When Liam Tomlin opens a new restaurant in Cape Town it’s always exciting and he did just that with his beautiful three-level dining venue The Bailey. Housed in a historic building in the middle of town at 91 Bree Street, I was invited for lunch yesterday to check it out. 

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurantThe Bailey features a ground floor Café, Patisserie, and Champagne bar, the Brasserie on the second floor (where I had lunch), and The Old Bailey Whiskey Bar on the top floor. This opened last Friday and is already bustling. The deep plush couches are designed to languish in as you contemplate which of the 320 whiskeys you will imbibe. Evocative of top-end members’ clubs and bars in New York and London, you will want to dress up a little.

The Bailey Whiskey Bar

Cafe Bailey, Cape Town

This much-anticipated new hot spot is a collaboration between Liam and Jan Tomlin, and the owners of Tintswalo Lodges (Lisa and Warwick Goosen, and Gaye and Ernest Corbett).

Liam moved over the road, took an old building, and renovated it to perfection. He has impeccable taste so everything has been thought through to the tiniest detail. Inspired by some of the grand all-day cafés and restaurants of Europe, The Bailey is for people who appreciate quality.

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

A splendid collection of Liam’s art adorns all the walls and he plans to fill even more of the space with it. Striking works by the late Paul Du Toit, are exhibited in a private dining room that is named in his honour, situated within the Brasserie on the second floor.

Each of the spaces features very comfortable seating with rich jewel-colored fabrics and leather. White linen and monogrammed plates transport you to Paris. The menu in the Brasserie features iconic continental dishes like Beef Bourguignon, Bouillebaise & Chateaubriand.

I couldn’t resist the Jerusalem artichoke risotto, which is always a memorable dish in any of Liam’s restaurants. My main course confit duck leg with parsnip was perfection. We sampled the 36-month cured Iberico Jamon with blanket baby potatoes and melty raclette draped over it. I will dream about this for a while to come. 

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

The menu is unapologetically indulgent so you don’t go if you are on any kind of calorie-restricted diet. Gueridon service takes you back to a time when this was the order of the day in any top hotel restaurant.  It was how I was trained at Hotel School in the nineties and maybe my favourite part of the experience. It’s always a good idea to give a new restaurant a few weeks to settle into a groove and yesterday things were running very smoothly. 

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

Crepe suzette at The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurantThe Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

The Cheese trolley at The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Café Bailey also has a takeaway counter offering freshly made pastries and sandwiches available from 07:00. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner, with reservations taken for High Tea. The café is open for pre- and post-theatre drinks and eats, serving champagne and classic cocktails all day until closing, with last orders at 9pm.

The Bailey, Cape Town, restaurant

Patisserie is one of the outstanding features of the ground floor café at The Bailey. Head Pastry Chef San-Marie Pienaar trained at TCA (The Culinary Academy, now known as The Hurst Campus) and brings five years of experience gained at Singita Lebombo. She also worked in New Zealand, as well as top restaurants in the Cape Winelands that including Waterkloof and Rust en Vrede. All the bread is made in-house.

Cafe Bailey, Cape Town

The French-style Brasserie on the second floor is open for lunch and dinner Monday to Saturday.

Head Chef Jacques Grové (25) takes the reins in his first appointment as Head Chef. A Silwood graduate (2017), the talented young Grové has been promoted from Senior Sous Chef at Chefs Warehouse Tintswalo Atlantic. He has also notched up experience at Chefs Warehouse Beau Constantia, Foxcroft and La Colombe, and worked internationally as a private chef in Saudi Arabia.

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Cheese trolley at The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Cheese trolley at The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

Table side service at The Bailey in Cape Town

Table side service at The Bailey in Cape Town

Table side service at The Bailey in Cape Town

Table side service at The Bailey in Cape Town

The Cheese trolley at The Bailey Brasserie, Cape Town, restaurant

The Bailey – 91 Bree St Cape Town

www.the-bailey.co.za

 Trading hours Monday to Saturday:

  • Café Bailey: 07:00 – 21:00
  • Brasserie Bailey: Lunch 12:00 – 14:30 and dinner 18:00 – 21:00
  • Old Bailey: 15:00 to Late and Saturdays 17:00 to Late
  • Bookings: Dineplan
  • Tel: 021 773 0440
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Facebook: thebaileyonbree
  • IG: thebaileyonbree

 

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2 Comments

  1. I remeber this kind of service, even in a one star hotel, in Durban where I went on holiday, with my parents. I am showing my age here! This looks amazaing and has been added to my list. Two of my absolute favourite things is duck confit and boulabaisse. Photos are sublime.

  2. Sam

    Thanks, Veronica and both those dishes are absolutely outstanding at The Bailey.

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