Paternoster, South Africa
Kobus van der Merwe
What makes it special: With a heavy focus on sustainability, Kobus van der Merwe’s restaurant in beautiful coastal Paternoster serves a seven-course menu built on local indigenous ingredients in dishes inspired by the surrounding landscape. With only 20 diners per sitting, the restaurant has an intimate atmosphere and, more importantly, maintains sustainability by keeping it small.
Where it’s at: In a building dating back 130 years, Wolfgat is built around an archeologically significant cave that is home to ceramic remains, sheep bones and ostrich eggshells dating back up to 2,000 years. With outdoor and terrace seating looking out onto the ocean in this quiet fishing village, Wolfgat is the perfect place to admire the stunning view and appreciate the provenance of the food, much of which comes from within 10km.
On the menu: The seven-course degustation is an intro to the flavours of West Coast South Africa, with dishes including springbok loin with Saldanha Bay mussels and veldkool, a perennial plant, and sourdough flatbread with wild sage and Wolfgat’s signature butter made with bokkom, a local salted and dried mullet.
About the chef: Raised on South Africa’s West Coast, Van der Merwe has been compared to Copenhagen chef René Redzepi for his love of foraging and championing local produce. He eats, sleeps and breathes sustainability and works closely with the local community to respect the region’s gastronomic heritage and traditions.