Something Fishy

Let’s head down to The salty sea dog!

Weekends are for long drives along the coast, sunshine, love and laughter. Oh and of course happy bellies. Driving down the Cape Peninsula away from Cape Town, all roads lead to Simon’s Town, the cute, quaint old colonial naval harbour town. There are whitewashed walls, statues, ice-cream cafes and navy officers in uniform all round.

As a matter of fact, it is so nauseatingly beautiful with the ocean in forefront and mountains in the back, you can’t help but slowly start to die from hunger the moment you enter Simon’s Town, if only eating will let you stay a little longer. When in Rome,  you do as the environment begs for and have your fill with fruits of the ocean. Fish. But not just any fish, beer-battered, deep-fried, crispy-golden, salivatingly-delicious fish. Let’s go eat at the absurdly famous  Salty Sea Dog and dive into the world of  fish ‘n chips!

Looking out on the Simonstown harbour The Salty Sea Dog acts as the perfect restaurant to accommodate long lazy lunches on the sunny verandah as well as take-aways on the harbour wharf looking over a beached submarine and yachts. The historic harbour was erected in 1925 to act as a fish market, and after being closed in 1979, the area became deserted. In 1998, Salty Sea Dog owners, Debbie and Andre revamped the building and opened it up to fish trade again. Today the harbour is host to an array of restaurants and attracts a consistent stream of eager tourists from the world over.

Although Salty Sea Dog serves the good old fashioned hake and snoek, it is their deep-fried kingklip that takes the cake. Kingklip is by nature a soft, plump, juicy little bugger, so soaked in oil and covered with a crisp shell it becomes more like butter than anything else. Another of their specialties is the deep-fried calamari tentacles. Now this isn’t for those who like to see their calamari lying dead in perfect little circles. This looks more like giant sea monsters found in the Odyssey, covered in batter, lying on your plate next to a mountain of slap chips.

Now banters and health nuts, you must be heaving and choking by the deliciously golden-fried picture I’m painting here. Good it should, because you’ll find nothing grilled, except if you’re looking for salad. “WE DON’T TAKE KINDLY TO YOUR KIND HERE.” I joke. they serve grilled calamari tubes. But seriously though, if you’re on a diet, what are you doing in a fish ‘n chips shop anyway?

With the slogan of “If you don’t eat here, we’ll both starve” Salty Sea Dog offers giant portions at great prices. It’s as though they really do care whether you’ll starve or not. With an average meal going costing about R50-R60, the petrol money on the drive to Simonstown will actually cost you more. Open Monday-Sunday the Salty Sea Dog is not one to be missed for locals and tourists alike. Over weekends it tends to become raucously busy, but the staff are always happy to find one more seat.  After all, you don’t want to starve now, do you?

Want to cook tasty fish at home? Try this recipe for chargrilled fish!

Read more about Simon’s Town

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