My brew in Jozi: Where some of Joburg’s top chefs get their caffeine kick

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When the conversation steers, as it often does, to where we should meet for coffee, how often do we settle for a choice between two Vidas? That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with a good franchise; they’re nothing if not consistent. But where’s the fun in having a copied-and-pasted flat white at… Hold on, which one are we at again?

Venture just a little further afield, and you’ll find that a coffee shop needn’t be just a coffee shop. Succumbing to a spell of ’90s nostalgia, it can be the Central Perk (Friends), Café Nervosa (Frasier) or Monk’s Café (Seinfeld ) of your day-to-day – an anchor point, a safe space, a place to make new friends.

In a city awash with coffee shops, it comes as no surprise that Joburg chefs don’t follow the crowd. In fact, their top spots are fast becoming our go-to Jozi coffee haunts.

Freddie Dias from Sejour and Sebule

“Coming from a Portuguese background, I grew up drinking espresso and some milk-based coffees. I now predominantly drink espresso and cappuccino.

“There are two places I love going to for coffee: one is for convenience and nostalgia; the other is for pure coffee pleasure. The first place is a Portuguese bakery called Pastelaria Princesa in Kensington, two blocks from my house. I have fond memories of going there with my late mother. These days I often pop in for breakfast and order a galão – a Portuguese coffee made by adding foamed milk to espresso, similar to a latte or a café au lait. I enjoy this with a pão de leite or a pastel de nata. It always takes me back to my time spent in Portugal.

“The second place is Father Coffee in Rosebank – in my opinion, the best coffee in Joburg. They are fantastic speciality roasters who focus on excellent quality. As an espresso drinker, I like classic, strong, rich, almost chocolatey espresso that’s not bitter or too acidic. Theirs offers a balance of the richness I look for, without being too fruity.”


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Moses Moloi from Gigi 

“I love a simple cappuccino. The best is at Bidon Bistro near the Cradle of Humankind. That’s my go-to place, especially when I’m riding my bike.”


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Jes Doveton from Acid Food & Wine Bar

“My favourite coffee order is a double-shot iced Americano with a splash of full-cream milk, or a double-shot flat white. I get these as a takeaway from Yardbird Deli.


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Ebie du Toit from The Pot Luck Club Johannesburg

“My favourite way to have coffee is strong, dark and as a double shot. Espresso gives me the energy I need to fuel my day. It also suits my personality – full of energy and flavour, just like my cooking! Doubleshot in Dunkeld is my go-to spot – there’s a variety of choices and flavours, and loads of syrups for that extra boost of sugar. Also, they’re located near where I live – convenient!”

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