We’ve rounded up Jozi’s best cakes so you can dig straight into a slice or order them whole for an event (or just for chipping away at home, we don’t judge).
Patissier to the chefs, Martin Ferreira is as well-known for his V8 cake as he is for those world-famous éclairs. This chef is a stickler for using the best ingredients. The V8 consists of eight luscious vanilla layers: vanilla cream, dacquoise, macaron, brittle, vanilla gateau, vanilla jelly, vanilla brûlée and vanilla mirror (R600). There is also a chocolate version. Ferreira’s glossy chocolate entremets cost R280 and his signature cheesecake with each slice individually decorated is priced at R350. For every cake there is a gluten-free option. (The Broadacres Superspar has also just begun stocking a special range of gluten-free Café Patisse cakes.) There are also cakes of the day to be had by the slice (R40) with coffee. Soon he’ll be moving Café Patisse to a rather grand locale. Watch this space.
Most moms know about Cakeboys. It’s the place to get unbelievably cute cakes for two-year-olds or splendiferous fantasy cakes for ten-year-olds. These cakes are absolutely eye-stopping but also absolutely yummy to eat. They’re priced from R390 to R650.
Chateau Gateaux offers unique fresh-to-frozen cakes from Durban and is available at various outlets throughout South Africa. The Illovo branch is where you get to sit and taste generous slices of the defrosted cakes over coffee or tea. Their secret is using only natural flavours, fine chocolate, real farm cream, real fruit and no preservatives or artificial pre-mixes. The Mozart is the signature cake, consisting of layers of Japonaise (soft meringue with nuts) and hazelnut cream, topped with fine chocolate shavings. The whole huge cake can be had to keep in the freezer at R363 and a luscious slice of this beauty is R48, eaten in the sweet little patisserie. All their factory-sealed products carry the SANHA emblem and are halaal.
Franco Lambiase’s wedding cakes cause enchanted wonder. The South African baker, born of Italian parents, understands the classics. The Italian sponge cake comes lightly layered with vanilla and chocolate crèmes patisserie and liqueur, while the Naked cake is much fresher, with flowers as decoration instead of glitz. They are heavenly in every way. His highly edible cakes are designed with the type of wedding in mind: they can come either gooey and rich or as fresher tea-time style cakes. They’re all designed to be thoroughly enjoyed by guests on the day. Prices range from R780 to well into the thousands. (It’s worth it.)
Moemas has moved from the Parktown North shop to their kitchen in Emmarentia, which only takes orders, but it’s just as busy as it always was. Patisserie chef Danielle Postma worked under Yotam Ottolenghi in London at Baker & Spice. The cake she and Ottolenghi call their Celebration Cake is made with the recipe they still share. It’s made with excellent-quality chocolate, butter and eggs, and features a surprise chocolate cream within. It’s the right amount of sweet, powerfully flavourful and utterly delicious. Danielle says people always order a bigger one the next time round. (The smallest size costs R750.) Of the three regularly made gluten-free cakes, Moemas’ scrumptious coconut-and-almond cake is the fervent favourite.
You might think that the chefs at Patachou cannot possibly make anything more glorious than their annual galettes des rois cakes at the Epiphany time of year, but look around next time you’re in-store and you’re sure to see people eating cake. The cakes change from time to time and are priced between R40 and R50 for a generous slice.
The Tart Boutique Catering is soon moving to a gorgeous spot in a trendy corner of Johannesburg, so keep an eye on their social media. Nadine, Bongani and Dhaivern will be making to order just as many, if not more, of their Lindt chocolate cake – a dense, moist chocolate sponge spread with ganache and festooned with seasonal berries. As is the case with their five-spice carrot cake, their pecan cake, and the white chocolate, orange and raspberry cheesecakes. All are specially freshly baked and the cost of the whole cakes range between R350 and R585. There are beautiful carrot, chocolate and pistachio gluten-free cakes available. A completely vegan cake is also being developed.