Imagine having a dinner party, with delicious food and great company, but you don’t have to cook or clean. Sounds like a dream right?
This is exactly what you can experience at The Larder Café. Three times a week, they host a Supper Club, where you can enjoy a scrumptious meal with the whole family. It’s more intimate and homely than just going to eat out, but has all the perks.
I had the pleasure of going to The Larder Café in Claremont. It’s a quaint little café, filled with recipe books, cushions and culinary themed décor. Chef-patron Sonja Edridge has created such a comfortable space, it feels as if she has invited you into her home for a meal. This feeling is amplified by the friendly staff. Yes, they take your order and bring you food, but they happily engage in conversation too.
Because the café is small, it is not uncommon for other customers to join in your conversations. Sonja says strangers often get into conversations, push their tables together and leave as friends. This cosy environment has a great impact on your experience, and has gathered a fair number of regulars for The Larder.
The Supper Club happens on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays. Each day has a specific meal and the menu also includes starters and desserts, if you’re in the mood for a two or three course meal. Mondays is roast chicken night with all the trimmings. Fridays are for burgers and pizza.
I went on a Thursday night, aka curry night. As soon as my partner and I were settled, the lights were dimmed, the music turned up and the wine arrived. A big family sat at a table next to us and we spoke to them, but there was no pressure to continue the conversation.
Prior to opening The Larder, Sonja spent a summer cooking in Tuscany at Castello di Montepò for Italian nobility, worked on live cooking shows, spent 20 years in cooking and working with the culinary elite in London, and worked as a private chef. Knowing this, I was determined to eat as much I as could!
I opted for a Edamame, wasabi and pea dip, and beetroot and roasted garlic hummus with sourdough toast for starters. It was flavourful and light, a perfect lining for the main to follow. The curry of the day was a lamb rogan josh, with a side of basmati rice, sambals and aubergine raita. The rogan josh on it’s own was incredible, but when the sambals and raita were added to the mix, the combined flavours were out of this world. No wonder she got to cook for the likes of Johnny Depp and Dustin Hoffman. Sonja’s food is spectacular!
Dessert has both healthy and decadent options. There are always sugar/gluten free options and my partner decided to go for this with a dark chocolate mousse that was made with avo. It was delicious. I thoroughly enjoyed it even though gluten is my favourite food. I went for a yummy lemon meringue that hit every note perfectly. During the day, you can head on over for tasty breakfasts (including one called Johnny Depp) and yummy treats.
With a set menu each week, the pressure of choosing what to eat is gone, and you can focus on enjoying the night with your family and friends. The menu is on their Facebook Page, so you know what’s cooking. Not only is Sonja’s cooking exceptional, she is so humble about her extraordinary career. And her Supper Club is the ultimate dinner party in Cape Town!
When Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays
Where 8 Grove Avenue, Grove Building, Claremont
Cost R150 pp for Main Course, two sides and bottle of house wine
Contact +27 21 671 1958, [email protected], www.thelardercafe.co.za
Photography courtesy The Larder Cafe and Supper Club