Coffee shops of note
For most of us, drinking coffee is an essential part of our daily routine ... but most of the cups we gulp are not particularly memorable. Thankfully, there are creative minds who keep re-inventing coffee, rescuing it from monotony and making the simple act of drinking a cuppa the highlight of the day.
The Bean There Coffee Company, with outlets in Johannesburg (44 Stanley Avenue, Kramerville) and Cape Town (Wale Street), is a relatively new development on the local scene. The company sources its beans from African countries such as Ethiopia, Burundi and Tanzania, roasting them in small batches to produce a product that allows aroma, body, acidity and flavour meet at their optimum. Bean There ascribes to the direct fair trade principle, meaning that Third World producers receive fair payment for their beans, irrespective of market fluctuations, so that producing communities are empowered and sustained.
It’s coffee with a conscience, and with its diverse notes of orange blossom, honey, caramel and vanilla, has the power to transport the taster on a journey into Africa.
In Parkhurst, Johannesburg, you'll find the very pretty 4th Avenue Coffee Roastery, where you can get a great cup of coffee, and delicious sweet things to go with it.
In the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, near Howick on the Curry’s Post road, is a roastery called Terbodore that is delighting tasters. Here you can sit on the lawn under huge pecan-nut trees and sample a house blend, a mocha Java, a decaf and organic blends, as well as an Amarula Cream-flavoured coffee. There’s a good restaurant on site, too. More recently, a 2nd roastery was opened in Franschhoek.
On the North Coast of KwaZulu-Natal, in the Ballito Life Centre, a wonderful combination of coffee bar and gift shop can be found at Cinnamon and Silk. This has to be one of the most charming coffee shops in the country. It has a strong following of regulars who enjoy the baked goods made daily on site, and who may go home with a scented candle, an item of jewellery or a bath product.
In Cape Town there are loads of excellent coffee spots. The Haas Coffee Collective in Cape Town's Bo-Kaap is a great spot for gourmet coffee (think Jamaican Blue Mountain and Yemen mocha matari). Here, you'll also find 'civet coffee', or kopi luwak, said to be the most expensive coffee in the world.
Here you’ll also find ‘civet coffee’, or kopi luwak, said to be the most expensive coffee in the world.
The red and white umbrellas of Vida e Caffè, a Portuguese-style espresso bar, have sprung up in shopping malls around the country. The coffee is good, and those complimentary bars of dark Lindt chocolate are special, along with the 'obrigado' ('thank you') the staff will chorus if you leave a tip.
Category: Food & Wine