Chilliplum

Guest Book

 
 

REVIEWS FROM TRIPADVISOR

We live in southern California where we have many great restaurants. News of Chilliplum had made it's way across the globe to us, so we simply had to eat there while visiting Durban. Wow! We are so glad we did. I envy locals who can eat at Chilliplum often. This is no ordinary restaurant. The food is artfully prepared and beautifully plated. The chef knows how to marry different flavors, textures and even colors so each dish is visually appealing, as well as delicious. There is no shortage of great restaurants where we come from and Chilliplum compares highly favorably with any great restaurant in Los Angeles or San Francisco. In fact, the chef at Chilliplum could teach California chefs quite a bit. Apart from the food, service was quick and friendly. The atmosphere is nice casual and ideal for a date, family gathering, or even a business dinner. That said, if I lived nearby, I'd feel comfortable dining at Chilliplum alone too, given the warm, friendly vibe this place has. We love Chilliplum. Three words of advice: Eat. There. Soon!

-FRANK R

Chilliplum is an absolute treat of a restaurant. The food is made with sensitivity, talent, love and care. The meals are delicious and the portions are perfect. It is our favourite restaurant in Hillcrest and surrounds. Chilliplum just took our 'date nights' up a notch :)

-HILTON M

A group of friends and I set off from Johannesburg last Saturday to experience the wonderful vegan food we had heard of being served at the Chilliplum restaurant in Hiilcrest near Durban. And we were not disappointed at all. From the starters right through to the ice cream and avo chocolate mouse for deserts, everything was just top notch. Chef Robert also came chatting with us at our outdoor table on the stoep, and shared his and his wife's passion for vegan food with us - of which only one person was a vegan!

-RUDOLPHODEN

Now a firm favourite of my family, friends and I, Chilliplum is an outstanding restaurant that never fails to surprise. Recently voted the country's top fine-food restaurant for vegans, it now also holds second spot among ALL restaurants (including non-vegan ones) in the region. Though not a large venue, its menu is diverse and of uniformly high quality, and even non-vegans are likely to be astonished at the range and the delicious subtleties of the dishes on offer. For the non-vegans, however, a number of meat and fish dishes are now also offered – though why one would want them when everything else is so excellent is hard to fathom! The place is fully licensed, the staff is friendly, helpful and efficient, hosts Ursula and Robert are fully (and very helpfully) in attendance, and the atmosphere quiet, warm, and welcoming. Outdoor seating is also offered. Unreservedly recommended!

-ZAPKIT

This is my third visit for lunch and I am quite happy to drive 50km to experience great down to earth food prepared with care. Excellent service. Nice size portions and really value for money. A vegan's heaven as well.
This time the vegan lasagne was not available and the other options were really great.

-UMESLALLOO

We decided on something different for our Xmas dinner and different is what we got. Thank you for the lovely dinner. Food was excellent. Good fusion mix.

-STUART M

We popped in for an early lunch one Saturday and the place was still quiet but filled up by the time we left. This seems to be a very popular spot with the locals and I can see why! A largely vegetarian menu offering but some meat options available too so there is something for everyone. We had a veg platter for 2 which was awesome! Super fresh ingredients and a nice variety of veg, dips and bread. It was lovely and light and very tasty. The other meal ordered was they chilli non carne, cute play on words! This was very flavoursome and a nice alternative to the more common meat version. Black beans were used as the substitute and gave it a very rich full texture. Will definitely be back to try out more dishes.

-JEVONJADE

What a great restaurant. Chilliplum you are awesome! From a simple, relaxing atmosphere to thee most amazing menu, my whole family had something delicious to choose from - vegans, vegetarians and meat-eaters and all dishes were absolutely divine. I cannot wait to be back... and try some more fresh, tasty, organic meals! I will definitely be recommending Chilliplum. Thank you!

-Eden Ulrike L

Chilliplum Bistro is the only "true" restaurant in Hillcrest!
a fantastic menu, with fresh produce sourced daily.
Chef Robert Haupt ensure a world-class level of great looking , fantastically delicious food offerings.
A great atmosphere, attention to detail, friendly team,
this is a gem of a restaurant.

- ANDRE S

I love everything about Chilliplum Bistro. Rob (head chef extraordinaire) is a master of his craft. As a vegan, there are always such amazing dishes on offer and we're never bored. The carnivores in the family agree. We've eaten at Chilliplum numerous times, and it's always my first recommendation to clients, family and friends looking for a fine dining experience offering great value for money. This is the best restaurant in KZN and quite possibly the country. Highly recommended!

- TRAVELSAVVYJEN

We came for our anniversary diner, what a lovely evening with fantastic food and excellent wine and service.

- ROB T

I visited Chilliplum again and had the most delicious fresh barracuda with baby potatoes and wilted lemon spinach, this was served with a red pepper and puree.

What a taste sensation! Although one is supposed to have white wine with fish, I preffer red wine. I enjoyed Diemersfontein pinotage with my meal.
Now Chilliplum has a very extensive and beautiful wine list, and they offer all their wines in both 750ml and 250ml.  One of my friend's enjoyed a mussels in rich tomato with penne pasta special, and my other friend also had the barracuda, they both thoroughly enjoyed their meals as well, with the Delheim savignon blanc. One of my friends also enjoyed the retro ice cream roll, which was also a special. Thank you once again Chilliplum for yet another incredible dinning experience. Service is efficient and the ambience is always warm and welcoming. Highly recommended.

- SKYLEE1

Really incredible food and the most amazing variety on the menu!

— Szerdi Nagy

"Absolute dedication to plant-based eating! What an incredible experience with unbelievable food! This place is going to help change many lives :).”

— Dr. Paul Palmer

"There should probably be a sixth star for this establishment for the care and dedication that has gone into every detail that ensures cruelty free cuisine that would make the most hardened carnivore tremble in anticipation of the next mouthful! Wonderful atmosphere, wonderful staff and wonderful cuisine. 
You cannot go wrong here. Strongly recommended. I am already anticipating our next visit.”

— Mark Yelverton

"Went out for fish and chips - ended up at Chilliplum - no fish - vegan food - what a revelation! awesome food, awesome service. will definitely be back - even though i"m a carnivore! Wishing you everything of the best in this venture.

— Robert & Antoinette Ambrose

"Went out for fish and chips - ended up at Chilliplum - no fish - vegan food - what a revelation! awesome food, awesome service. will definitely be back - even though i"m a carnivore! Wishing you everything of the best in this venture.

— Robert & Antoinette Ambrose

"Really, really amazing food and service, look forward to coming back soon.

— Kelly Daniels

"Loved the taste sensation of our meal yesterday. Thank you for delicious food at reasonable prices. Best of all.....no animals were harmed or killed in the making of our meal.

— Jacqueline McGregor

"Just finished a birthday lunch at Chilliplum restaurant in Hillcrest. The décor was attractive, the service attentive and food was delicious. I had the butternut ravioli to start, the chilli no con carne as a main which was fine dining comfort food at its best and the Kahlua "nice" cream for pudding - which was truly yummy. Will definitely be back and can recommend it to all. In summary: service - great; food - wonderful; not having to worry about non-vegan ingredients in my food - priceless.

— Linda Smith

"Stunning yummy butternut ravioli at chilliplum. The rest of the menu as amazing. If you live in he area bring your mates. They will be so impressed. Stunning.

— Penny Logan

"Thank you so much for the amazing dinner on Saturday night! will definitely be back.

— Genevieve Motely

"Loved the food! Could have put 2 extra mushrooms! Had the steak!!! But really delicious! Strawberry cake delicious! Cape Atlantic Merlot, wow wee! Go to this Vegan Restaurant & have a tongue titillating experience!!!!! Didn't miss the MEAT!!!!

— Valerie Jacobsen

"My 2 teenage children and I celebrated my birthday dinner at Chilliplum in Hillcrest. Awesome ambience! Our waitress, Regina, was super funny and attentive. The food was totally amazing. ....I mean, where would you ever taste chocolate mouse made from avo and cocoa +!! A fab experience all round. We will be back very soon. Well done.

— Noelene Visagie

"Just finished lunch at this great venue! I'm a newish Vegan, not fully there yet, but if this amazing meal & Merlot is vegan eating & organic drinking.......count me in!!! Just had the MOST DELICIOUS black bean burger ever with sweet potato fries. Truly one of the best burgers ever, followed by yummy strawberry cake. Great service with damn good food....loved the experience, will definitely be back & recommend to others!

— Natasha Bridger

"Awesome meal we had at Chilliplum today. It was great seeing the passion that Ursula has for her restaurant. Definitely will see us again.

— Tanja Wotroba-Viljoen

"My other half took me to Chilliplum for my birthday today. Being the only vegan amongst all of us, I was happy for them to try a delicious cruelty free meal. Most of us ordered the black bean burger with sweet potato fries. It was so yummy!! I also tried some of Pad Thai which was also delicious. But I must say that the vegan chocolate mousse was the highlight!! So light and fluffy and full of chocolate flavor. All in all it was a great birthday lunch. The only disappoint was that I also wanted to try the roasted cauliflower & spinach dolmades, but was told it was not available because it's not in-season?!?!

— Madeleine Myburgh

"Thanks Ursula and Robert for a lovely evening at Chilliplum. Lovely setting and delicious meals. Being greedy to taste as much as possible I ordered two starters as did my mom which we shared, then I tasted the kids meals too. My favourite was the spicy tomato soup and the chocolate mousse!!!

— Catherine Phillips

"What an absolutely delicious lunch we had today at Chilliplum in Hillcrest. A newly opened, beautiful owner-run & fully plant-based cafe. Ursula & her team make you feel like part of their family the moment you step in the door. We highly recommend this trendy new spot!

— Mokador Coffees RSA

"Excellent food and menu. Definitely near the top of my list

— Willem Vermeulen

"I'm not a vegan but I might be converting soon! Awesome vibes, welcoming and warm staff.... and then the food... fresh and full flavoured menu.... try the soy cappuccino.... just simply superb! 11/10 for this revolutionary little place... we will most definitely be back!

— Tracy Harper

"The entire menu looks scrumptious! Service was warm and friendly. Our food choices were divine. The chocolate mousse was magic thanks so much.

— Rosalind MacDonald

"Passion. This is the overwhelming impression. I'm not vegan or even strictly vegetarian, but I can only respect this project. I had the burger with sweet potato fries followed by a carrot cake if I remember correctly (the wine is ethically made, meaning insects are rescued instead of being crushed, so I also had plenty of that). The cake was made with some sort of egg substitute which to a non-vegan, didn't quite match the 'real thing' but the burger & fries were great. Service: great!. Venue: great! Location: great! (tons of parking, right on main rd)

— Michael Graaf

"My wife and I tried out what Chilliplum had to offer tonight. I have to say we were very impressed and can only see things getting better. Ursula and her husband were extremely nice, welcoming and the staff are all extremely pleasant. They are relatively young as an establishment and are still experimenting with there menu after deciding on what we wanted we were extremely satisfied. We are glad that they have a few new ideas in the pipe line and cannot wait for them to come to fruition. For 100% plant based cuisine we have not had no better apart from in the UK and what we had this evening was almost on a par to that. A very pleasant dining experience from setting to food. I had the Macho Taco's for starters and keeping with the mexican theme had the Mexican Black Bean burger with Sweet potato chips. My wife had the Penang Ravioli and the Vish of the day with Hand cut chips and 4 assorted sauces. We did not get to desert's as our hunger was totally satisfied and did not want to spoil it by forcing sweets down. We look forward to dining at this fine establishment again in the near future. Thank you again for a pleasant dining experience.

— Frank Mccready

"Incredibly tasty food, amazing service, and beautiful decor!! So happy to have all of that in one; and just on our doorstep too! Thank you Chilliplum

— Kerynne McHendry

"Mind blowing flavours, warm hearted staff, wonderful atmosphere. Thanks Chilliplum. 10 stars from my mom and I. We shall return soon, with supporters.

— Claire Wilson

"Awesome staff awesome atmosphere and the most awesome food! Definitely going back for more!

— Dawn Fabbricatti

"What a remarkable and innovative restaurant. 5 star food, atmosphere and service. Can't wait to come back.

— Abigail Hellestoe

"A friend and I had a delicious lunch at Chilliplum in Hillcrest today. Starters were delicious crostini with various toppings and Muchos Tacos. Both dishes were fresh, crunchy, hugely flavoursome and definitely moreish. We both had the Penang Thai curry with squash ravioli infused with lemongrass and ginger - it was beyond delish! This was topped off with a gorgeous piece of carrot cake and a deep, rich delicious cuppocino. My apologies, we gobbled it all up so fast we forgot to take photo's. Jeanna's service was fast, efficient and delivered with a huge smile.Chilliplum is definitely highly recommended. PS taking a sneak peak around at other meals being served definitely created a need to return to try other options on the menu.

— Meryl Johnston

"Tales of a Carnivore:
Hi my name is Neill, and I am addicted to meat. My life has been a hard one, my sister became vegetarian early on, followed by my mother going off red meat slightly later. No problem however, I love cooking...and steak is always easy to find at Lookout, Little Havana or Bar-ba-coa. Then I meet my lovely girlfriend, who is a pescetarian (look it up...it exists). Which brings me to last night's dinner choice (hers of course...I chose Little Havana last week)...Chilliplum. Locked away in the quiet town of Hillcrest (where the temperatures seem Arctic-like)...is this 100% Vegan restaurant. (as of 2017 we now serve meat dishes - added by owner). Now my exposure to vegetables up to now has been limited...I am of course a man...but sometimes we do things in life to make our partners happy wink emoticon Their menu is varied, and you can find vegie-versions of lasagne, steak (mushroom), burger (black bean patty), and even a "vish of the day" (a soya-style dish our waiter tells us). I am still sceptical, but decide on the mushroom steak, done on a bed of 3-root mash...while the pescetarian goes with the burger, which comes with sweet potato fries. You'll see the pics below (excuse us we had started already!), but all in all the food is delicious...the mushroom surprisingly tasty (and it looks just like steak!)...but the real winner was the burger. The fresh sour dough roll accompanies the crispy patty so well...and the girlfriend loved it. It doesn't end there though. I got talked into trying a dessert...which turned out to be an Avo Chocolate Mousse, so good that if I hadnt known it was avocado I wouldn't have been able to tell the difference! Our bill came to about R400, which included a bottle of organic wine...so while not overly cheap, I think you do pay for the comfort of knowing your food is 100% vegan.
Ultimately...my true love in my life will always be meat...but Chilliplum is amazing for all you vegetarians and vegans out there. And even you die-hard meat fans too...give it a try.

— Neill Anthony Wilson

Absolutely superb!!!!.”

 

— Jamie Braun

My wife and I had lunch twice at Chilliplum this week 15th and 16th February 2017.The flavours Rob the head chef comes up with are just amazing. If we were able to spend more time in South Africa we would have eaten there again numerous times

-DON W

This restaurant is a hidden gem! The wide selection of delicious vegan and meat based dishes makes it a vesatile place to visit with all diners, vegan or not. The ambience, service and attention to detail made the dining experience memorable.... but it is the food that pushes it to a totally different level! Unbelievable sushi, curries, nachos and not to forget the sweet treats - we were spoilt for choice. You will never be disappointed...

-SUEMCALPINE

"If you ever want to get lucky with a vegan, take her to Chilliplum in Hillcrest!

In fact that would probably work for vegetarians and most carnivores too. 
It would be a mistake to assume that this venue would only please a vegan as what they have managed to do with their passion for cruelty free food has translated into a fine dining experience of note. As you walk in, the spacey, minimalist cleanliness suggests freshness and health and this is confirmed once seated and you are presented with the menus by the wonderfully friendly hosts Earthula and Robert Haupt. The variety of choice on the menu means I will be going back again and again because it all sounded so tempting. I had preconceived perceptions of another hippie chic restaurant serving raw vegetables, wraps, salads and freshly squeezed juices which, while tasty and animal friendly, have been done before. 
So it was a pleasant surprise to find that their chef has upped the standard a bit (ok a lot!) and was producing meals that would make the most militant of carnivores salivate and start planning their next visit. I chose ravioli filled with a roasted butternut & cashew cheese in a Thai curry sauce made with coconut milk, and my lovely lady chose the tacos filled with spiced black beans and avo with tofu sour cream. I tasted and and can safely say, you could force feed that to a blindfolded man who hates beans and they would beg for more.We both chose the 'mushroom steak' as our mains. Giant black mushrooms grilled with a port jus and served with a three root mash (potato, sweet potato and carrot and damned tasty) and stir-fried vegetables cooked to just the right side of al dente for my taste. That port jus works and I had to restrain myself from licking my plate! I said earlier the menu was diverse. They had the salads, or at least their interesting take on them. Curries, pastas, chilli no con carne and burgers were other dishes I remember from the menu, but there was more, so much more. I think we had too much of their carefully selected wine list as by the time we drank the last drops the staff were leaving and desserts were not going to happen. We will have to go back just for the delicious sounding dessert options. I say carefully selected wine list as each bottle has to be made using methods that ensure no creatures end up being brewed along with your grapes, amongst other criteria. They have a deli and bakery in house too and we have been enjoying the products we walked away with. They are a review on their own so I will leave it at that. Durban is not noted for its vegetarian and vegan options so it is a real pleasure to be able to go out to a classy joint for great food, done the cruelty free way. The vegan aspect is important to me and clearly the hosts are serious about it too, and they have put it together so well to come up with Chilliplum, but it is not their selling point for me, for me that would be the fact that they make wonderfully tasty food. I would recommend them to anyone who enjoys good food..”

— Mark Yelverton

 

"Such an amazing restaurant, I'm so excited we finally have a strict vegan restaurant in KZN. The food is delish, you won't be disappointed as well as a great atmosphere.

— Shannon Welsford

"All around fantastic food! Be sure to try their lasagna, chocolate/avo mousse, cheese sauce... basically everything!

— Lu-Marie Fraser

"Hi Ursula - My vegan family is leaving tomorrow and we all wanted to let you know how DELICIOUS your food has been. That fabulous cake lasted 48 hours before it was demolished and the polenta lasagne as well as the winter love curry have been dissected to be reproduced at home. Everything was gorgeous and I am so grateful to you for delivering such a professional service – instructions, packaging etc. My sister was amazed to be given vegan butter! We will be recommending you to all and sundry and we hope to eat your food again soon.

— Pamela Neethling

"Finally a restaurant that is 100% vegan. Great food, great experience.

— Elton Pelser

"Tried out our new local vegan spot. What a treat. Spoilt for choice - so much so that we had to ask for five more mins to decide a few times!! Well worth a visit even if you are not vegan. Yum!

— Kim Middleton

"I heard of the makings of Chilliplum some time ago, and kept my eye out on their page. Giving them time to settle in, we decided today was a good day to make the long trek up the hill.Now, Chilliplum, as you may or may not know is a 100% vegan restaurant (this is not currently true as we do serve meat dishes now -  added by the owners 2017), meaning there is not a single animal or animal by-product, and with chatting to Earthula Haupt, items are sourced (coffee, wine, ingredients etc) are from suppliers with a cruelty free foot-print. I tried being a veggie, and personally, it was bloody hard. A) finding the food, and b) enjoying it, cause as some people know, some of the veggie alternatives are not the most tasty. Now Chilliplum breaks the mould. It's the gourmet of vegan food. There's none of the soya/legume smushed stuff that you buy in the shops. Their menu is diverse, interesting and flavoursome. They do things with non-meat and non-dairy that you don't realise possible. What did we eat? (I'm copy/pasting from their site, SO much easier).
To share in the middle: penang ravioli - filled with a roasted butternut & cashew cheese in a sea of homemade aromatic thai curry spice & lemongrass infused coconut milk. MIL: winter love coconut curry - roasted seasonal squash. aromatic tai curry paste in a coconut milk served with brown basmati rice. FIL: spinach dolmades - wild rice & a confit of vegetables. rolled in spinach leaves. baked in a chardonnay. oregano & tomato sauce.  He also had the chilli olives and bruschetta on the site.
Wife: polenta lasagna - layered with vegetables. Topped with tofu & served on a lentil ragout in a comforting cheese & napoli sauce. Me: mexican burger - grilled black bean patty in a sour dough bun & a mexican delight of pico di gallo salsa tofu sour cream. slaw & fresh guacamole served with sweet potato fries. Pudding: Chocolate mouse, vanilla sponge cake, berry nice cream, coconut cake.
As I said the flavours, amazing, at no stage with the mains did we feel something lacking. Being a burger lover, that was hands-down one of the tastiest burgers, my only gripe is the bun was a tad dense (but it was expected). The puds, vegan cakes tend to be a bit dense (lack of eggs and milk), BUT they were tasty. 
The mousse, I was, and still am a bit undecided on if I liked it or not tongue emoticon, cocoa and avo is an interesting combo. The nice cream was also very tasty, you couldn't really taste the difference between that and normal ice-cream.
Pricing wise, they are a bit on the pricier side, but I put that down to the fact that the ingredients, etc are all probably not as cheap as your stock standard ones.
All-in-all, it was a very enjoyable lunch, I would def make a plan to go there again, and it was awesome chatting to Ursula and her hubby at the end, and I wish them all the best!.

— Darryl Oliver

"Whether you're a vegan, vegetarian, self-confessed carnivore, someone looking for that unique culinary experience or just someone who appreciates good food - you simply must try Chilliplum. If you're wondering why you haven't heard of them before, it's probably because they are a relatively new establishment. Situated in Hillcrest's Village Richden's Shopping Centre, it was easy to find our way there and there is plentiful, proper parking available. My partner and I visited Chilliplum this weekend for the the first time, and to put into perspective how impressed we were - we ended up going 3 days in a row - that's 2 decadent dinners and a lovely lunch and lots of desert! We're complete addicts now. On arrival, we were greeted by our waitress, Gina - friendly, down-to-earth and smiling from ear to ear. We soon found this endearing hospitality was common amongst all staff at Chilliplum - especially husband and wife team, Ursula and Rob - the amazing, unique, passionate and innovative owners/chefs of Chilliplum. The setting is an interesting mixture of clean-lined sophistication with undertones of earthy, rustic simplicity. And now for the most important part - the food! The menu resonates earthy elegance and interesting innovation, each dish sounded so alluring, we found ourselves almost greedy to try them all. Chilliplum may be a 100% plant-based restaurant, but if you're expecting boring, ordinary veggie meals or just salads - you're going to be surprised! Meat, eggs and dairy are so cleverly and deliciously substituted with plant-based ingredients - it's likely that you won't notice or miss the absence of them. As each meal arrived at our table, it was like having these art pieces revealed to us - so beautiful you almost don't want to touch it and instead just take pictures of it.
Remember that old saying "you are what you eat" - now think about all the factory-line, fast food junk that we put into our bodies on a daily basis - meals that were thoughtlessly prepared - with no consideration for your well-being, your family's well-being, or the well-being of the environment and it's animals. Chilliplum is that refreshing difference of delicious and beautiful food, that's thoughtfully prepared with you and the earth in mind. From their hearty soups, to mains like mushroom steaks , or "vish of the day", to their heavenly chocolate mouse, yummy ice-creams or even their vegan wines - we were just falling in love with dish after dish.
I entitled my review "An experience of 'kinds' " - simply because when I ate at Chilliplum, I felt like this is food that is KIND to you, KIND to your body, KIND to the environment, KIND to animals, KIND to the ingredients and most of all Chilliplum offers a one of a KIND experience. Now go and try it....everyone!.

— Dr. Michelle Naidoo - 10 September 2015

"Finally a restaurant that is 100% vegan. Great food, great experience.

— Elton Pelser

"Visited this restaurant for the first time with my family on Saturday. It was "life-changing" as my sister would say! I had food that I wouldn't have even given a thought to on a regular day and to my surprise grew a love for food id never enjoyed in the past. Beautiful restaurant with great vibe and amazing food! I am by no means a Vegan but this experience has given me a new respect and love for vegetarian and vegan food! The staff are very friendly and attentive! Will defiantly be visiting more and sharing the word!.

— Aimee Claire Todd

"Lovely plant based meals! Great atmosphere.

— Amy Chu

"Finally a real vegan restaurant!

— Jane Galloway Brooks

"We went to see what it was all about and loved the experience. Knowing nothing about Vegan food, we asked the owner to give us 4 starters and 4 mains for us to share and experience. I was amazed what they can do with the Vegan items. Exciting tastes and textures. The concept of a Vegan restaurant in the small catchment area of Hillcrest is very brave. If it was in Ballito, I have no doubt it would thrive. Well worth the visit, even if you are not a Vegan!e.

— PETE W

"My husband and I, both vegans, had the most memorable meal today at this uniquely wholesome restaurant. The food, whether you are vegan or not, is really delicious. The staff are friendly and genuinely happy. A must!

— Ky88MP Westville, South Africa