Lonely Planet Writer

Diners can help the chef 'pavement forage' for ingredients at this Cape Town restaurant

In what seems like a novel idea, diners can help chef Jocelyn Myers-Adams ‘pavement forage’ for ingredients for their meal at Camissa Brasserie in Cape Town.

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Nils Hendrik Mueller
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Nils Hendrik Mueller

Jocelyn is executive chef at the South African brasserie at the Table Bay Hotel, and she takes to nearby roadsides, streets, hedges and pavements to source fresh ingredients to use in her dishes.

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie

Guests are welcome to join Jocelyn in her foraging quest, and then they can come back to the kitchen to help her cook what they found around the city.

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie

Jocelyn is often accompanied by foraging expert Charles Standing as she heads out in search of indigenous products growing wildly, and says that an abundance of great ingredients can be found.

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie

She claims that Cape Town is the best city in the world for foraging due to its proximity to the ocean. She picks items there like dune spinach, figs, sea vegetables, seaweed, urchins and limpets for her ingredients.

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image:Camissa Brasserie

She says that her brasserie’s aim is to ensure they make eat things from ingredients that can be found very close to the pavement in South Africa, and calls this process ‘pavement foraging.’

A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie
A Cape Town restaurant allows guests to help the chef forage for meal ingredients. Image: Camissa Brasserie