Food markets are undoubtedly one of the most fun ways to eat out. You get to browse, and taste, and chat with the makers, while mingling with lots of other happy people. By now, everyone knows about the trendy Neighbourgoods Market in Woodstock’s Biscuit Mill and the vibrant Bay Harbour Market in Hout Bay. However, their very popularity can be a drawback. Parking, crowds, and queues can sometimes become a bit of an issue.
Parking is on a big green field with plenty of room. (Considerate guards with flashlights even walk you back to your car after dark so that you don’t trip over a tussock.)
The spacious grounds absorb crowds with ease, and there’s ample seating. Choose a table inside the venue, outside on the terrace, or spread a blanket on the sweeping lawns, which overlook the long stretch of beach from Noordhoek to Kommetjie. There’s loads of room for kids to play. Meanwhile, grown ups can relax and drink in the heady views (and wines), usually accompanied by a spectacular sunset.
Queues are a non-issue. There are plenty of stands serving exciting eats to entice everyone from the strictest vegan to the most rapacious carnivore. You won’t wait more than a couple of minutes to be served. Even the bar, where there’s a good selection of local craft beer and excellent wines, is prompt and pleasant.
I sipped on a pint of Raspberry Krystal Weiss from CBC as we sat at a table watching the sun go down. I thought how ridiculously lucky we were to be enjoying this beer, this view, this place. There was, however, one major difficulty we experienced: deciding what to choose for dinner. So many yummy things – and only one stomach each!