First there was The Rock, then came The Gecko, and now there is The Breakfast Room. Located at the far end of the restaurant, down a couple of stairs, this snug area enjoys some of the best sea views offered by this popular establishment perched on a precipice above the New Harbour. The ambience is intimate, friendly and comfy – a place where people are invited to sit back, relax and linger over a leisurely breakfast or brunch.

The Breakfast Room occupies the far end of The Rock and is an intimate and inviting space with plenty of natural light and gorgeous sea views.

Since the opening of Harbour Rock back in December 1997, owner Francois Barnard has continuously updated and expanded his business – over the years the restaurant was enlarged, a new viewing deck was built and the Gecko Bar was added. The menu, too, has undergone several revamps, and an extensive sushi offering was added to ensure a unique and innovative dining experience. 

Now Francois has not only engaged the help of local architect DJ Carr to give the restaurant and the bar a fresh new look (and ‘refreshed’ the menus, courtesy of chef Dean van Huyssteen) but he’s also added breakfast to their extensive offering. For this latest renovation project, he was joined by his talented wife, Carol, who owned the delightful little Java Rock coffee and gift shop in High Street before selling it four years ago and returning to her career as a nursing sister, specialising in wound care.

Owner Francois Barnard with his wife, Carol and chef Dean van Huyssteen.

With valuable input from interior designer Debra Parkington, Carol has managed to turn this previously under-utilised space in the restaurant into another gem. Surrounded by the blue of the ocean on both sides, The Breakfast Room is filled with plants and light pouring in through the large windows, gorgeous fabrics and natural materials such as wood and cane. Even the open kitchen, with its lovely wallpaper and light fittings, is pretty. And in a setting like this, you would be quite right to expect some pretty food, too.

Head chef Dean and pastry chef Nadia Buckley, who both joined Harbour Rock in October, were given free rein to develop the breakfast/brunch menu, which includes delectable cakes and pastries, coffees, teas, juices and smoothies. The menu is small but offers more than enough irresistible options such as Eggs Benedict, Eggs Florentine, French toast with banana and Nutella, smashed avo open sandwich served with a poached egg, rocket and red pepper puree, fish cakes served with a sesame dressing salad, and homemade quiche of the day.

While enjoying your breakfast or brunch you’ll be sorely tempted to do a bit of shopping, too!

In the corner next to the stairs Carol has created a gift shop reminiscent of Java Rock, with carefully sourced items that have all been handmade in the Western Cape. Once you’ve browsed the shelves, you are sure to leave with something special to remember your visit by.

The Breakfast Room at The Rock, New Harbour, Hermanus is open daily from 08:30 – 15:30. It is the ideal venue for breakfast, brunch, coffee and cake, or special events such as a kitchen tea or birthday. Please note that the opening times could change, depending on the Covid-19 regulations. Call 028 312 2920 to book.

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