Arcade’s raising the bar in Cape Town

Private Property South Africa
Charis Le Riche

Marco Picone and Niki Bjorn Reschke took over a rundown building on the corner of Bree and Pepper streets and turned it into a trendy late-night eatery

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Owners Marco Picone (part of family business Soft Coffee Holdings, which owns the Cappello and Hard Rock Cafe brands in South Africa) and Niki Bjorn Reschke (chef and menu developer for Nonna Lina, Col’Cacchio and Nu Health Food Cafe) came together wanting to bring the Mother City a new eatery that would offer not only great atmosphere, but also superb cuisine for those late-night munchies.

“We noticed how Cape Town wasn’t looking for another club or restaurant, but something that was a little of both,” says Marco. And so Arcade Resto Bar was born: a vibey late-night bar that serves great food too.

The overall theme has to be minimalism – from decor that has a sparse, industrial coolness to it with stunning copper light fittings (and the only real pop of colour being the neon pink light that reads “Youth has no age”); to the menu which is all about simple food made with quality ingredients and great care.

“When planning the menu, I thought about what I want in food and what I think the customer deserves. I always came back to the same thing: uncomplicated, seasonal, fresh produce that isn’t overly complicated,” says Niki.

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This philosophy shines through on the menu which features organic beef burgers with great flavour combinations (like the Brooklyn with fior di latte mozzarella, streaky bacon and avocado) as well as unique salads, authentic pizzas and cafe-style fare like the beef and chicken prego rolls and more. We got to try out the seared beef which serves two. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the beef melted in my mouth. It wasn’t anything overly complicated, it was just great food.

Marco and Niki are hands-on when it comes to running Arcade, so you’ll probably find one of them at the restaurant offering patrons tequilas and generally having a good time. “It’s that personal touch that makes a difference, “says Niki.

“We definitely want to open up four to five more eateries like this over the next two to three years and just keep them cool and niche, simple and amazing,” says Marco.

Experience it for yourself:
Arcade Resto Bar
060 861 0511

This article originally appeared in Neighbourhood, Sunday Times.

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