It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking all Cape Town Suburbs are the same. A school or two, a few supermarkets and houses here and there. That seems like the standard formula. But then you get Observatory, which is weird to say the least. Something about Obz attracts bohemians and non-conformists of every type. No one can say why, but as soon as you get there, you’re free to let your freak flag fly.
Which is why you shouldn’t be surprised when you pass 12 Nuttal Street and see a large sign emblazoned with the name A Touch of Madness. If any restaurant were to epitomize Obz, this would be it. The building is a beautiful refurbished house fitted with a fireplace and bookshelves to give it that comfortable at home feeling. And, on sunnier days they have two outside areas, one in a back courtyard illuminated by fairy lights, and the other right out front with the perfect seating for a bit of people watching.
And then there’s the food. Anything you can imagine yourself craving they have. Burgers, ribs, taco’s, nachos, falafel even bunny chow; they serve it all. In true Obz fashion, A Touch of Madness said forget gimmicks, let’s serve everything we think is good. And boy is it good. After trying those tacos with a side salad and hand cut fries, you’ll never want to eat anything else. And don’t get me started on the burgers, they’re so juicy you’ll ask for a straw.
If the food didn’t get you excited then the drinks will. A Touch of Madness has one of the best happy hour specials you can find. Between 5 and 6pm a full pint is half priced, a glass of wine is R20 and an entire bottle of wine R60. They practically give it away. And, for a special treat for those cold Wednesdays, try their gluhwein. For only R20 a glass, this German delight will have your belly warmed and your taste buds excited.
But, as if all of this didn’t already convince you just wait for Saturday. If you visit then you might not even recognize it as a restaurant. Every Saturday at A Touch of Madness is Touch Down Saturday. Local DJ’s are invited and people from all over Obz come through to meet, catch up and enjoy great vibes. The whole restaurant transforms into this vibrant house party and all the colours of Obz shine bright late into the night.
Honestly, A Touch of Madness is hard to describe. The menu, the drinks, the decor, it’s all a mishmash of things that shouldn’t go together but do so well. It’s just like Obz, it attracts oddballs and eccentrics, Bohemians and non-conformists. If you’re the kind of person who wears suspenders and a belt maybe this isn’t for you. But, if every now and again you can’t resist the urge to be a little bit weird, you’ll find a place at A Touch of Madness.
When and where:
Tuesday to Saturday 12-10pm