BOCCA, the bustling Italian eatery in the heart of Bree Street, Cape Town’s ‘restaurant mile’ is now under new ownership – experienced restaurateurs Guido and Adnana Brambilla – and the refreshed décor and inspired urban Italian menu has kept local foodies, and savvy tourists, flocking to one of the city’s most talked-about restaurants.
“BOCCA was a completely new adventure for us, but we have learned so much from the last year,” says Adnana. “We learned a lot about our own operations and we learned about making it through the quiet winter season. But most importantly we have learned a lot about what Capetonians like to eat!”
And with the weather in the Mother City warming up for summer BOCCA’s menu is on the move, with much-loved favourites returning and a host of new plates to tempt local palates.
“The menu is a living beast,” chuckles Guido, whose cheffing experience stretches from Milan to Bermuda and back again. “It changes all the time. For spring and summer, we have brought in many new dishes to encourage Capetonians and tourists to come back to BOCCA for another visit.”
There’s certainly a new focus on seafood on the revamped menu, with Guido blending local produce with Italian inspiration.
The popular Fritto Misto of crispy calamari, whitebait and mussels return to the menu for summer, alongside a superb plate of Italian-style Prawns. Simply seasoned with olive oil, white wine and lemon juice, they’re flash-roasted in the wood-burning pizza oven to lock in flavour.
Guido is already famous for using his authentic Acunto oven for far more than just the ever-popular pizzette. At the end of the evening, larger cuts of beef, lamb, poultry and pork are slow-roasted overnight for the following day’s meat-driven plates.
Locals will certainly love the new San Remo pizza, inspired by the flavours and traditions of Liguria in western Italy. Similar to the sardenara, a regional speciality with links to the French pissaladière, the San Remo packs a flavour punch of tomato, anchovies, capers, olives, oregano and garlic.
Another standout is the Spago di Mare, the spaghetti tossed in a flavour-packed reduction of mussel broth and prawn stock. Topped with fresh seafood and a sprinkle of roasted cherry tomatoes for sweetness, it’s in the running for Guido’s favourite dish at BOCCA.
To finish? Always a little dolce and the dessert selection has also had a shake-up for summer.
BOCCA is open for lunch and dinner from Monday to Saturday from noon until 22h00. Please note that last orders are taken at 21h30.
BOCCA is situated at The Block, corner of Bree St & Wale Street, Cape Town City Centre.
For more information visit www.bocca.co.za