Marianas at Owls Barn’ is one of Cape Town’s most treasured country restaurants – loved by locals, international visitors and critics alike. Overlooking vegetable gardens, fruit trees and the mountains beyond, Marianas offers discerning foodies an unpretentious taste of Cape cuisine, with French and Italian influences. Decorated with mismatching vintage furniture, a light colour palette and minimalist decor, the interior feels like a serene backdrop to its people, food and the aromas of rosemary wafting from the kitchen. Its country cottage setting in the small village of Stanford, adds to its unforgettable charm. Receiving top ratings in the Rossouw food guide, three years in a row, and winner of Eat-Outs ‘Best Country Kitchen‘ award, Marianas is not only an experience in delicious cuisine, but a return to the practice of leisurely lunches. We’ve been enjoying Mariana and Peter Esterhuizen’s wonderful fare since they opened at Owls Barn around nine years ago, often visiting three times a weekend. We’re proud to boast that we’ve sampled almost all their food, from Gruyere souffles and lamb shank, through to their humble chicken pies.

A decade ago, Marianas was an introduction to dining at a restaurant where the ingredients were sourced almost entirely from the garden. The beautiful kitchen garden produces herbs, olives, vegetables…and bulges at the seams with fruit trees such as guava, citrus, quince, fig and pomegranate. Mariana and Peter’s philosophy of sourcing ingredients as close to home as possible, is one of the elements that form part of the restaurant’s kitchen sorcery – also benefiting local dairy farms, fisherman and suppliers in the Overberg region. Mariana and her helpers toil all week to produce food for the restaurant and deli because everything is made from scratch; from handmade pasta, to breads, sauces and pickles – infusing everything with the essence that makes the food so delicious. But above all, there is heart in everything that comes out of the kitchen at Marianas, and you’ll taste it in every morsel.

Marianas at Owls Barn – 12 Du Toit Street, Stanford
Opening hours – Friday to Sunday – arrive from 12 noon.
Telephone: 028 3410 272
Regretfully no children under the age of 10.
No Credit Card facilities
Bookings essential