Venues

Cnr Café & Bistro (Craighall Park)

Cnr Café & Bistro (Craighall Park)
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Cost
R90 avg main meal
Ambience
Comfy & casual, Contemporary cool
Food
Bistro fare, Café fare, Mediterranean
Payment
Amex, Mastercard, Visa

Critic's review

Thando Ndabezitha

Food
The menu has a wide-ranging variety of café type dishes with some interesting twists, as made evident, for example, by one of their daily special dishes of smoked salmon on seed loaf lathered with avocado and finished with a soft poached egg, capers, hollandaise sauce and orange zest. The citrusy flavour adds a pleasant dimension to the salmon-and-poached egg combination and comes highly recommended. The breakfast menu overall is quite generous, with numerous options for those wanting a traditional meal. Their sandwiches also stand out with combinations that are anything but standard. Think: grilled halloumi, Asian salad or toasted pumpkin seed sarmie, or prosciutto, tomato, rocket and padano shavings sarmie – no normal grilled tomato and cheese or chicken and mayo here, which is why customers can also expect to pay a little bit more than they would at any other average corner café. Breakfast dish prices range from R49 (for a small breakfast – an egg, bacon, tomato and toast) to R98 (hollandaise – two poached eggs on toasted seed loaf with baby spinach, basil, roasted cocktail tomatoes, prosciutto/smoked salmon, and hollandaise sauce). Lunch is served from noon and includes a mixed range of burger-type dishes, steaks, seafood, salads and pizzas with additional choices of wheat-free and banting bases. Traditional desserts such as baked cheese cake, lemon meringues and brownies.

Drinks
There are plenty of non-alcoholic drinks, hot and cold, with the standard options of caffeine-based drinks and well as fresh juices and smoothies, among others. There are also draughts on tap, some local craft beers (Jozi Blonde and White Dog Saison, among others from Agar’s Brewery), and a variety of wines, which are also sold by the glass.

Service
The staff is warm and efficient in seating customers. The service between being seated and getting a menu is a bit slow. You might have to ask for a menu, or get the attention of a waiter swiftly passing by with eyes averted away from you to ask for a menu. The food is prepared and delivered quite promptly though – and this is obviously subject to the kind of meal you are ordering, but, again, the waiters do not seem very attentive as they only approach the table to take the order, to place cutlery on the table, and to serve the meal. While dining, there is no one checking to find out how the meal is. Again, prepare to hail down the waiters who seem intent on avoiding eye contact with guests if you require anything while eating.

Ambience
The venue is large, open and warm. The staff make every effort to seat guest comfortably without placing them on top of each other, which is a big plus for a place as busy as this. There is a friendly vibe, with interesting art on the walls and an overall attractive and modern feel, with shelves bearing pot plants as well as jars and tins of preserved fruit.

And...
This is a great place to take family with young ones out for breakfast or lunch a cold winter day as it is warm and child-friendly.

(September 2016)

Eat Out reviewers dine unannounced and pay their own way. Read our full editorial policy here.

  • Ambience
  • Service
  • Food
  • Thulisa Martins

    Food
    This is a good old-school local favourite serving familiar dishes like pizzas, pastas, burgers and gourmet hot dogs. Starters include tempura gherkins served with caramelised onion and chive aioli, as well as grilled halloumi, wrapped in prosciutto and served with sweet chilli and rocket. The squid in a light crisp batter is to be recommended; accompanied by a soy sauce with just a hint of chilli, it is just what’s needed to kick of a laid back meal. Moving on to mains: the pizza with chicken, coriander and chilli on a light, crisp base really hits the spot. After spotting a pasta machine halfway through the meal, I decide to have pasta on my next visit – particularly the version adorned with prawns, chorizo, red onion, lime leaf, tomato, chilli, garlic, white wine and feta. There are also some good options for vegetarians, including a salad with butternut, basil and blue cheese, and a sandwich of grilled halloumi, Asian salad and toasted pumpkin seeds, with a choice of rye, seed or French loaf. Desserts include an ever so creamy classic crème brûlée and some old time favourites like brownies with vanilla ice cream, baked cheesecake and lemon meringue.

    Drinks
    A good, basic wine selection that includes mainly local wines. The prices are quite reasonable, averaging at around R38 by the glass and R110 per bottle.

    Service
    Warm and friendly – everyone is made to feel welcome. It’s the kind of reception and service that makes you want to stick around.

    Ambiance
    The feeling is of a local, laid back bistro. An open plan kitchen allows you to peek at the food being prepared. Aside from the spacious interior, there is an outside seating area as well.

    And…
    The restaurant is child friendly.

  • Leila Saffarian

    What started out as a small corner café quickly picked up a cult following amongst locals. Fast forward eight years later, Corner Café had no other choice but to add ‘bistro’ to their name. Still as loved by their local fan base as at the start of their culinary journey, the menu is packed with well-rounded variety that keeps the masses well fed.

    Food
    Salads, pizza, pasta, steak rolls and hearty breakfasts are all on offer, with a host of daily specials thrown into the mix. Portion sizes, it should be noted, are generous. It can make it hard to decide, especially if you live in fear of the dreaded restaurant syndrome of order envy.

    The salad with seared scallops, pancetta, caramelised pear, and the chicken salad with watercress and baby spinach make eating your greens easy. If salad isn’t quite up your alley, opt for something a bit meatier: the ‘rump & roll’ is sure to satisfy. Beautifully grilled rump with flavours of lemon, garlic, Dijon mustard and parsley, served on a Portuguese roll with some chips on the side, make for a delicious and well-priced meal.

    On the pasta front, there are a host of choices to tempt the appetite, including a delectable-sounding version with prawns, chorizo, red onion, white wine, cream and feta.

    Drinks 
    A fair selection of spirits and wine is on offer, as well as soft drinks and fresh fruit juices. A few craft beers also make an appearance; opt for a cold Jack Black draught or something interesting from Darling Brewery.

    Service
    The service is attentive, knowledgeable and friendly – everything you’d expect from your local corner café. Not to mention smiles all round, which adds to the charming atmosphere.

    Ambience
    The bistro is located in a large space, with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. It’s an uncluttered venue with an almost industrial, New-York-loft-type feel. The open kitchen means that diners get a glimpse of their meals being prepared.

    And…
    The pizza oven is decorated in gorgeous white and blue mosaic work; it’s an eye-catching feature that’s as decorative as it is functional.

    (August 2014)

  • A great industrial-looking space that maintains a warm and welcoming feel. Their menu is very inclusive and they boast an impressive wine list. Visit on a week night or embark on a lazy weekend brunch. Highlight: leek and onion soup with parmesan on the side. (EO mag 2014)
  • Food
    To shock one’s taste buds into overdrive, nothing beats the superbly tasty chilli sauce with bread offered upon arrival at Corner Café and Bistro. Apart from sandwiches served all day (salami, brie and olive pesto, and prosciutto, tomato, rocket with Padano shavings sounded good), other options include pasta, pizza and burgers for hungrier patrons. For breakfast, smoked salmon, cottage cheese and avocado on a bagel with lettuce and tomato hit the right notes, while the soup of the day (leek and onion soup) served with crusty bread and Parmesan on the side is delicious.

    Wine
    The small wine selection includes Blouvlei Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot blend, Terra del Capo Sangiovese and Ken Forrester Petit Chenin. Good coffee is a given.

    Service
    At lunchtime one could feel a little inundated by the many waiters on duty, but this is a large restaurant and at busy times all hands are on deck. The waiters are courteous and convey a sense of fun: perfect for the space that allows good food to be served in a casual setting.

    Ambience
    With visible aircon ducts and other service pipes, concrete floors and large windows, the space could have been inspired by a New York loft. Fortunately, filled with people having a good time and beautiful smells from the kitchen, it manages to be warm and welcoming.

    And...
    With a large open kitchen and pizza oven to one side and walls displaying all sorts of food products on the other, this is the type of neighbourhood restaurant where fabulously long lunches with good friends and good food make for many happy memories. (HF, October 2012)

User reviews

  • I love this place! My favourite neighbourhood cafe with the most delicious food ❤️ My favourite is the prawn and chorizo freshly made pasta - so good! The beer battered salmon is beautiful - you can't go wrong eith anything on this menu. Great selection of wine, cocktails, and food and the service is great!
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  • The past couple of times I have been to the Corner Cafe, I have been very disappointed. When I went there with my boyfriend for an afternoon snack a couple weekends ago, he ordered a hot dog and when it eventually arrived (it took ages to make) it was very underwhelming. It was practically falling apart and was skimp on the chips. The service on that occasion was unsatisfactory as well. We went back there this past Sunday and I ordered the Hollandaise breakfast and my partner ordered a cheese and tomato toasted sandwich. The food took ages to arrive and our waiter was not attentive at all. The bread of the sandwich was burned badly and the cheese within the sandwich was not melted at all. We had to send it back to be toasted again. My Hollandaise breakfast was terrible. The Hollandaise sauce was watery and had no flavour whatsoever. The eggs weren't cooked properly and it was hard to tell if there was any parma ham in the dish because they had given so little. Won't be going back anytime soon.
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  • This is one of the few restaurants in the area where no matter what you ask, it's possible. The food is great, particularly the sweet potato chips with hummus and their burgers are great. The last visit, we needed to be out within the hour and they made sure it happened!
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  • Nice little hidden gem! Awesome food! The burgers are awesome.

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  • Our friends' dinner club chose this neighbourhood restaurant for our latest get-together, and a great choice indeed!
    The smallish dinner specials menu offered mushroom soup, proscuitto and haloumi, and zuccini chips for starters and fillet, calamari and chicken breast (amongst others). All choices were excellent! Good desserts as well...
    We also enjoyed a red blend from the good wine list, reasonably priced.
    The service can be somewhat less attentive at times, although the overall experience was very enjoyable. For such a large (and busy!) venue, the atmosphere is brilliant, not too noisy, even with the live jazz music!
    Will definitely return, soon!

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Menu

Set menu - CNRCAFE - Updated June 2017

Facilities

  • Accepts credit cards
  • Alfresco
  • Child friendly
  • Cocktails
  • Dinner
  • Functions
  • Licensed
  • Lunch
  • Parking
  • Serves food
  • Takeaways
  • Vegetarian
  • Wheelchair
  • WiFi

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