It’s the time of the year when Cape Town dishes out near perfect weather on a daily basis, which means that those of us who are busy adulting in offices for most of the week are left to stare longingly out of tinted windows, shivering in the blast of an overly-enthusiastic air-con unit, wishing we could run off to the closest beach and soak up some Vitamin D. So when I was invited to try the new summer menu at Shimmy Beach Club a few weeks ago I enthusiastically agreed. It was the perfect excuse to spend a day sipping Sauvignon Blanc and watching the sunshine break into diamonds on the ocean surface just a stone-throw from my table.
Shimmy’s has become a well loved hangout for locals and tourists alike, and has secured themselves a name as one of the top party spots during the summer season. Tuck your toes into the warm sand, take a dip in the pool, sip on a cocktail while enjoying the ocean breeze and enjoy top DJs throwing down from the stage. You’ll easily imagine yourself on some exotic location, and certainly not at the back of the Cape Town harbour.
We were served a tasting menu representing the full dishes that diners can order on their visit. On arrival we were treated to a selection of cocktails and while I’m not typically a fan of sugary drinks (what can I say, I’m a wine lover), I give the piña colada a thumbs up! It was light, fresh and packed with flavour without being overly sweet.
No sooner had we settled down at our table overlooking the cool blue waters when giant bamboo baskets were placed in front of us, opened to reveal a tempting selection of steaming dim sum, with a few brand new options that have launched this season. If you follow me regularly you’ll know I’m a huge fan of food that can be shared across a table and for this reason I think the dim sum is a brilliant option for a summer gettogether. They’re not the most delicate I’ve tasted in Cape Town but they were certainly tasty and the prawn toast was a clear favourite among my fellow foodies.
We worked our way through the larger part of the menu and most of what we tried got smiles, nods and lip-smacks across the table. In terms of a main course my favourite was definitely the mushroom burger, with charred spinach, basil pesto and goats cheese. I would even go so far as to say I prefer it over the famous Moodie Burger, though this is a strong contender with a jalapeno and feta patty wrapped in bacon and topped with avocado, tzatziki and toasted cumin. Yes, it is as just indulgent as it sounds.
I also enjoyed the tacos, which you can order from their Pool Deck Menu. You have a choice of tempura fried tofu, salmon or tuna ceviche, all served on a base of salsa and guacamole with a spicy tomato relish.
We were just about ready to lie down on the hot sand for a quick afternoon nap but first we had to one, majorly important task to complete.
Hey, I think if you’ve worked for months to achieve a chiseled summer body (okay fine, a fairly slimmed figure) then you deserve a little indulgence. I am, however, of the opinion that if you’re going to carb, carb well. Choose the most delicious guilty pleasure and savour every morsel. So with that philosophy in mind I can definitely recommend the Banoffee Cheesecake, a smooth, creamy dessert with decadent banana and coffee flavours, a crunchy banana preline on the side, and a sticky salted caramel sauce dripping down the sides. I was completely stuffed even before my first spoonful and yet I couldn’t resist licking the last bit off my plate.
The Shimmy Summer Menu launched in October and will be available until April 2017. Price-wise you’re looking at starters between R80 and R135, Mains between R125 and R340, and desserts between R85 and R90. The Dim Sum comes in three pieces per portion, starting at R45 and going up to R95.
As you’d expect from a Cape Town tourist hot spot you’re going to spend a little, but overall you’re in for a fun day out. Get a group of friends together, order a few rounds of cocktails and kick off your shoes. Summer only comes once a year.