Hang out at The Kitchen at Maison, Franschoek
Fine dining doesn't have to mean stuffy formality. At least, it doesn't here. We'd been recommended The Kitchen by a friend who had worked with the head chef and the food was sensational – beef hung for 60 days and bone marrow cooked to an exquisite jelly were two of our favourite courses. We ate it out on a verandah, chatting to the folk at the next door table, and looking out onto a lawn where large groups sat at refectory style tables – and a huge dog called Eames roamed freely around, making friends with everyone. The owner of the place, Chris Weylandt, runs a modern furniture design empire, and it shows not just in his dog's moniker but also in the brilliant detail of the decor, and the way he's created a highly chic yet informal space for dining. Oh – and the shiraz from their vineyard is some of the best you'll drink in South Africa.
By Emma John, AFAR Local Expert
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R45, South Africa