Ambience★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Service★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Food★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This is comfort food, made with love and presented beautifully. The menu changes regularly at this popular Durban brunch spot, depending on what’s fresh. Meals are written up on the large chalkboard wall. It’s community collaboration at its best, so expect local ingredients to feature in some hearty breakfast options, open sandwiches, salads and a number of larger, but light meals, including the baked delights of The Glenwood Bakery next door.
Your visit might yield a fat slab of toasted brioche, served with rosewater-poached peaches, cheese curd and pistachios. It might be your last meal on earth request. Breakfast is served all day, with the ‘Not so Benedict’ (poached eggs, bacon, Hollandaise and capers on potato-rosemary bread) being a big drawcard, but don’t discount simpler items like Bircher muesli, which is soaked overnight with grated apple, or the deliciously savoury soft polenta served with smoked tomato concasse, creamed spinach and mushroom, poached eggs, pancetta and parmesan. Another appealing option is the wilted greens with sautéed mushrooms, ginger yoghurt, poached eggs, soya-chilli butter and toasted sesame seeds.
Light meals include a home-made soup and quiche of the day, plus salads and open sandwiches. A brown and wild rice with dukkah and herbs, served with roasted pumpkin, onion, beetroot, cinnamon orange, feta and molasses is sensational!
A selection of cakes is available for those with a sweet tooth, or choose from their decadent milkshake and freezo menu; the choc-orange and brownie versions are hard to beat.
Parc offers one of Durban’s most delicious coffees and often it’ll be served in a glass with a knitted beanie character around it. The café is licensed, and offers a small selection of red, white and rosé wines, craft beers and an inspired variety of made-to-order shakes. Think lemon cheesecake milkshake...
Parc is a cosy space, which spills out on to the pavement, with laid-back acoustic music on weekends. It’s a vibey regular hangout for locals.
Friendly and welcoming; the staff members know the regulars by name.
Get there mid-morning on weekends to reserve your spot and take in the chilled music for the afternoon.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.
The wall is the menu, and it’s an expression of owner and chef Brett Gentle’s affinity for simple, casual food prepared lovingly and well. Salads, open sandwiches, quiches, soups and all day breakfasts are available. Parc was put on the map by their intriguingly named Eggs Not-so-Benedict, poached eggs on bacon or fried mushrooms, smothered in a lemon hollandaise and resting on a slice of Glenwood Bakery’s much loved rosemary and potato bread. But the rest of the menu holds its own.
The chicken liver paté is a soft, moussey legend amongst regulars. The Parc Caesar salad is just a slight twist on the traditional, with iceberg lettuce, watercress, caramelised red onion, crispy pancetta and a soft, gloriously oozing poached egg on top. The shavings of parmesan and garlic croutons seal the flavour deal.
There are vegan options available, such as the lentil and sugar bean patty burger, served with a vegan mayo and a sprinkle of Americana, with the “beet and carrot slaw” side.
The breads come from the bakery next door, and where possible, ingredients are sourced from the area or provincially, including local cheeses and cured meats.
Local and national craft beers are available, as well as wine. The list, like the food, is on the wall. Coffees are excellent, but the real treat here are the milkshakes. Served simply, without ceremony or literal over the top garnish, they are made without synthetic syrup flavourings, using real ingredients with a bit of a twist. Free’s Shake is Parc’s avocado milkshake. Named after the customer who requested it, this is an avocado and vanilla combination, made with a double shot of rooibos red espresso and blended with a home-made chocolate brownie. Further varieties of unusual and inspired mixes are on offer, all made with locally produced ice cream.
As you frequent more often, you become familiar to staff, who are friendly and attentive. Things can be a little slow when it gets busy, so relax with a coffee or beer while you wait.
It’s a creative, vibrant space, full of regulars and locals, who pop in for a bite and conversation. The air is filled with the buzz of chatter, the hum of coffee machines and blenders and the clatter of food prep, lending it an energetic studio-style feel.
Keep an eye out for the wine pairing evenings. They happen every two or three months or so, and the food is modern and imaginative, earning Parc and Brett a solid reputation with both local diners and chefs.
Eat Out reviewers dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Click here to read our editorial policy.