Situated at Shop 110 – The Rockwell, Napier Street Green Point, The Mess, Restaurant & Bar offers casual dining with good food in a convivial and elegant setting.
THE NAME – The word mess dates back to the 15th century when a group of people who ate together was known as a ‘mess’ and brings to mind the military and naval tradition of referring to the dining hall where soldiers and sailors ate as ‘the mess’. The mess, historically, was a communal dining space; a home away from home – a place of companionship and camaraderie. The word ‘mess’ also has its roots in the old French word mes, meaning a portion of food. And who can deny that eating good food with friends can sometimes be a messy affair.
THE OWNER – Carlene de Gouveia envisaged The Mess being the social hub of food and wine loving Capetonians and visitors alike. It’s a place to meet, hang out, celebrate and bring the family for a delicious supper where you don’t have to do the dishes.
While globe-trotting across many countries Carlene noted her favourite dishes and kept them stored in her memory bank for when she would open her own spot in her beloved City-by-the-sea.
THE CHEF – Luke Wonnacott of Lukefoodalways Consultancy worked with Carlene to create an eclectic menu that focuses on shared plates of good quality fresh ingredients. Platings are attractive and bursting with natural colour, a preview of the delicious celebration of flavours to follow. The menu, while varied, is quite small making sure that each dish is expertly prepared using only the freshest, finest ingredients.
THE FOOD – If you like communal dining, try portions of Saldanha Bay oysters, with mignonette vinaigrette; or the confit pork belly with smoked apple and braised cabbage or the generously-sized sharing plates of yoghurt and thyme flatbreads with mezze of French confit duck rillette and pickled beetroot, white bean and tahini Pâté with pine nut and mint vinaigrette and pickled goats’ cheese with Moroccan nut dukkha.
The menu includes: Asian Beef Tataki with ponzu dressing complemented by a serving of lime-infused tuna ceviche with a coriander and spring onion salad; a Mexican spicy squid taco with smoky mayo or pork belly taco with smoked apple and charred corn slaw. Be tempted by Italian Aubergine Melanzane with grilled aubergine, fior de latte, tomato ragout, pine nut and Parmesan crumble which is as tempting as the fall-off-the-bone American Southern staple of pork loin ribs which of course, should be eaten with your hands.
If sharing is not your style then order your own: Choices are varied from a Cape Malay vegetable curry with smoked apricot couscous, flatbreads and tomato chili jam; Angus rib-eye or beef fillet with sides of charred broccoli and dukkha, thick cut fries and truffle mayo and confit crackling pork belly, braised red cabbage, smoked apple, and fennel jus.
The Desserts – choose from a traditional crème brûlée, or delight in the dark chocolate lava cake which is served with white chocolate and lime ice cream and roasted hazelnuts or indulge the Fromage Blanc Eton Mess – a fromage blanc and vanilla panna cotta with meringue shards, naartjie sorbet and seasonal berries. Or share the delectable Cannoli to go with your coffee.
The drinks – enjoy a cocktail from the list of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks at the spacious bar or choose a wine from the changing selection of wines from Carlene’s cellar.
The elegant outside area is protected and prettily lit up with fairy lights and is ideal for balmy summer evening dining. So call some friends; stay for dinner and feel at home– because it’s a helluva MESS.
The Mess, Restaurant & Bar is situated at Shop 110 – The Rockwell, Napier Street Green Point. Open Monday to Saturday from 18h00 till late. The kitchen closes at 22h00. For dinner reservations please call 021 418 3910 or book online at http://themess.co.za