For the past few months, we’ve been the proud supporters of the ‘Let’s Paint Red Cross Hospital’ initiative, founded by Greg Bertish of The Little Optimist. We’ve shown our support by providing pizzas for all the amazing volunteers of this great cause.

In April 2016, Greg Bertish sailed an 8-foot dinghy around the Cape of Storms. His 200 kilometre journey matched the 200 days he spent in hospital fighting life-threatening heart infections. It was the beginning of what has become a lifestyle of giving back.

Through his organisation, the Little Optimist, Bertish is putting good energy back into the world one initiative at a time. One such initiative aimed to repaint the iconic Red Cross Children’s Hospital.

Before work began, the old hospital entrance was tired, dirty and peeling – a disheartening sight for the thousands of sick children who enter there on a yearly basis. The front of the hospital had not been repainted in 10 to 15 years due to lack of funding. The money made available by the city is being spent on the life-saving equipment used in the hospital and its outer appearance has simply not been a priority.


“Often this hospital is the last bastion of hope for very sick kids and their parents. I needed to help it make a positive, optimistic and inspiring first impression. I needed to put smiles on their faces and into their hearts before they walked through the door. I know that this positivity and optimism helps in the whole healing process,” said Greg about the initiative.

The new red and white façade of the building has turned the building into a warm, welcoming place. For the past three months, vertically suspended painters and children painting patterns and sayings on the walls, have become a common sight.

How did it all start? Bertish put a post on social media in October last year asking for assistance with raising funds and painting the hospital. It went viral. Bertish then rallied the media, corporates and the people of Cape Town to get involved. That’s when PRIMI jumped in to do its part.

At the end of every hardworking day, PRIMI treated all the volunteers to delicious pizzas that were well received by a group of people who gave their time and resources so freely to pay it forward.

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“To watch this initiative take shape, to see how sponsors got on board to assist and to watch how the building slowly but surely transformed into an inviting space, has been inspiring. To be able to provide the fuel that kept the volunteers going, was nothing short of an honour. The saying ‘work is love made visible,’ is epitomised by initiatives like these. Hats off to everyone who contributed,” said PRIMI Marketing Director Sean Holmes.

Such a simple concept. But such a strong message. Together, we can do anything.

It’s been an honour to do our bit to make a difference. A huge thanks to everyone involved.



Wood-fire brings the taste of Italy

As much loved eatery PRIMI continues its revitalising process across South Africa, George, in the heart of the Garden Route, introduces a flair of authentic Italy as it unveils its new state-of-the-art wood fired pizza oven imported from Italy. In PRIMI’s pursuit of taste, this hub in the heart of the Southern Cape Region can now boast its own little piece of Italy.

Combining traditional wood-fire baking and innovative gas-burner technology, PRIMI’s new pizza oven can reach temperatures of up to 450 degrees Celsius and turn out a perfectly baked pizza within 90 seconds, time after time. But what else does it take to make a delicious PRIMI pizza?


Striving to serve traditional Pizza Napoletana, PRIMI uses high protein flour, filtered water, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, desert rock salt, natural yeast and malt. The 24-hour-matured and hand-stretched pizza base is topped with Italian tomatoes, Fior di Latte and mature mozzarella, and then baked till golden, fragrant and tender-crisp. Wheat and gluten free pizza base crafted with organic ingredients is also available.

Then to compliment recipes that are over 200 years old, PRIMI source pure ingredients, without artificial additives. As such premium 00-grade stoneground flour, bronze-drawn artisan pasta and pure tomato pulp are imported from Italy. Fresh herbs, desert rock salt, toum and olive oil enhance the prime cuts of meat, sustainably farmed salmon trout and vegetables. Even the dipping sauces and PRIMI condiments are freshly made from scratch. Moreover, ozone is used with filtered water to clean and naturally preserve ingredients. So, diners can rest assured that the tasty dishes are also packed with nutrition.




Peak your Performance – Enter Our Instagram Competition

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March is renowned for some of the country’s top cycling events, so we dubbed it Peak Performance month. As the Official Food Sponsor of one of South Africa’s top professional cycling teams, Team BCX (formerly Team Telkom), our job is to ensure our champs are fuelled and ready for victory.

Team BCX comprises of six road riders and two skilled mountain bikers. One of the most gruelling MTB races currently taking place is the unforgiving 8 day Absa Cape Epic where our boys Waylon Woolcock and HB Kruger are busy riding up a serious appetite.

Other high-profile stage races, such as Sani2c, Wines2Whales and the Ashburton Investments National Series are also on the agenda for Team BCX. The racers’ schedules are action-packed, so they need the best quality, slow cooked food in order to keep up.

But you don’t have to be a champion racer to get your Peak Performance on this month. In fact, we’re on a mission to fuel your fitness – getting you off to a great start with the meals our chefs have hand-picked for an energy infused workout.

We’ve combined the best natural ingredients as preferred by Team BCX’s pro riders – delicious protein and power-packed carbs to meet your high performance needs.

Our Peak Performance Meals

Fettine Di Pollo

Chicken scallops topped with marinated tomatoes, roasted olives and fresh rocket. Finished with pecorino and a creamy yoghurt, herb and olive relish.


Rigatoni Calabrese

Chicken sautéed in olive oil, garlic, chilli, cherry tomatoes and roasted olives. Tossed with black pepper and fresh rocket. Finished with gremolata.


Mediterranean Fillet

Flattened fillet steaks topped with marinated tomatoes, roasted olives and fresh rocket. Finished with a creamy yoghurt, herb and olive relish and pecorino.


If you haven’t tried one of them yet, here’s your chance. We’re giving away eight PRIMI vouchers.

How to enter?

Follow us on Instagram and tell us which of the three Peak Performance meals will be fuelling your fitness this month, and you could win a R100 voucher – redeemable at any PRIMI countrywide. Simply comment on the competition post and if your comment makes us smile, we’ll send you a voucher.

Eat like a pro. Get fit like a pro.


New Beachfront Store Now Open in Cape Town


PRIMI’s new beachfront store, Eden-on-the-Bay restaurant has opened its doors. In the process creating 60 new jobs, which the community will agree is a much-needed contribution to the local economy. The brand is no stranger to the area, with its Table View restaurant being a popular destination for many years now. This additional outlet expands PRIMI’s positive impact and involvement in the community. The loyalty shown by the beach front, West Coast community to the Table View store has turned it into a landmark feature. This, coupled with the growing demand for PRIMI’s trademark quality dining, has paved the way for the new store in Eden-on-the-Bay. More exciting developments are in the works with PRIMI’s new menu that has launched nationally in December. 

Jono Dutton, who owns and manages four local Primi restaurants is excited about this launch at Eden-on-the-Bay. True to the brand, Jono is passionate about food and great dining experiences, which has contributed to the success of the restaurants he manages. His passion for excellent service and tasty food fits perfectly with the PRIMI approach of making all food, including sauces from scratch. It is a conscientious modus operandi that guarantees fresh and delicious food. Jono launched his first PRIMI store 16 years ago, and has since become a respected name in the industry. He describes his management style as “power with people, as opposed to power over people.” It is readily apparent in the way that restaurant staff treat customers and each other. It elevates PRIMI dining into the realms of a genuine fine restaurant dining experience for its customers. This certainly isn’t cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all, impersonal fast food dining. For instance, the front-of-house staff are trained to take note of regulars and offer them extra special treatment and benefits. First-time guest or regular diner, one thing’s for certain, the proper PRIMI way means that you will have an excellent time at PRIMI. 

The new Eden-on-the-Bay Beachfront PRIMI brings an incomparable food and service experience to that location. The new restaurant will also feature a unique pizza oven, imported from Italy, that combines traditional wood-fired baking, with cutting edge gas-burner technology. The result is an oven that reaches temperatures of 450 degrees Celsius, to produce great pizzas. It’s a marriage of tradition and modernity, that is the first of it’s kind locally. It’s expected success will lead to similar ovens being installed in the four other local PRIMI’s Jono manages. Jono describes his staff as family, a fact attested to by some staff members being with Primi since he hired them 16 years ago. This close relationship extends both ways, with PRIMI’s investment in staff training and development being rewarded by dedication and loyalty. 

PRIMI provides a truly urban landscape with an eclectic mix of people aspiring towards an innovative culture that enhances each and every individual’s potential, through working together with positive intention and with the very best approach towards dynamic situations. Each shop is allowed the freedom to establish its own visual identity in order to embrace its location and the local community it serves. Consequently, at the Table View and new Eden-on-the-Bay premises beach and sea themes are tastefully interwoven in the décor, combined with phenomenal views of the ocean and Table Mountain. PRIMI restaurants are wellknown for their polished contemporary appearance. This will certainly be a feature at the new premises at Eden-on-the-Bay. In addition, that site will also feature an open galley kitchen built around the state-of-the-art imported pizza oven mentioned above. PRIMI offers a loyalty rewards programme linked to a card that customers can accumulate points on and also become eligible for other exclusive benefits. 

Jono Dutton concludes, “We are looking forward to serving the local community at Eden-on the-Bay in the dedicated manner we have become known for. I believe that every meal is a celebration, it’s our aim to ensure that the dining experience matches the occasion customers are celebrating.”


PRIMI EASTGATE – Revitalised and energetic


PRIMI Eastgate has had an extensive refurbishment, and it is most certainly bang on target, with the latest additions perfectly incorporating the ethos of PRIMI.


With its staff at its heart, and a family feel, this traditional Italian owned chain is making sure that their staff and customers are engaged on all levels. The kitchen has been opened up, with the new innovative wood-fired pizza oven now a focal point in the actual restaurant and the kitchen staff highly visible as they go about their culinary activities.


Brick work and neutral tones, exposed elements such as ducting, stone counter tops and raw wood floors keep the earthy traditional feel that PRIMI Eastgate is renowned for. Overlay the hard materials with an urban feel – brought in through clever use of lighting, wall graffiti, large windows and the renowned orange of PRIMI; this fascinating blend of traditional and urban energy is a bold move, but it works.


Channeling a high-street café feel, PRIMI Eastgate brings their energy out onto the “street” if you will, engaging with passers-by and pulling them into the store, to engage with the unpretentious, contagious energy that they emit.


The creation of different areas and nooks to service various markets is a fascinating concept. Be it breakfast time at the front of the store, grabbing a drink at the bar area, dining with the family outside on the balcony, having a PRIMI EASTGATE Revitalised and energetic business meeting inside (with well-positioned plug points for charging of appliances) or hosting a function in the new upstairs room, with its huge glass windows pulling in the light and the view, one could be forgiven forforgetting that you are in a mall.


The menu, although still featuring the great traditional foods we have come to know and love, now includes a Spuntini section – a dining style the Italians are all very familiar with. A communal eating experience, it’s here that you will find great snack foods. Be it to tide you over until dinner time, a quick bite between meetings, or something to munch on while you are watching the rugby – the array is superb. Order a variety of flavourful dishes, share, dip and mix.




From Italian meatballs served with a creamy relish, to delicious, hand-pressed and stonebaked flatbreads with a variety of fresh sauces and dipping goodies or a fresh carpaccio, you will most certainly not be lacking for something tasty and healthy to enjoy.


Note – try something called a Bloomin Onion. It’s a hand-carved, lotus-shaped onion in a light tempura batter and is possibly the most heavenly thing we have clapped our hands on. Looking for something a bit more filling? dining out Why not try the new extensive range of meat, chicken and fish dishes? The Porcini Steak, a prime cut of rump, perfectly grilled and topped with a tasty creamed garlic and porcini mushroom purée is beyond compare. Those who are banting need not stress, the Mediterranean Fillet is carb free and delicious. The flame-grilled chicken Prego is also a hit and the baked salmon trout parcel served on a bed of fresh spinach with coriander, mint, caramelised lemon, capers and sautéed onions is superb.


Now celebrating his third year at the Eastgate branch, owner Gavin Burnard is as lively and upbeat as his new store, and stops to check in on diners, and crack the odd joke here and there with regular patrons as he does his rounds between the tables. Gavin’s passion and pride in his store are clear to see, and the staff are clearly energised by him. Family first – and this is the pleasant feeling you walk away with after a visit to PRIMI Eastgate. New friends have been made, and we cannot wait to return soon.



A Celebration of Craftmanship

A Celebration of Craftsmaship

PRIMI first shot to fame in 1999 and brought a taste of ‘the old country’ into a vibrant urban context. Set to soon launch a new menu from mid-November, customers can expect nothing short of PRIMI’s punchy flavour, Mediterranean-inspired wholesome food and an unpretentious eating experience.


Made Fresh From Scratch

The brand boldly states that when it comes to food ‘THE FUTURE IS TRADITION’, and as such calls upon recipes dating back over two hundred years with great effort being made to source pure ingredients, without artificial additives. As such premium 00-grade stoneground flour, bronze-drawn artisan pasta and pure tomato pulp are imported from Italy. Fresh herbs, desert rock salt, toum and olive oil enhance the prime cuts of meat, sustainably farmed salmon trout and vegetables. Even the dipping sauces and PRIMI condiments are freshly made from scratch. Moreover, ozone is used with filtered water to clean and naturally preserve ingredients. So diners can rest assured that the tasty dishes are also packed with nutrition.


The Pursuit of Taste

As a PRIMI spokesperson explains “in the pursuit of taste, at PRIMI we always acknowledge ingredients, making them the lead players with our focus on unleashing their true potential. Using the right cooking technique paired with perfect timing, and the simple addition of natural seasoning brings flavours to the forefront. By having keen knowledge of prime ingredients and the traditional art of releasing flavour, we strive to create real taste without artificial distractions.”


Urban Energy

The brand is renowned for its “urban energy”. PRIMI provides a truly urban landscape with an eclectic mix of people aspiring towards an innovative culture that enhances each and every individual’s potential, through working together with positive intention and with the very best approach towards food and dynamic interactions. Each store creates its own visual identity that embraces its local context and the personality of the restaurateur.


The stores tastefully interweave contemporary décor and urban artwork with handcrafted, traditional materials. Keeping with the brands intention of honesty and integrity, the kitchen galleys are visually accessible and form part of the restaurants key features. Launching mid-November, the new Eden On The Bay store not only boasts magnificent sea views, but also a state-of-the-art pizza oven imported from Italy, that combines traditional wood-fired baking with innovative gas-burner technology. The result is an oven that reaches up to 450 degrees Celsius and a perfectly baked pizza.


Striving to serve traditional pizza Napoletana, PRIMI uses high protein flour, filtered water, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, desert rock salt, natural yeast and malt. The 24-hour-matured and hand-stretched pizza base is topped with Italian tomatoes, Fior di Latte and mature mozzarella, and then baked till golden, fragrant and tender-crisp. Wheat and gluten free pizza crafted with organic ingredients is also available.


Cesco Zanasi, co-founder of PRIMI concludes, “The new menu is a celebration of heritage and craftsmanship, and an exploration of flavour, depth and texture. The dishes are fresh, colourful, nutritious and joyous and we hope will inspire a family-style, shared eating experience.”


You Say Tomato, I Say PRIMI Tomato

A flavour burst of ripened Italian tomatoes, cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs.

A flavour burst of ripened Italian tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, fresh oregano, basil & garlic.

There is so much potential in a tomato! And when picked at the right time in the right place, VOILA you discover the foundation of great Italian cooking.

Personal preferences, styles and palates vary as broadly as the plentitude of tomatoes.

So we sent our head chef Philip Alcock off on an adventure to discover and to under strict instructions demonstrated with BIG hand gestures by Cesco Zanasi, PRIMI co-founder, “bring home the tomato that has the potential to make that BOOOOOOM!” flavour burst.

When it comes to tomatoes there are many nuances of flavour profiles; distinguished by the type of tomato, where and how they are grown, when precisely they are picked and under what conditions. Even if you choose tomatoes from the same crop, but picked during different times of the day, the level of sweetness and acidity will vary.

The tomato expedition landed Phil in Palma Campania, about 25km east of Naples with the all-Italian story of tradition, local regions and farming practices that bear the ‘tomatoes’ of respecting nature and the seasons.

In so far as choosing to use non-invasive production processes, only harvesting tomatoes when they are ripe and ready, and keeping ingredients as pure and natural as possible. Furthermore, mixed in with this story is the positive universal message of using recyclable packaging material.

As such Chef enthusiastically tasted many batches of pure tomatoes, with each batch marked with details such as: the date and time picked, the temperature on that day, the level of moisture in the air, the number of growing days and the list of variables goes on.

In the end he found the full-bodied ‘BOOOOOOM’ needed to fulfill all saucy desires.

The chosen batch was rendered into a tomato pulp using advanced processing techniques without citric acid or any preservatives or flavourants added. The tin has a unique protective lining that ensures the tomatoes retain their aroma, flavour, natural colour and nutrition.

With these chosen tomatoes, all that is needed are the culinary essentials of premium desert rock salt and fresh herbs to craft flavour that packs a punch, and forms the base sauce for our PRIMI pizza and many pasta dishes.

Pure tomato pulp with no added preservatives, flavourings or colourants.

Pure tomato pulp with no added preservatives, flavourants or colourants.


Wikipedia National Women's Day image

We are grateful and proud off the 20 000 women that bravely marched on the Union Buildings on the 9th of August 1956.

Imagine how much courage, commitment and faith these ladies had to confront the oppressive apartheid regime; to stand strong and stare down the obscene pass laws.

The pass laws segregated the population even further with passports having to be carried by black African citizens to control and limit their movements. Prior to the 1950s, this discriminating internal passport system was mainly enforced on men and attempts to strike it upon women were met with significant protests.

These brave ladies marched up those Union Building Steps with absolute resolve and dignity. They had planned to kneel in prayer and firmly retain their positions if met by force. After standing silently for 30 minutes they began to sing Wathint’Abafazi Wathinti’imbokodo! (Now you have touched the women, you have struck a rock). Over the years this phrase has been adapted to “you strike a woman, you strike a rock”.

The force of 20 000 women singing this poignant truth must have made those silly men widdle, and reconsider their bullying manhood.

Yes indeed women have an undeniable strength, compassion, dignity and true beauty to make positive change happen.

Give us your BEST word or statement to describe the strength, courage and dignity of women and stand the chance to win one of ten R250 PRIMI vouchers, @primiworld #PRIMIWomensDay

The Feature Photograph is by K.Kendall, distributed under a CC-By 2.0 license. 


Pristine Lochs For Our Healthy Fish

Real Butter Croissant with Salmon Trout

Real Butter Croissant with Salmon Trout

Every delicious bite and sip means hours of sourcing and testing to give our customers the PRIMI eating experience.

We choose every ingredient wisely, and buy from suppliers who farm responsibly and who have full traceability.

Three Streams have an interesting story as they complete the whole value chain from fish egg to your plate at PRIMI. The salmon trout are hatched on the Three Streams farm in Franschhoek, then they make their journey to the Lesotho Highlands where they are raised in the pristine waters of the Katse dam. Once the trout are fully grown they return to Three Streams for processing and the Royale Highlands Trout are served at PRIMI restaurants.

Did you know that there is a Scottish-looking loch in Lesotho?

The Katse Fish Farm is a little gem, mimicking a Scottish loch, in the middle of Africa. It’s the first commercial aquaculture project in the Mountain Kingdom of Lesotho, dedicated to developing the natural and human resources of the area sustainably and ethically.

The stocking densities are kept low to ensure excellent welfare for the fish, in fact, there is over 90% water to fish in the pens!

Did you know that trout is one of the most efficient converters of food in the world?

The Ha Lejone community in Lesotho receive a royalty on every kilogram of fish sold. The local community also benefits from employment opportunities, supply contracts and donations to schools and hospitals.

Local Western Cape trout and the Lesotho Trout (Royale Highlands Trout) are SASSI green listed, giving customers the thumbs up to fully enjoy PRIMI meals:

Salmone Pasta– slivers of smoked salmon trout in a mild curry, white wine, garlic, cream and tomato sauce.

Salmon Trout Salad– smoked salmon trout topped with olive oil, lemon juice and capers. Served with a cherry tomato, cucumber, red onion and mixed leaf salad and half an avocado.

Baked Salmon – oven baked on a bed of fresh spinach, capers & grilled lemon.

Add salmon trout to just about any of your favourite dishes, as seen above- especially good with the real butter PRIMI croissants.

Salmone Pasta

Salmone Pasta

Don’t just take our word for it, check out this sensational video of Royale Highland Trout and Three Streams: 

How To See-through Smooth Imitators And Taste Artisanal Pasta

Artisanal Spaghetti

Yes we know that this word artisanal is trending and now used to market just about anything and everything, but what exactly does this mean when it comes to pasta?

How can you discern when pasta truly is authentic and artisanal?

Here are a few tips for how you can see, smell, feel and taste for yourselves when pasta is premium:

  • Look at the surface texture and colour of the pasta. Artisanal pasta will have a roughened, speckled surface and be a paler shade of yellow than the shiny generic version.

The traditional craft pushes pasta dough through naturally roughened, bronze die-cuts (stamps) to make various pasta shapes and a porous surface. This porous surface enables pasta to cook evenly and hug the sauce, so that you can enjoy the perfect ‘al dente’ bite and lap up all the sauce. To speed up the process, cheaper variants use synthetic Teflon with plastic, which extrudes smooth shiny pasta.

Bronze Die-Cuts by Liguori Pasta

  • When cooking your pasta, if the water retains a cloudy residue then your pasta has a high level of starch and is low in protein; showing that its not artisanal pasta!

Premium pasta is made from durum wheat and natural spring water. The pasta dough is kneaded using traditional techniques to help preserve its protein structure and is dried at a lower temperature for a longer period of time to maintain its natural pale-yellow colour, and the fragrance and flavour of the grain. It contains less starch and more protein than a generic variant.

  • With artisanal pasta you won’t even need to add a sauce!

Truly well crafted pasta will have a flavour, aroma and texture of its own, and can be enjoyed without you even having to add a sauce.

Pasta-making turns into true art form when the natural flavour, colour and fragrance of the grain is preserved without the use of any additives or preservatives. The careful selection of flavourful grains grown on sun-kissed Italian hills with natural spring water, as with our PRIMI pasta, makes the world of difference.

  • Warning: made in Italy, does not necessarily mean that it is truly from Italy!

To meet mass production, large brands source wheat from various countries, whereas the artisanal craftsmen select specific grains within their region. PRIMI pasta was awarded the name Pasta di Gragnano IGP (Protected Geographical Indication) stamps of approval for being genuine- grown and made solely in Italy.

 PRIMI pasta is made in Gragnano, Italy’s Bay of Naples, by master pasta makers and from recipes dating back to 1795. Only the best selection of durum wheat grown in Italian regions, and natural spring water from the local valley is used. The flavour, aroma, nutrition and texture is also thanks to a unique protein-preserving kneading technique, slow-drying processes and traditional bronze dies to render a roughened surface to hug our sauce.

Wheat and Gluten Free artisanal pasta is also available.

PRIMI Carbonara