La Petite Tarte
One of the most decidedly Gallic bistros in Cape Town. The French model who established this neighbourhood favourite – a comforting nook carved into the side of the original Cape Quarter building in De Waterkant – may have sold up, but it remains one of the loveliest spots in the city to take a breather, either under the shade of the sidewalk trees, or wedged into a cushioned booth inside. It’s a pretty place, detailed with old-fashioned French tea tins and a few vintage-style crockery items, jars of fruit preserve, a single chandelier above it all, and Edith Piaf singing gently in the background. And the place smells as good as the food coming out of that tiny, single oven tastes. If you just want to fill a small gap, the oversized croissants are just the thing; perfectly crispy and fluffy and light. But check out the selection of interesting quiches displayed alongside the cakes and cupcakes, and – of course – the eponymous tartlets. But most are here
for the traditional Parisian croque monsieurs (there’s even a tomato-only version for vegetarians) and don’t miss the violet cupcakes topped with crystallised violet, made with essence of violet imported from France. Wine is, incidentally, also available.