I dream of Africa – and am breathing in wonderfully fresh ocean air!

After leaving Stellenbosch on a rainy morning we drove across the mountain pass to Franshoek – another lovely little town, with more of a French influence, and plenty of retail therapy opportunities!

From there through this very fertile corner on the country – vineyards, apple orchards, endless wheat fields, and strawberry fields down to Kleinmond on the coast! Aah! I’ve been waiting for this and am not disappointed. Creamy surf crashing on the beach; mountains meeting the ocean, and the best calamari I have had for ages! We stopped in Betty’s Bay to see the southern African penguins which are smaller than their South American cousins.

Our guest house, Villa Marine, is even more than I’d imagined. The surf is crashing on the rocks right beneath us and I look forward to sleeping with the doors open tonight and hearing that amazing sound all night long!

Somewhere back in the planning stages I read about a small restaurant Hook, Line & Sinker in Pringle Bay, and that reservations were necessary. I asked our guest house host to make us a reservation for tonight. We had a hard time finding the place – on a dirt road with no signage for the restaurant; the only guidance was that it has a blue roof! lots of good in the dark!!! Anyway, we arrived and found Stefan and Jacqi sitting there waiting for us! First of all we were the only guests and then another couple arrived. We enjoyed a delicious meal of spicy tomato mussel soup and a portuguese fish stew, salad, fish and wild prawns cooked over an open wood fire with just the right spices to add some punch, but not too much to take away from the delicious fresh flavors of the fish and prawns. We finished off with creme brûlée and chocolate mousse!  In their own words:

Hand picked fresh line fish is prepared over an open fire by chefs Stefan and Jacqui, which is not only fascinating to watch but a treat to eat. The menu is seasonal and dependent on available seafood but on any given day expect to eat a mixed platter which includes something like seared tuna marinated in ginger, limejuice and coriander, Cajun grilled clamari, fried monkfish and green peppercorn sauce and wild Mozambique prawns.

At Hook Line and Sinker, the atmosphere is as important as the food. First time visitors quickly become friends and there’s always a piece of wall (or ceiling!) and a marker pen available to write a few words about your experiences with us. Casual and relaxed, we chalk the day’s menu on the blackboard over the kitchen area. You can be certain that whether you choose a seafood or a steak evening, that your meal is as fresh as we can buy it from our own wet fish shop, or local markets.


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