Leipoldt’s, situated in the heart of Brooklyn, Pretoria, is a small restaurant, coffee house & catering business specialising in traditional South African food. In an age where standardised franchised fare has become the ‘norm’, we are trying to be the exception. All our food is made from the freshest ingredients in our own kitchen – guaranteeing you freshly prepared, wholesome meals made from the best local ingredients.
We could have offered you franchised food in the name of some fictitious Italian mama. We could have fried fish & chips and pretended to be your Greek uncle. We could have been an Irish pub with South African beer. Instead we chose to honour a true South African hero.
Our menu does not read like an extract from Polfyntjies vir die Proe. We don’t claim to be the quintessential South African restaurant. In fact, Leipoldt himself wrote:
What we may call today “Cape Cookery“ is characterised, not by a wholly original, intrinsically national quality, but rather by a subtle combination of various and diverse fashions in cooking. These are adapted and modified from numerous countries, to which the use of certain locally grown ingredients have given a peculiar tinge.
We believe this still applies to today. Food is increasingly internationalised to the extent that a tramazzini and a toasted cheese are equally at home on the menu in South African cafés (and the jury is still out on which is better).
Equally at home next to the camp fire with friends or at the London Ritz with Auguste Escoffier, Leipoldt knew that the same truths applied no matter where one cooks. Use fresh seasonal ingredients, prepare them simply and seek to find combinations of flavours which are naturally harmonious. And whatever you do, don’t take yourself or your food too seriously. Life is not about finding the perfect meal…it’s about looking for it. We try to honour these traditions in our own humble way.