The Griffin offers a seasonal and well-thought out menu showcasing modern pub food with international flair and flavour combinations. The menu has trendy twists on it yet the food is welcoming and easy to identify with. There is a weekly Sunday lunch offering which is prepared “just how mom used to make it” and it inspires memories of family and childhood in a warm kitchen.
The starters and snacks are easy-going and simple. Try the duck spring rolls served with plum sauce or the spicy chicken, green papaya and coconut salad for a flavor explosion.
Main courses are sublime. The portion sizes are large and the meals are very well cooked. The slow roast pork belly with potato and onion bake is decadent, rich and delicious. For a lighter meal, try the Moroccan flat bread topped with pulled lamb, mint and spring onions, big dollops of baba ganoush and tzatziki. The gourmet burger is a signature dish at the establishment and you can sink your teeth into a pure beef patty topped with cheese and caramelised onions.
For the pub goers, or for those who enjoy sharing, there is a good selection of sharing boards, mezze and nibbles. There is also a children’s menu offered at lunch time.
The drinks menu has something for everyone on offer – a superb selection of craft beers, beer on tap and local brews. The establishment also has a good selection of local wines, spirits and cocktails available, making it the perfect spot for a social drink of any kind.
The service lets the establishment and experience down. The wait staff are disorganised and there is a severe lack of them. Managers need to take ownership of the floor and of the experience to make it a more slick and organised ship.
The ambience is perfect for a casual, gastro pub environment. There is good music all day and a friendly, easy-going vibe. Patrons are at The Griffin to have a good time and the eclectic mix of diners and bar-goers adds a fun energy to the experience. The Griffin has an outside seating area for a more casual experience as well as the main indoor dining area for a warmer, more intimate experience.
The Griffin is extremely well-known for its Sunday lunches but be warned, one has to book. The establishment also has a variety of fun evenings, including quiz nights which draw a large crowd and can be enjoyed by anyone who is interested in a great night out.
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As their menu says, this is the perfect spot to meet, eat, drink and be merry. Expect simple yet innovative and trendy gastro pub style food that changes with the season. To start, try the delicately cooked chilli salt squid with kimchi mayonnaise and sesame bok choy. Another very appetising starter is the beetroot and orange salad with goat's cheese, pine nuts, baby spinach and wild rocket. Alternatively, try the buttermilk-fried chicken on apple and celery slaw with Sriracha sour cream. The slow-cooked beef shin with wholegrain mustard mash, creamed cabbage and caramelised red onion is perfect for a cold winter's day. The flavour combinations are spot on.
Then there’s their famous burger, a gourmet bacon & cheese version with caramelised onion, tsatziki, tomato relish and chips. You may also want to try the interesting Asian-style burger, consisting of a pork patty served with sweet chilli, ginger aioli and slaw. It's packed with flavour and makes for a refreshingly different meal. The sides are interesting – this is the kind of spot where you’ll find delights like truffled cauliflower cheese. Desserts are also promising – keep an eye out for that dulce de leche panna cotta, or the pear, almond and Amaretto tart with spiced custard, and if you’re looking for something more familiar, opt for the malva pudding with apricot and pecan nuts. There’s also a Sunday roast that rotates between an offering of free-range chicken, leg of lamb, rib or beef or pork belly.
They offer a significant amount of craft beers, ciders and boutique wines. The craft beer selection includes local and imported beers such as the Wells Bombardier and Jack Black etc. There are also spirits and cocktails.
Service is relaxed but quick, friendly and welcoming. The waiters are well informed about the menu.
During lunch or the week it's very tranquil, but come weekends and especially Friday nights, it's full of vibe and buzz. The décor is quite rustic – brick walls and wooden tables and chairs lend a ‘dude food’ look and feel.
There is a kids’ menu available for lunch.
Unfortunately, I was met with a major anticlimax after having waited for more than a month to get a reservation at the Griffin on a Friday night.
We had to wait more than 15 minutes to get our table (even though we had a reservation) as the patron who was seated there refused to leave.
They had just launched a new menu but the option that I had requested was 'not available'. I then ordered the steak which was over cooked despite me having asked for it to be medium to well done.
It was so loud that we could not even hear each other and I will definitely not be going back there any time soon.
You can tell these guys are passionate about food and beer. Delicious goats cheese parfait to start followed by a very yummy salmon fishcake. True pub food in a beautiful pub...more please.
Great atmosphere, better service. Duck spring rolls to die for and ginger beer that's beer. My fave hangout!
Just had the best roast pork in my life! You guys rock.
Comfortably the best pub in Johannesburg. Had a Sunday roast last week. Spectacular!
Best selection of beers in Jozi by far! Pity the food is not up to scratch.
I am British and was so excited to see a real pub...proper fish and chips! Happiness away from home.
Superb evening last night. Professional service. The food was sublime! I had the best fishcake I have ever eaten! I think this place is a gem, taking advantage of an all too often tired and limited Johannesburg eatery. Keep up the good work.
Monumental failure posing as a gastro-pub, this fake facsimile fails at every level. Student dive dressed up as a wannabe venue, creates an insult to the Jolly Roger. Food is sad, limp and tasteless; menus are guillotined to pieces; large tracts of drinks menu are unavailable, verging on fiction (have never been available), and God forbid if you order a drink at the bar, It requires that you surrender car keys or first-born child as security pledge before you receive a drink - student dive? You tell me. Great location wasted on amateurs - hopefully next-round buyer makes a better go of it.
My husband and I had lunch at the Griffin on Wednesday. The service was absolutely outstanding but unfortunately the food was a bit hit 'n miss. My crab linguine was fantastic but my husband's mussels were horribly overcooked, chewy and tough. The manager offered us a dessert on the house and we ordered their baked chocolate pudding which really could have been left to cook longer as it was essentially just hot chocolate sauce in a ramekin.