I was very excited when I heard Cape Town had gotten a “gastropub”. I was even more excited when I heard that it had taken over the space where French Toast used to be, cause you see, French Toast was always “just a pretty face” to me. Absolutely beautiful venue, but absolutely disappointing food… could a fresh breath of air be just what this venue needed?
Dinner at the new The Odyssey Gastropub over in Bree St was needed…
Now for those who are going a gastro-what-now? Here’s the Wikipedia explanation:
A gastropub or gastrolounge refers to a bar and restaurant that serves high-end beer and food.
It’s quite a popular trend in Europe, especially the UK, and I had some great food at gastropubs during my recent travels.
Being an incredible venue space already, The Odessey still ticks all the boxes for the “pretty” part. They’ve done a nice decor revamp, but layout wise things are pretty much still the same. There’s a big bar downstairs & I think I spotted a flatscreen TV (good for watching the rugby there boys). Upstairs there’s a second, slightly swankier bar as well as the dining room. You get a really nice street view from up there, which means you can just tell the car guards that you’ll watch your own car through the window, thank you very much. 😉
Food wise, I wanted to try a good selection of things, so for starters my friend and I shared the caramelised beetroot tart (R50) with red onion & finished with chevin goats cheese, as well as the grilled Jalapeño poppers (R40) which is stuffed with a sweet chilli cream cheese.
Then for mains my friend had the stuffed chicken breast (R80) with spinach, pepperdew & riccotta cheese and lemon zest, wrapped in cured honey bacon, and served on a bed of root veg with a tomato chutney. And I opted for the sirloin béarnaise (R95) – a 200g cut served with parmesan mash & a balsamic tomato and rocket salad.
We both really enjoyed the beetroot tart. The poppers were good, not great, certainly not top 10 in Cape Town, but decent. But I have to be honest and say, the mains were both quite disappointing. The chicken was dry and my steak was bland. It felt like the kind of food one could execute much better at home.
We didn’t make it to dessert, but they all sit at the R45 mark with options like sorbet, brownies & sticky toffee pudding. And after chatting to people afterwards, apparently their free range pork ribs (R45 for starter portion, R95 for full portion) are quite good. But I can’t vouch for that personally.
Sadly I left feeling like it hadn’t quite broken that “just a pretty face” curse. The place was packed though, especially the bar downstairs. So it’s clearly a very popular spot for after work drinks and a bit of a party. Which is cool in it’s own right. I just won’t be rushing back there as a new favourite dinner destination.
For that reason I’m going to give The Odyssey a Miss K Kiss-o-Meter rating breakdown of:
If you’d like to pay them a visit yourself, here are all their details:
- Address: 199 Bree St
- Contact them on: 021 422 4084 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Opening hours: Mon – Fri, 12pm – 12am & Sat, 3pm – 12am