The last time I had a meal at La Perla was in the 70’s. In those days it was a popular venue for Business Lunches and La Perla was always one of our favourites. I was therefore excited to find out how this famous Italian Restaurant had aged over the past 40 years.
We arrived for lunch on a sunny Cape Town day and were seated on the patio overlooking theSeapoint pool. The first impression was inviting. The elegant tables with white table cloths were mostly full for a mid week lunch hour and waiters were buzzing around keeping their guests well served with food and wine.
Looking inside the restaurant, which was quieter, I immediately noticed the very distinctive carved wooden arm chairs I remembered from before and which looked no worse for wear after all these years. The traditional looking interior seemed to also have changed little with lots of wood and paintings on most of the walls.
Sparkling wine by the glass was a welcome start together with a basket of fresh baked chunky bread whist we looked over La Perla’s extensive menu. Prices are not cheap for locals but the quality of the food more than justifies this. I started with the Beef Carpaccio which came in four different styles. I chose the Carpaccio with Mustard, Mayonnaise and Capers. It was beautifully presented and tasted outstanding. My partner had the Roast Tomato, Parmesan and Pine Nut Salad and was very happy with her choice.
As an Italian Restaurant, La Perla has an excellent choice of Seafood so I selected the Seafood Platter. It was magnificently presented and comprised of Kingklip, Prawns, Grilled Calamari and Mussels. The Kingklip was delicate and full of flavour and the Prawns succulent. It was also served with both rice and chips. My partner was very happy with her choice of Tuna, two generous chunks with hand cut chips on the side.One thing at La Perla, you are never kept waiting and the food came quickly which is important for those who do not have the whole afternoon for lunch.
We managed to fit in dessert knowing how Italian Restaurants excel in this. My partner had the Tiramisu but my Nougat Semifreddo was definitely the better choice. With four generous slices of a nougat, ice cream based dessert served with chocolate, it looked and tasted totally decadent.
La Perla has an extensive menu and its large range of pastas is well priced. For those wanting seafood, there are numerous options, and for meat lovers, some excellent choices, including some tempting veal dishes served in three different ways. You can safely take a large party of friends to La Perla and there will definitely be more than enough choices to cater for every taste.