I had a couple of people tell me that Anytime Cafe was pretty good, so I was pleased I had the opportunity to try it the other night. I don’t know if my expectations were set too high, but I wasn’t really that impressed. It’s not expensive and the food was fine, so I wouldn’t avoid eating there but I wasn’t blown away like I thought I would be.
Anytime Cafe is one of the options you have for dinner before a show at the Newspace Theatre. The other option is Boo Radley’s, or you can walk a few metres to The Quarter. It can be a bit hectic just before the show as everyone is under pressure to get their food and eat before the start. The service improved markedly when the theatre patrons went upstairs.
Anytime Cafe is modern and light with wooden floors and white furniture, more suited to a lunch venue than a dinner venue I think. Quite interesting how the decor is basically the opposite of Boo Radley’s next door.
We ordered a bottle of Guardian Peak Shiraz (R110) to help us focus on the menu. One person opted for a bloody mary instead, which took about 20 minutes. At least the waiter was apologetic and informed us several times that he was chasing it, his proactiveness was appreciated. He also informed us that the veal special wasn’t very good, unusual but useful advice.
We shared two starters, the panzarroti (R22) which is fried dough (kinda like vetkoek) served with napoletana sauce, basil and parmesan. The second starter was the Antipasto platter (R59), which was several types of ham and some salami, quite disappointing in comparison to the equivalent at Portofino.
For mains I had the pasta with mushrooms, sausage and fresh cream (R60). It was fine, but nothing special. I added some chilli to it which made it more interesting. Someone tried the cannelloni (R58), which they said was good. I was also told the sliced veal in a sage white wine and black pepper sauce topped with parma ham and served with pasta (R85), was good as well as the fettuccini bolognese (R56 – the menu says spaghetti but they didn’t have any?)
The winelist is very short, when combined with the specials board, there were maybe ten reds to choose from. As you can see the prices are very reasonable for both food and wine, so Anytime Cafe makes for easy, casual dining. Now that I think about it, probably exactly what you want if you’re going to see a show.
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