The style of Cheyne Morrisby’s latest culinary venture truly comes alive in the two seating areas inside: in the one room, a large graffiti mural of a geisha pulls you in, while the adjacent alcove hosts the bar, a few tables and is lit up with a neon sign that cheekily instructs you to “drink sake stay soba”. Speaking of, the wine list has a very good range of local wine and sake, including the more unusual sparkling version of the Japanese rice wine. The sharing menu is divided into Ocean, Land, Earth and Sweet. From Earth comes a bowl of edamame dressed with smoked bonito salt and yuzu butter; and a crispy bowl of duck fat chips. While the meat dishes look tempting: beef short rib gyoza, pork belly, crispy duck, we dive instead into the Ocean section. The Nori Tuna Taco with anchovy aïoli and wakame seaweed is textural heaven: seared tuna strips on bubbly taco, topped with shredded veg and seaweed. The delicately plated pan-fried scallops get scooped up with smoked avo purée, crispy bacon and tobiko caviar. Sweet caters for everyone: from chocolate and tonka bean bowls to artisan cheeses with Japanese pickles and toasted hokkaido, rounding off an innovative menu. Grey Boutique Hotel, 49 Napier Street, De Waterkant; 064-661-7474.
By Malu Lambert