A review on the popular Cape St Francis pub by Kirsten Doyle

Kirsten Doyle

Kirsten Doyle

The Rock Lily has been a local haunt of mine since it opened. We used to go there back in the day when it was still called Stix, and I really like the facelift owner Michael Kimmings has given the place, making it bright, airy and comfortable. It is well sheltered from the Cape St Francis winds, and the outside fire is lovely and toasty on those cooler evenings. Although primarily a music venue, it is also the favourite local pub for many St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis residents.

The place itself is lovely and chilled, ideal to pop in for a drink, a bite or to listen to the bands that play there on a regular basis. It also appeals to families, as the pub is non-smoking, with smoking only allowed in part of the outside section. Mike’s love of music shows in the effort he makes to bring bands in from all over the country, and around the world. From Dan Patlansky, and Brian Finch, to Arno Carstens and Boo, there’s music to suit every taste. Many shows are free of charge, although tickets (which are incredibly reasonable) for the more famous bands, need to be booked in advance to avoid disappointment.

The food is plain and simple pub fare. A selection of delicious pizzas – try the ‘Rock Lily’ made up of pulled pork and pepper dews, or the other with gorgonzola and fig – the name escapes me. There is also a range of burgers, fried fish, steak, prego rolls, and delicious chips and onion rings.

All in all, I absolutely love the Rock Lily. The bar and wait staff are friendly and super quick, and Mike is a charming host who is always welcoming, and who’s passion for music clearly shows. If you’re lucky enough, you might even see him doing a number on stage one evening.

RATING: 4.8 / 5

ATMOSPHERE: Warm, comfortable, friendly and fun.

SOUND LEVEL: Conversation level background music on most evenings – although this obviously changes when bands are playing, and becomes louder and more festive.

RECOMMENDED DISHES: The pizzas are definitely worth a try.

DRINKS: A full range of soft drinks, alcoholic beverages and spirits. Coffee, tea and milkshakes are on offer too.

PRICE RANGE: Very reasonable, R50 to R100 for meals, with generous portions.

HOURS: Off season, Tuesday to Saturday 3pm till late. During season, open daily from 12pm to late.

RESERVATIONS: Definitely when a popular act is playing – numbers are limited to prevent crowding.

CREDIT CARDS: All major.

WHAT THE STARS MEAN: Ratings range from zero to five stars and reflect the reviewer’s opinion on the food, ambience and service, with pricing taken into consideration.