Local hot spot Lou Lou’s has been a go-to establishment in Cape Town’s De Waterkant for several decades. Steyn du Toit from the Pink Tongue chats to new owner James Truter about the next incarnation of this glitzy venue.
PT: Congrats on taking over Lou Lou’s! When and how did you first encounter the venue and what was it that made you first fall in love with Lou Lou’s?
JT: I live locally in the area having moved here two years ago, so I have known Lou Lou’s for a while. But when I heard it was up for sale I thought I must jump at it. It was really love at first sight for me, the venue just looks stunning and the food is so delicious. Who wouldn’t want to be a part of it?
PT: To someone who has never been there before, how would you describe the venue and your vision for it?
JT: It is a high-end cocktail bar. Think New York or London with industrial lighting, a lovely stretching wooden bar, a cosy fireplace and an amazing deck area on the Cape Quarter square. My vision is to make this a place for locals and visitors alike, a place people call home, their local drinking hole.
PT: Cape Town of course has no shortage of fantastic districts and spots for both tourists and locals, however, what is it about De Waterkant specifically that draws so many people?
JT: De Waterkant is just a gorgeous village. The architecture, colours, vibe and people make it special. It is a colourful neighbourhood and extremely popular with the LGBTQI+ community. It is safe and is in a great spot close to all that Cape Town has to offer.
PT: What impact do you believe the re-launched Lou Lou’s will have on the rest of the district?
JT: I am hoping that people will find another venue they can go to apart from the usual suspects. Our Venue is open till two in the morning, so for those that don’t want to stop (but maybe don’t want to go to a club) should find their way to Lou Lou’s for sure.
PT: When putting together the menu, what were your inspirations? Also, what was it like working with chef Chantelle de Souza?
JT: Our inspirations are definitely a strong Italian basis for our food with lovely rich pasta’s salads, etc. We love people to share so we have an amazing tapas or starters section that people can order and share with their friends. Our food is fresh, our burgers are incredibly tasty and I am a huge fan of Asian food, so we have a few small Asian inspired items on the menu too which are perfect for that hot summer day. Working with Chantelle is an absolute pleasure. She is incredibly talented and loves to put her twist on the menu, which excited me when I see, and, of course, taste the delicious results.
JT: I’d love to hear more about your upcoming events? For instance, what is a Pink Dinner? And what prizes are up for grabs during Fabulous Bingo Friday?
We have Fabulous Pink Bingo this coming Friday (6 December). It is just a fun night with Lilly Slaptsilli who’ll be drawing the balls for Bingo, and making everyone laugh I am sure. DJ Michael Dickinson of Dynamic Sound will be on hand to make sure the night gets even more festive.
We have a delicious set menu with Canape’s and a further two courses, plus a Pongracz welcome drink on arrival. The prizes range from Rose Gold Memi necklaces, Lush Hampers, a Pongracz hamper, plus many more.
We also have our weekly Bubbly Thursdays, which make for a great date night for those who love bubbles, Three glasses from R99, so it’s a bargain. During Fridays we are currently doing G&T (which is our take on gin and tequila), and have half price specials on both. Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday we have a DJ playing from nine until midnight.
PT: Lastly, for those who’ve not made plans for New Year’s eve yet, what will be happening at Lou Lou’s?
JT: NYE is our next big event, Night Under the Stars, which will be done Lou Lou’s style. We have a glorious piazza-type square in the Cape Quarter, and we will be enjoying it fully as we dance and drink towards 2020 in. We have various ticket options, from just a party with a glass of Pongracz, to a delicious 3 course dinner and bottle of Pongracz (including a booth option for up to 6 people). DJ Dino Live will be leading us into the party alongside other guest performers.