In what is really the only decent way to celebrate getting to the end of a long day on campus, sundowners yesterday were taken in style on the Camps Bay “strip”. The view was good, as were the free nuts. Yet, for all the young, rich and beautiful that make up this party of the city, I found it pretty soulless. (Did I say “yet”? Cancel that. It’s of course self-evident: young + rich + beautiful = soulless).
So, after finishing cocktails (mine, a pretty good concoction of gin, blue curacao and fresh lime juice) and eating our fill of the nuts, we went looking for ponce with a little more soul.
Enter Beluga, situated in the so-called “Foundry”, a faux kind of warehouse situation in the city built around a pretty nice courtyard, and full of design shops (a bath shop, a tile shop, a Scandinavian chair shop, and so on). When we walked into the courtyard where all the Belugans were congretated around their half-price cocktails and sushi, I got the feeling everyone was looking at us. Maybe they thought we were movie stars. Maybe the blue curacao was shining through my medium black number and making me glow (blue?). Maybe I was imagining it all.
The cocktails there were good, perhaps better, and a whole lot cheaper. This half-price thing they have going (every day, on selected drinks and sushi) certainly draws crowds, because there they all were, not the young, rich and beautiful, but the young-ish, getting rich and powerful. We decided they were probably in the advertising industry, all these cocktail-drinking-sushi-eaters who may or may not have thought we were movie stars.
I couldn’t help wondering what someone from Japan would think of this picture. It’s pretty damn remarkable how the sushi-craze has crazed the world. Don’t get me wrong; I have nothing against sushi. There is a time and place for good sushi. It was just suddenly absurd to see all these well-ordered people with their little trays of well-ordered pieces of fish and rice.
Maybe it was because Beluga isn’t a Japanese restaurant. Beluga, after all, does refer to either a whale, caviar, or “white” in Russian. So what?, you may ask. This is the global village, after all. If I can do bank transactions with real Danish money in Denmark from my computer in Cape Town, then why should I be surprised at a bunch of South African brand people eating sushi at a steakhouse with a Russian name?
There is, I grant, no good reason. And I can’t comment on the sushi either; we ended up, instead, at a local fishery where the Patronne who personally runs through the entire menu with every single table looked and sounded exactly as she did last time I was there, six years ago.
The fish was fresh, though. And delicious too.
Now for a weekend in the country. The soundtrack: Michael Jackson’s Bad. Yes he is.