The 15 top restaurants in South Africa – which are also among the best in the world

 ·8 Dec 2018

15 South African restaurants have been listed among the top 1,200 in the world – with two ranking in the top 200.

The restaurants were ranked in the 2019 La Liste, which comprises 1,184 top restaurants around the world, all of which scored 80 points or higher in the group’s analysis.

La Liste is inspired by “meta-classifications” used in the academic field (Shanghai ranking), sports (ATP) or other domains (movies, gaming): for each restaurant, the group summarises the evaluations available online or on paper.

The ratings assigned by different guides and publications are harmonised and weighted.

The result is an overall score between 0 and 100, rounded up to a quarter of a point, which determines the restaurant’s place in the world ranking.

A total of 620 sources were used, from the most established ones (Michelin, New York Times, etc) to the most recent ones (Cubapaladar, the first Cuban guide, Chinese “Black Pearl” Guide, etc).

Of the 15 South African restaurants listed in the rankings, only two were ranked within the top 200 – The Test Kitchen in Cape Town, and Restaurant Mosaic at the Orient in Pretoria.

The Test Kitchen has long been ranked as the top restaurant in South Africa, winning the Mercedes Benz Eat Out Awards for a number of years.

Restaurant Mosaic, meanwhile, has had a record-breaking 2018, with the restaurant and its chef, Chantel Dartnell picking up notable awards and accolades.

Mosaic at the Orient was named the Best Fine Dining Restaurant in the country at the 13th annual Restaurant Association of South Africa (RASA) Rosetta Awards. It was also given a RASA Award for innovation, elegance and style of international prestige.

The Tourism & Hospitality Counsel of South Africa meanwhile also named Dartnall as Best Chef for 2018, and Restaurant Mosaic as Best Restaurant for 2018.

On top of its placing on the La Liste rankings for 2019, Mosaic also received the 2019 La Liste Award for the Best Wine List in the world.

Here are the top 15 restaurants in South Africa, which have ranked among the world’s best 1,000.

161 – The Test Kitchen, Cape Town

187 – Mosaic at The Orient, Pretoria


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NATURA NATURANS “Under The Sheets” Langoustine, White Peach, Hibiscus -After a lot of secrecy here is your first glimpse of our brand new Spring Menu #restaurantmosaicatorient #magicmoments #naturanaturans #springmenu #thebestchef #dylan_swart #mymuybuenochefs #four_magazine #greatplates #laliste #chefsalert #eatout #eatoutguide #theartofplating #jhpgourmetguide “One of my earliest memories as a young toddler was my Ouma “Nanna” hanging out her washing, with me sitting in the linen basket amongst her fragrant bed sheets smelling faintly of lavender and her 4711 Eau de Cologne. Thinking back, it seems as if my whole adolescent life was spent in her room dressing up in her evening gowns, trying on her high heel shoes and putting on lipstick in front of the mirror with her favourite string of pearls adorning my small frame, hanging down to my knees. What a thrill it was during my first school holidays to “pitch a make-believe tent” on the carpet in front of her bed, made from her umbrella and one of her bed sheets. We spent many an evening together in “our tent” – with me curled up on her lap listening to the adventures of Mowgli read by torchlight, and recalling her soothing voice and warm embrace that soon put me to sleep, will forever be one of my sweetest memories. This dish, is an ode to all the Oumas out there, who can create magic from a humble item to transport young minds to a world of enchantment…”

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319 – The Restaurant at Waterkloof, Cape Town

354 – Greenhouse, Cape Town


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Braised lamb shoulder, globe artichoke, nasturtium. #springprovenance #greenhousect #capetown

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410 – La Colombe, Cape Town

434 – Chef’s Warehouse, Cape Town

736 – Terroir, Stellenbosch

737 – DW-Eleven 13, Johannesburg

910 – The Pot Luck Club, Cape Town

947 – Comphors, Somerset West

959 – Indochine at Delaire Graaf Estate, Stellenbosch

978 – Jordan, Stellenbosch


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Baby chicken, butter ponzu roasted eryngi, miso cauliflower, ginger and garlic roasted bok choy

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1078 – Overture at Hidden Valley, Stellenbosch

1084 – The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Francaise, Franschhoek


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Saturday nights at TTR #allthesnacks #uptownpark

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1146 – Foliage, Franschhoek

Read: These are the 10 best restaurants in South Africa – including a new number one

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