When I was a kid I had this theory that in my previous life I was a lady on the Titanic and died in the sinking, which would explain my unbelievable love of ships and the ocean. Growing up I realise that’s quite morbid … but I still love anything and everything to do with the ocean – whether that’s diving into it, taking a little cruise, or, as I’ve recently discovered, dining. That is, dining on the Alba Restaurant Boat that’s recently launched at the V&A Waterfront.

Much planning went into the launch of the Alba, and I’ve known about it all year, eagerly anticipating when it would finally happen. So I was beyond ecstatic when the announcement finally came through that the boat was ready to cruise! It’s a beautiful boat – sleek and comfortable, and utterly smooth so you can eat in peace without worry.

The Harbour Cruise

My sister Sabine and I joined the Alba for their lunch cruise. It’s a small menu, but with enough options available to make everyone happy – and they definitely made me very happy! We were welcomed with a glass of Durbanville Hills bubbly, always a winner, and waited for the cruise to begin! Due to safety regulations the Alba restaurant boat does not leave the confines of the Cape Town harbour, but it does travel to the very edges of the harbour border, giving you a lovely view of the shoreline. And of course you’re likely to see tons of seals swimming, playing, and waving along!

Alba Restaurant Boat

The Alba Restaurant Boat

Alba Restaurant Boat

View before the cruise

Alba Restaurant Boat

The dining space

Starters, My Favourite Course Of Every Meal

There were three starters options available. Sabs had the Baked Camembert, served with a berry reduction, figs, honey & spiced toasted walnuts. I went with the Citrus Cured Salmon, with beetroot puree and baby greens. And because they wanted us to try, we also had the Karoo Springbok Carpaccio.

I always love starters. As much as I love hearty meals, I find that so much thought and flavour goes into the bite-size starter portions that makes them my favourite everywhere I go. Maybe that’s why I love tapas too – lots of oomph in a little bite! The starters at (on?) the Alba were wonderful. Sabs and I were thoroughly impressed. Her camembert was glorious and the accompaniments so yum. My salmon was beautiful – thickly-cut, almost like eating gorgeous slices of sashimi – and I loved every bite! The Springbok Carpaccio was delicious too, though if I had to choose I’d go for the former two.

Alba Restaurant Boat starters

Left: Camembert | Right: Citrus Salmon

Alba Restaurant Boat springbok carpaccio

Springbok Carpaccio

The Winning Mains

For mains, Sabine had the Beet Fillet Medallions, served with a mixed berry & roasted bone marrow jus, truffled mashed potato, grilled beetroot & mange-tout. I had the Braised Springbok Shank, slow-roasted in mixed berry juice, and accompanied by potato mash, caramelised onion & red cabbage. A third option was the oven-baked Citrus Seabasss, but we didn’t try this.

Sabine’s Beef Fillet Medallions were divine. I found myself stealing bites from her plate a little too often – but the jus and the truffle mash were just too good to resist. My springbok was amazing as well and I loved every bite. The portions were also enormous (well, for little us), and we couldn’t even finish our plates – but certainly not for lack of trying!!! It’s always nice to head to a restaurant and know they’re not cheating you. Taking a cruise on the Alba doesn’t come at a ‘let’s go for a casual lunch’ price tag, but you get all the courses plus pairing and they’re all massive, so you’re definitely getting your money’s worth!!!!

Alba Restaurant Boat springbok shank

Springbok shank

Alba Restaurant Boat beef

Gorgeous beef medallions

Dessert Heaven

For dessert, the Alba served a platter with Dark Chocolate Mousse and Milk Chocolate Truffles, rolled in pistachio and with a touch of chilli. We were both completely stuffed at this point but chocolate truffles and chocolate mousse can never be said no to. Also, delicious. We finished the experience off with a lovely cappuccino – and by this time we were already heading back to our docking station to end the experience. Time does fly when you’re having fun.

Alba Restaurant Boat dessert

How pretty is this dessert?

Check Out The Alba Restaurant Boat

The Alba Restaurant has a number of cruise and dine experiences available, all at a set price with all courses and pairings included. To view full details of what’s included in the price(s), click here.

  • Brunch: 10:00 | R495 per person (Monday – Sunday)
  • Lunch: 13:00 | R595 per person (Monday – Sunday)
  • Sunset / Afternoon Cocktail: 16:00 | R595 per person (Monday – Friday & Saturday)
  • High Tea: 16:00 | R495 per person (Saturday only)
  • Dinner: 19:00 | R695 per person (Monday – Sunday)

Alba Restaurant Boat

Address: Pierhead, V&A Waterfront

Opening Times: See Above For Cruise Details

Website: www.thealba.co.za

E-mail: bookings@thealba.co.za

Call: +27 65 975 8060

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Written by Benike Palfi

Article Date: October 2018


All information correct at time of publication. We do not accept any liability caused by errors, including, but not limited to, changes in price, menu, opening times, address, or other contact details.