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“Beautiful setting, great food” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tokara Restaurant

Tokara Restaurant
Helshoogte Road (R310), Stellenbosch 7600, South Africa
+27 21 885 2550
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Ranked #11 of 163 restaurants in Stellenbosch
Price range: $12 - $22
Cuisines: French, Contemporary, International, Winery
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Large groups, Doing business, Special occasions, Scenic view, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Paris, France
Top Contributor
578 reviews 578 reviews
459 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 104 cities Reviews in 104 cities
259 helpful votes 259 helpful votes
“Beautiful setting, great food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2013

On the road from Stellenbosch to Franschhoek, at Tokara Winery there is eponymous restaurants run by excellent Richard Carsten. An amazing setting, with a beautiful view on the vineyards around but also absolutely delicious, sophisticated and originals cuisine. Everything looked so appealing that, being alone and not able to choose I end up ordering all starters, in half portion version. Good choice, as everything was amazingly good, with a special mark to pan fried calamari and prawn and original and interesting combination of sweet potato,mbutternut, goat cheese with nuts and pumpkin. Wine pairing arranged by the sommelier, focused on Tokara wines, was spot on.
Do not miss it, it is worth a trip !

  • Visited July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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321 reviews from our community

84% Recommend
    192
    81
    29
    12
    7
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
South Africa
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Beautiful restaurant, nearly excellent food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

This beautiful wine state has a wonderful restaurant and views.
Only disappointing dish out of the 6 we ordered was the calamari with veg which was unfortunately tasteless and unpleasant.
All the other meals were excellent.
I was slightly disappointed there aren't a range of salads on the menu.
Otherwise great.

  • Visited May 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manila, Philippines
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Family-friendly Lunch at the Deli”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2013

Perfect place to come with the kids for lunch- they loved the playground which was made out of natural materials, there were toys inside and a great kids menu. Delicious deli food in a relaxed but stylish setting, very friendly service in spite of it being a busy weekend. Try the olive oils and sneak off to the main wine tasting bit while the kids play outside. Lovely place!

Visited June 2013
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Durban, South Africa
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Second time around and still good!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2013

It was one of those inclement Cape winter evenings as we headed up Helshoogte to Tokara to entertain some valuable clients. Having not been there for about five years I wasn't sure what to expect but had seen on the net that Richard Carstens had taken up residence as their executive chef.[famous for his foam creations – I recall his strawberry foam with a longing for more!] I had experienced his cuisine whilst he was at Lynton Hall on the KZN South Coast some years ago and loved it.

We were splattered by gusting rain as we hurried from the car park to the warmth of the crackling wood fire in the open hearth which was welcoming indeed.

From the outset the service was without reproach from our bilingual waiter and waitress [our client was Afrikaans] both helpful, knowledgeable and with genuine smiles and willing to assist with all our needs.

I was inclined to start with the deep fried quail with roast beetroot, pickled daikon, ponzu & dashi cream but was lead astray by our blonde waitress to opt for one of the specials which was a wholesome sweetcorn and popcorn soup dibbled with vanilla cream - just the dish for the type of weather blustering outside. Our guest's wife followed suit whilst he and my colleague had the Pan fried calamari with crisp prawn risotto, almond gazpacho, parsnip & vanilla velote - all were awesome!

After a complimentary delectable sorbet palate cleanser we delved into our mains. Our client ordered a healthy portion of slow roasted pork belly with sushi rice, apple pickle & tamarind coconut sauce. He just had room to mop up the sauce with his last crust of bread roll before declaring he was well sated [I have watched in awe as he ordered and demolished a lamb shank with a portion of oxtail at Barrique Restaurant on the outskirts of Stellenbosch on a previous visit] so the portion was more than generous! The ladies both chose the line fish of the day and were very complimentary about every mouthful. I tried the pan fried springbok with parsnip puree, turnip,pear & teriyake butter, what a great choice - but not a puff of foam in sight! What happened Richard? Three of us ordered a ruby port to accompany our Chocolate pave' with Cointreau ice cream, confit orange & vanilla - truly decadent. Our client dived into the Artisanal cheese board washed down with another 'Klippies & Coke' whilst we decided to be loyal and sipped on a very robust Tokara red with our mains.

What a wonderful evening and highly recommended.

  • Visited June 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Redding, Connecticut
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
32 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“A terrific place for lunch”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013 via mobile

We spent two weeks in South Africa and this was the best lunch on the entire trip of good food. A pretty space with excellent service topped with tasty well prepared food does not do justice to this exceptional restaurant. It so too bad it is 9,000 miles from where we live.

Visited May 2013
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