#CTLucky7: Seven ways to carbo-load for the Cape Town Cycle Tour

1. Get fresh – go bakery hunting!

From cult-status bacon croissants to breads made with ancient grains, there’s plenty to sink your teeth into at these top bakeries. Read more

2. Explore the noodles of the East

Before you explore the roads of the Cape, why not dig into a carby broth? It’s pork, citrus, soy and beer flavours for the win at what’s been called Africa’s top spot for ramen. Read more

3. Do carbs the Cape Town way – try a Gatsby!

Filled with slap chips, salads and meat, this legendary local dish doesn’t hold back on filling you up. Read more

4. Hit the trail and catch a market

Chow your way through the Tokai forest market on Saturday, after a fun warm-up ride along the nearby pine-covered, dappled paths. Read more

5. Taste Italian tradition.

Chef Giulio Loreggian brings memories of his mama’s kitchen to life in his famous Pollo Pesto Linguine at this fresh, modern spot in Cape Town’s bustling city centre. Read more

6. Taste (and cycle) your way through the Cape Winelands.

Called the gourmet capital of South Africa, Franschhoek holds a heritage of cuisine and some of the best off-road biking trails. Get your carb on at La Motte, one of the top estate restaurants in the valley. Read more

7. Get your coffee fix

Need a caffeine boost while browsing cycling gear or giving your beloved bike some TLC? Try one of these cycling-based coffee spots: &Bikes Cafe and Bicycle Boutique in Loop Street, The Handle Bar on Hans Strijdom Avenue, Breakaway Café on Waterkant Street or Starling and Hero Bicycle Café at The Woodstock Exchange.

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10 Cape Town sushi spots to suit every pocket

How deep are your pockets? That’s the first question you need to ask yourself before setting off for an evening of sushi in Cape Town.

If they’re not too deep, you’re in luck: Cape Town abounds with affordable sushi restaurants. What’s more, if you dine at lunchtime you’ll find set menus and discount a la carte offerings that make a sushi meal seem like a bargain. In the city centre Active Sushi is usually a good bet, while the low-key Café Paparazzi in St George’s mall serves office workers a quick sushi lunch at good prices. Out of the city centre, Salushi in Claremont and Empire Sushi on Sea Point’s Main Road both offer top-notch sushi at good prices.

If you have a few extra rands to spare, you’re spoilt for choice. Locals swear by Willoughby’s & Co. at the popular V&A Waterfront shopping precinct: the sushi is excellent, and well priced for the quality. The downside? You’re eating in a shopping mall. If you’re going to eat sushi in a mall, rather do it at nearby Balducci’s where you can at least enjoy the harbour views.

Or, better still, head for Izakaya Matsuri. Hidden behind The Rockwell hotel in Green Point it’s a little hard to find, but worth seeking out. Forget boring old California Rolls and look forward to the likes of crunchy tempura eel, and spider rolls with real crab legs. Make sure you start with the excellent miso soup.

In the bohemian suburb of Observatory, 1890 Sushi House is a local favourite with plenty of charm to match the excellent sushi. It’s a little off the beaten track for tourists, but combines excellent value with extremely good sushi. Ask if they have eel available: their Dragon Rolls with roasted eel are memorable.

Takumi in the city centre is also memorable, not least for the famously cantankerous sushi chef known simply as Papa-san. Tucked away a few steps from buzzy Kloof Street, this is a great option for a platter before a party. Papa-san likes to get creative, so although you’ll find good rolls and sashimi here, get ready to be adventurous.

The same goes for Kyoto Garden, just up the road. This serene, stylish restaurant offers perhaps the most authentic Japanese cuisine in the city, and before you move on to sushi you shouldn’t miss out on the array of Japanese-inspired dishes. It’s expensive, but worth every cent for top-notch cooking. The sushi blends authenticity with adventure, and some of the finest fresh fish in the Mother City. Save your rands and pay it a visit.

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10 perfect pizzas in Cape Town!

If you don’t mind the anonymity of a chain restaurant, Col’Cacchio is easily the best choice. Famed for their super thin bases and generous toppings you’ll find the brand across the city, but the branch in Camps Bay dishes up lovely seaside views for free.

In Granger Bay near the V&A Waterfront, The Grand also boasts sea views, and the salmon and rocket pizzas are excellent, if expensive.

Up the road at Posticino in Sea Point the focus is on great value balanced by quality pizzas. This place buzzes with locals almost every night of the week, so get there early to bag a table.

The same goes for Bocca in the city centre. They don’t take reservations, but their Neapolitan-style pizzas are so delicious even impatient locals will wait in line for a table.

If you don’t fancy waiting, try Bardelli’s in trendy Kloof Street where the tables in the small courtyard are prime property.

In Hout Bay, Massimo’s has developed a cult following for its authentic Italian pizzas. With a small playground out front it’s a great option for families who want both a relaxed environment and great food.

The same goes for Borruso’s in the leafy suburb of Kenilworth: this unassuming pizza restaurant attracts hordes of locals with its good value thin base pizzas that come flying out of the wood-fired oven each evening. It’s wildly popular; if you’re not there by 7pm you’ll be waiting in the courtyard for a table.

On the False Bay coastline, Satori does wonderful wood-fired pizzas in a trattoria-style restaurant.

You won’t be denied your slice out in the winelands beyond Cape Town either.

The delightful tasting room and restaurant at Mulderbosch is popular with locals for its thin base pizzas, where parents can tuck in while the kids run riot at the nearby playground. In Somerset West, stop in at The Millhouse Kitchen on Lourensford Estate where you’ll also find the trinity of great pizza, good wine and plenty of space for the family to spread out.

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Feasts, flavours and family at Giuilio’s Cafe

“Most of my childhood was spent in the kitchen, watching my mom and nonna use their love of food and cooking to bring our rather large family together around the table. After all, the only way to quiet down 30 rambunctious Italians is to put food in their mouths.”

With this upbringing it’s small wonder Giulio Loreggian, owner /chef of the Giulio’s Café, turned his back on finance studies and headed back to his roots in the kitchen. After doing some training in Cape Town, he packed his bags for London – and ended up working in the kitchens of internationally renowned chef, Jamie Oliver, before later heading home to open Giulio’s Café in 2015.

Located on the corner of Loop and Riebeek streets in central Cape Town, Giulio’s Café is a beautiful calming escape from the bustling city scenes on its doorstep. Go there for the legendary iced coffee, try one of the breakfasts with an Italian twist, choose fresh salads from the Mangia table or tuck into the Mediterranean-Italian love affair that is the open lamb wrap. Behind it all is family – a big Italian one.

“One of the things I’ll never forget was my dad making us eggy-on-bread. He made a concoction of boiled eggs scrambled with tomato sauce, mayonnaise and salt and pepper on soldiers. He fed us choo-choo trains,” says Giulio who grew up in Johnannesburg. “But the napolitana and bolognaise pastas Mom taught me were the first real Italian dishes I made. She always said, ‘if you can make these, you can learn to make anything’.

“What inspired me about working with him [Jamie Oliver] was the idea that everything must be fresh, healthy and locally sourced.” And this is reflected in the café’s Mangia table, which almost groans under the weight of the freshest, vibrant salads Giulio whips up every day.

“Everyone says this has been my dream,” says Giulio, “but it stemmed from my mom’s dream. I hope that one day I can hand this over to her when we start a few more. [Until then] I’ve got to keep her busy otherwise she drives me crazy.”

At the moment, mama Franca only comes into the café for a few days to two weeks every month. “The best part is how she connects with our clients. To her, everyone is family. When we were growing up, everyone was welcome at our house, at our table. It’s amazing the way my regulars miss her when she’s away and get excited when she comes back. Sometimes I’ve thought I should change the name to Franca’s!”

This isn’t the only way family has influenced the café – the menu as a whole is based on what Giulio’s family love to eat every day. He says that if he can please these people and they eat a lot, he knows he’s pleasing a lot of people. Mother and son also want to preserve and pass on some of their family traditions. “I want to make a series of real Italian cakes,” says Franca. “You know, I don’t want us to lose our culture. We should pass on our recipes from generation to generation.”

“She just wants to make everyone fat!” chimes in Giulio with a grin. “Actually, at the end of the day, we just want everyone to leave here happy and satisfied.”

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