If you’re looking for a dining experience that’s as fresh and uncomplicated as its name, then Mint Restaurant and Terrace is just the place. Whether you’re a guest at the majestic Taj Cape Town or wandering along St George’s Mall looking for a spot of comfort-food for breakfast, lunch or dinner, you’ll find just that at this beautiful bistro-inspired restaurant and terrace.

This is just what we had in mind when we visited on a warm winter’s afternoon. Just like Taj, Mint Restaurant and Terrace is steeped in history as it sits right in the room where coins were once minted. As we stepped inside, we were greeted by the delightful and ever-smiling Nokwanda who showed us to our table out on the terrace. Excitedly we glanced over the menu which pays homage to visionary Executive Chef David Tilly’s 19-year love affair with food and travel.

We were so spoiled for choice, Nokwanda had to come back a few times before we had settled on the delicacies we were to sample. Having placed our order for starters, we sat back with a lovely glass of Kanonkop Kadette and lazily watched the Cape Town folk stroll by.

A little while later, two deftly plated dishes were placed in front of us. Calamari Plancha (rocket leaves, confit tomato, garlic, lemon dressing) and Seared Tuna (quinoa tabbouleh, feta, with ginger tomato jam). Both looked so tasty that our “order envy” kicked in and we agreed to turn our luncheon into a shared tasting. There was little doubt as to the freshness of both plates as the tuna melted in our mouths and the lemony zing of the calamari left our taste buds tingling.

Feeling rather satisfied but oh so keen to taste more, we decided on the Kingklip (potato mousseline, tossed spinach with beurre blanc sauce) and Chalmar Fillet served with Café de Paris butter, confit new potatoes, garlic and cherry tomatoes. Again we sampled a bit of each other’s mains and savoured each delicious bite. This was turning into one of those long and lazy lunches and we weren’t complaining in the slightest. Chef Tilly popped over to our table for a quick chat and we could not help but shower him and his team with compliments. This was such a lovely touch which made us feel even more at home.

While sipping on another glass of vino, we perused the desserts on offer. It had to be the Baked Oreo Cheesecake with Dark Chocolate Sauce as well as the good old South African favourite, Malva Pudding with Custard and Naartjie Ice Cream. Both were a decadently dreamy note to end off a wonderful meal. With smiles on our faces and in our bellies, we sat for quite a while longer, enjoying the cosmopolitan atmosphere that had made us feel so welcome and content. As the afternoon slowly faded into twilight, we sipped on an espresso before bidding Nokwanda, Chef Tilly and the team adieu.If you’re a fan of sidewalk dining, Mint is a 5-star culinary experience from start to finish. It’s one that needs to be at the top of any aspiring foodie’s list.

With weekly specials from 18:00 – 22:20 at R175pp and Table for Two specials at R195pp you’d best book your spot on the terrace soon!