Myoga: Cape Town
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Chef Mike Bassett's global brand of cooking continues to wow, first at Cape Town's celebrated Ginja and now at Myoga. Located in the Vineyard Hotel and Spa, in the tony suburban area of Newlands, the restaurant is named for an obscure type of Japanese ginger. Also obscure is the menu format, which includes a laundry list of "trios" (soup to nuts, literally) plus a page-long glossary. The scallop trio is a winner, especially the iteration with grilled mango and foie gras, as is the seared salmon with seaweed-laced potato mash and the straightforward aged ribeye. The playful decor has eye-popping orange sofas, metallic gray walls, and black chandeliers dripping with crystals, and one wall has floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning views of Table Mountain. The service is informed and helpful, and the impressively varied wine list has both local cult labels and award-winning estates (prix fixes, $13-$32).
* Hot List 2008