Restaurant laws wage increase South Africa
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  • From award-winning fine dining establishments to local eateries, the Covid-19 pandemic has decimated South Africa’s restaurant industry.
  • Some of the top names are gone for good. 
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From award-winning top restaurants to local eateries, the Covid-19 pandemic has ravaged South African establishments.

Lockdown regulations - including curfews, alcohol bans and travel restrictions - have shut down many businesses in the hospitality industry which prior to Covid-19 employed more than 330,000 people.

One industry body estimates that hundreds of restaurants closed in January alone. Among them are independent restaurants, fast food outlets, coffee shops, casual dining establishments, hospital canteens, mobile restaurants and franchise groups.

Those who survived had to find inventive ways of weathering the storm, including rebranding and changing their offerings or shifting to setting up dark kitchens and delivering food to homes. Other restaurants went into hibernation.

Here are some of SA's most popular restaurants that are closed:

December saw two popular restaurants in the V&A Waterfront closing for good. After years in the business, Balducci’s and the award-winning steak and seafood restaurant Belthazar, one of the Waterfront’s oldest tenants, went out of business. .   

Farro’s in Illovo in Johannesburg met a similar fate.

A Sea Point favourite La Mouette is seeking a new owner.

The Kitchen in Cape Town, where former US first lady Michelle Obama famously had lunch in 2013, closed its doors permanently last year. It was started more than a decade ago.

Other casualties include:

Popular Melville restaurant Pablo Eggs Go Bar

The Myoga restaurant, launched in 2007 in the grounds of The Vineyard hotel in Cape Town. 

The Kalk Bay Theatre & Restaurant.

Cape Town CBD based Brownies and Downies, a ground-breaking coffee place which employed the intellectually disabled.

The Restaurant at Waterkloof, Somerset West.

Upper Bloem Resturant, Green Point.

La Bottega, in Woodstock, is also up for sale.

SMAK Delicatessen and Eatery, Cape Town CBD.

SMACK. Closed.

Die Tolhuis Bistro, located on the winding road of Mitchell’s Pass to Ceres.

Die Tolhuis Bistro
Die Tolhuis Bistro. Closed.

Two and Sixpence Tavern, Simon’s Town, after 21 years

Fork, in Franschhoek

Farro, Illovo, closed in November last year.

Calexico, 44 on Stanley in Milpark

The Countess, Melville

La Petite Maison, Melville 

Urbanologi, Fox Street, Johannesburg CBD

33 High Street Restaurant, Kempton Park

Epicure by Chef Coco, Sandton

Coobs and Douglas + Hale, Parktown North

Café 1999 , Berea in Durban, after 21 years. While the premises is shut down, the restaurant has merged with Unity Bar.

Two Olives, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth

Tilting Heads Taco Cafe and Margarita Bar, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth 

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