabbage, chargrilled baby gem, lightly pickled cucumber and root vegetables and the ostrich lasagne, made with bechamel and mushroom soil.
As I settled for the latter, I was expecting the traditional square filled with meat and topped with cheese. I was wrong.
I have never had, and enjoyed, a bowl of lasagne without cheese.
Although the filling was a quite rich, the crunchy mushroom soil balanced it well.
The meat was also perfectly cooked and soft to the bite.
There was no way I was going to finish it all, so asked for takeaway so I could have the rest at home.
Dessert was another nice surprise – an olive oil ganache with mint pannacotta on a sponge, picked apple and cucumber, apple and lemon thyme ice cream, fennel and micro coriander salad and frozen yoghurt powder.
Who knew cucumber, apples and ice cream tasted so good together?
Coco Safar is in the Artem Centre Main Road, Sea Point.