Purely Local CT 2021

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We’re spoiled for choice when it comes to interesting and delicious food and, after months and months of lockdown, it’s never been more important (or delicious) to support small business! We chat with Pamela McOnie, a tour operator who created a whole new food community during lockdown. When the owner of Cape Fusion Tours stopped operations at the end of March, she was amazed at how her friends in the food business were adapting. “I marvelled at how many of them were pivoting and starting new ventures,” says Pamela McOnie. Three weeks later she had a website up-and-running, where local food artisans from chefs and caterers to producers and growers, could showcase their wares. Run in conjunction is the extremely popular Facebook group, and you don’t have to scroll too far down the page to find what you're looking for. An assortment of pastries delivered straight to your door for the weekend? Check. Tantalising curries cooked by a world-class chef? Check. Handmade pestos, jams and sauces? Check, check, check! While the website is a one-stop-shop for all sorts of food goods and services from small, artisanal businesses, the Facebook group has become a place for local food businesses and foodies to connect, share and offer support. “The outcome of this pandemic for me is that we have become a closer community,” says Pamela. “We are more conscious of where we spend our money. Our gut instinct is to try and assist in any way that we can. It has become about connecting with real people.” And connection has never been more important. Lockdown has impacted every facet of the food supply chain – from farmers to chefs, and everyone in between. “Spending your money to support our local foodpreneurs will keep their heads above water and we will be able


to have a foodie city to return to one day,” says Pamela. “Think about your footprint when you purchase. Let’s stop buying imported food and support the people in our city wherever we can. We are a community.” Forced to innovate by the Pandemic, small food businesses around the Mother City have risen to the occasion. “I am blown away by people’s creativity!” says Pamela. She says that she’s loved seeing chefs creating amazing meals to be enjoyed in home, and believes it’s going to change how we do take-aways in the future. “Getting a dish that just needs the last final bit of cooking at home changes the final product completely. I have never had a take away that has tasted as good as that.” “Food vendors have come up with the most wonderful ideas and every day I learn more and more about the vendors in our city. We can pat ourselves on the back. Wow, we have such wonderful offerings on our doorstep - why on earth was I shopping at Pick n Pay and Woolies for so many years?!” Pamela says she’s enjoyed every second of her journey since she started Cape Town Eats. “I love nothing more than connecting people and sharing everything amazing I have found. The difference is that I am now sharing with a local audience, versus for years I have been sharing with the overseas market!” Cape Town Eats www.capetowneats.com






“We love getting our vegetable box straight from the farm. You can seriously taste the difference,”says Pamela. Farmer Nicole Precoudis grows veggies on her apple farm in Elgin, Terra Madre, and also “makes the world’s best coldpressed apple juice.” Pamela recommends including a pack or two of spanakopita when you place your order. www.terramadre.co.za

“The best cupcakes in town!” says Pamela. Handmade by Arran in Oranjezicht, the cupcakes are priced at R150 for 6 and come in an incredibly tempting array of flavours – Gianduja, Tiramisu, Dulce de Leche and Triple Chocolate are just some of the options. @halfbakedcapetown

“Wonderful vegan dishes made by artist Tamlyn,” says Pamela, who highly recommends her vegetarian lasagne. Tamlyn delivers her soups and bakes frozen to the CBD and Atlantic Seaboard, so stock up on goodies to keep in the freezer. @plethoravegan





“One of my best meals of the year was from Randles & Son,” says Pamela. Chef Wesley, previously of Shortmarket Club, changes his menu weekly and cooks up a home delivery meal for two people for R440 - incredible value for a top chef. “The meal we had was wholesome, real food, and as if it was cooked by a friend for a dinner party. But not just any friend, a really gifted foodie friend.” @randlesandson



Previously chef at Kitima and Macau, Chef Kuan has “rocked the lockdown!” with his range of convenience Asian cuisine, including delicious pantry and freezer staples. He started his delivery business from scratch and now has three people working for him full time. “He is doing everything from meals to feast selections to cooking boxes through to coming to your kitchen to cook for you,” says Pamela. @asiandelibykuan



The “next level baklava” from Square Tomato, made with cashews and a syrup infused with cardamom and star anise, is handmade in Montagu and delivered weekly to Cape Town. “It arrives frozen, so buy a few packs – you are going to be addicted after the first pack and will be very grateful to find this in the freezer again!” www.capetowneats. com/listing/cape-townsquare-tomato/



Chef Tamsyn Wells, who used to work at 15 on Orange before pivoting during the lockdown, delivers meal kits and a daily lunch dish (gourmet mac and cheese with crispy bacon, anyone?) straight to your door. The meal kits include Potsticker for two and Mexican Taco Fude kits, and you can access cooking instructions online to guide you through the final cooking process. @fudeforever

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