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“WOW - with food this good who needs views!”
Review of Willoughby & Co

Willoughby & Co
Ranked #19 of 1,147 Restaurants in Cape Town Central
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $15 - $30
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Late Night, Breakfast, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations, Takeout
Cape Town, South Africa
Level Contributor
43 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“WOW - with food this good who needs views!”
Reviewed February 11, 2013

Consistency is key at Willoughby's - have been eaten there for the past 10 years and we never had a bad experience. The sushi is for sure the very best in the country - thanks to the wonderful Sam and his great team! BRING BACK THE DELICIOUS BOMB SAMMY - please! You can't go wrong by ordering any other item on the menu - even deserts are excellent - do yourself a favour and order the mille feuille - yummy layers of puff pasty and custard! I do feel spoiled for choice at this restaurant. Friendly - experienced staff.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Louise S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Date | Rating
  • Arabic first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
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English first
Level Contributor
328 reviews
207 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 208 helpful votes
“So good we went back there in the evening!”
Reviewed February 11, 2013

If you love sushi and fish you will love this restaurant. We only tried it the lunchtime the day before we left and it was unbelievable. Don't be put off by the long queue as it moves quickly. The food was out of this world being freshly prepared in front of you. It was so good we went back again that evening (having regretted not going there until our last day!) and it was just as good. Friendly service with a smile although the service could have been a little quicker with the drinks but it wouldn't put us off going back ;)

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Wishinguwerehere
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
530 reviews
246 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 248 helpful votes
“Still delivers excellent sushi”
Reviewed February 10, 2013

You wouldn't think that you would get good sushi in a shopping centre, but you can in Cape Town! I always plan a trip to Willoughbys when in Cape Town. Try to go a little later to avoid the lunchtime rush and sit at one of the counters, so you can watch them making the sushi.
Fresh, good quality sushi and light tempura makes it the number one choice for me. Service is also excellent and pretty quick if you are in a rush

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank lisasplaces
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cape Town
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“The trick to eating and dining at Willoughby's!”
Reviewed February 9, 2013

I am an avid fan of Willoughby's and have eaten there since I was 7 years old when I managed to get over the idea of eating raw fish. I have eaten Sushi all around the world - it is my favourite food and I am a big critic of it. I definitely think it is some of the best. Having said that and having read all the bad reviews of this place - I am offering the 'trick' to eating there.

THE MENU: is quite complicated and daunting. If you can agree to liking the following: salmon, tuna, prawns and mayonaise - then definitely go for the famous 4 by 4. Its amazing! The cooked seafood there is also great. However, its a sushi and seafood place - so if you're vegetarian - then you're not going to find anything riveting. Also stay away from the average foods such as the salads and smoke salmon sandwich - you can eat these things anywhere - so don't go to Willoughbys expecting this. The Signature cold and hot dishes are traditional cooked Japanese foods and I have tried almost everything - they are great. If it sounds good - it will be good. Also, VERY IMPORTANT - if you are ordering any rolls (all the signatures and california etc that come in a portion of 8) or fashion sandwich's... ask your waiter to have them "cut into 10 pieces" - the sushi pieces can be very big and uncomfortable to have so much fish in your mouth. This way the pieces are a normal bite size portion :)

THE QUEUE: As much as I love Willoughby's - I would never stand in that long queue - so if this is something you want to avoid - arrive to eat lunch between 12 and 12.45. It generally dies down by 3 o'clock too but shift of change overs for the waiters happens at 4 o'clock and therefore service can be a little all over the place as the change over happens. For dinner - arrive no later than 7 o'clock or at a push 7.30 when the line isn't too bad. The queuing issue sucks - but unfortunately that's the way it is and if you stick to these times you will find your patience being tested a lot less.

CHANGES TO DISHES: Obviously minor changes are accepted but because there are 3 kitchens at Willoughbys (seafood, sushi and then cooked Japanese food) - they don't like too many changes to the dishes. The idea is that if you want (as an example) your tuna nigiri seared - then someone has to fetch the dish from the sushi kitchen and take it to the Japanese kitchen where they actually have a stove - in such a busy restaurant, this can cause a lot of confusion. If you think this is unreasonable and the owner is out to make your dining experience troublesome - then stop and think about unlimited ginger and mayo that you order with your food which is free when most places will charge you up to R10 per pathetic little bowl of either.

"ARROGANT" MANAGEMENT: Okay, I have first hand experienced some questionable management behaviour but generally, complaints put forwards in a calm and kind manner which are also reasonable are met with solutions. I once ordered the Paella - expecting something completely different - its not your traditional paella which has the rice cooked in the sauce etc. but more a sauce poured over rice which was something I didn't enjoy. I never said anything but rather looked down at my plate with a confused expression and within 2 minutes the owner came up t me asking what was wrong - I told him and he immediately took the food and said I must not worry - and confessed that their way was very different and offered me something else. There! Reasonable :)

THE PRICES: Yes they are expensive! But as I said they do not charge you for extra ginger and mayo and you will find that with whatever you order - the sushi rolls are big and they are not stingy at all when it comes to portion size with any dish you order. (Reminder: ask to "cut into 10 pieces" - it was change your experience dramatically)

AMBIENCE: The mall is not ideal - but on a rainy day this could be perfect and there are definitely worse locations in Cape Town to have a meal. Its at least fast paced, energetic and vibey. Sitting at the sushi bars you can encounter interesting people and discuss your food and get recommendations!

I hope this helps everyone because I truly love their food. I am completely addicted to it and would love everyone to have the same experiences as I do when there. Obviously, nothing is perfect in this world and you might arrive on the wrong day at the wrong time when someone is simply being human and having a crap day. :)

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Ashvdh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tasmania
Level Contributor
173 reviews
62 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
“Interesting place to eat”
Reviewed February 7, 2013 via mobile

Don't let the shopping centre type of cafe put you of. Very good service and food with plenty of options. Three different kitchens in the one establishment quick easy and fresh probaly wouldn't go there for a romantic dinner but greAt to have a nice meal

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Dogsey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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