A Different Side to Asoka


Although I had enjoyed a couple (ok, three or four) cocktails at Asoka in the past, I hadn’t the pleasure of sampling its food menu until last week. So when I was invited there for dinner, I was pretty eager to take a bite out of this much-loved night spot.  

Asoka in refurbished Victorian House on Cape Town’s Kloof Street that incorporates effortlessly chic feng shui décor and design. Its centerpiece and logo is an ancient olive tree around which the laid-back central lounge is built. Oregon pine ceilings, copper-clad fireplaces and hand painted murals lit by lanterns and lamps collectively exude Asoka’s comfort and charm.

The sensuality isn’t at all heavy handed, so everything blends together to offer a well-judged mixture of intimacy and buzz. Asoka feels like an ideal place for either after-work refreshments or first dates. You can start off at the bar with couple toots, and if sparks fly, you can always move onto a more secluded spot to enjoy dinner or some light meals to share.

Hibernating Capetonians will be pleased to know that this spot is hot in both winter and summer.  Its comfy couches and fireplaces keep you cozy during the chilly season and there’s also an open-roof courtyard where you can point out Orion’s belt with your toothpick while you dine. And ladies, let me assure you, it’s also a slightly older crowd, so you won’t feel like the mayor of cougar town if you’re a mingling singleton.


On the food front, there is a generous selection of fusion dishes with a variety of meat, fish and poultry choices. We selected dishes off the a la carte menu, which is quite diverse with a strong influence of Asian flavours. 

We tucked into the Crispy DuckThai Green Curry as well as the veggie Spring Rolls to start. The tender duck was accompanied by delicious rosemary potato wedges and flavoured with lemon, coriander and garlic. The curry was fragrant and fresh.

Also, you have to try a couple (or three or four) of those cocktails I was talking about earlier. The Asoka barmen take pride in using only fresh fruit, herbs and juices: they only shake what nature gave them! They also have an extensive range of champagnes, wines and spirits for any occasion.

Tuesday Jazz Nights are probably the most popular evenings at Asoka. Kick back between 9-11pm with some chilled-out beats from The Restless Natives, a group of young Cape Town jazz artists definitely worth seeing.

So if you’re heading up and out of the City, or down the hill from the beach, swing by Asoka for a relaxed dinner, a chilled cocktail, a few jazzy beats or a just a soothing glass of wine after a long day.

To find out more visit: www.asokabar.co.za