Summer is here! Think sunshine, sunscreen, bright coloured sunnies and hot summer nights. Now that lockdown restrictions are easing up, and our vaccination numbers are climbing, people are wanting to venture out to new spots to safely see friends, family and loved ones again.
This is a much-welcomed relief for the restaurant industry, who have been hit hard over the past two years with liquor bans, curfews, and subsequent restaurant closures. We’ve named five flirty restaurants across Jozi, spanning the areas of Parkview, Illovo, Melrose, Fourways, and Bryanston. These restaurants have all been personally reviewed and recommended by it’s a Sher things’ esteemed editor. We can promise you that this list will appeal to a variety of different palate’s, budgets, senses and atmospheres.
Located on Park Corner, in Jan Smuts Avenue, this all-day easy eating café is a must visit, regardless of whether you’ve already been there or not. They use fresh, seasonal ingredients, and their meals are a feast for the senses. The flavour combinations are well balanced, and the meals are a generous portion size. They’re also well priced yippee.I sampled their ‘health egg’ breakfast – it’s a poached egg, with creamy, smashed Avo on two slices of toast, with baby spinach leaves, beet hummus and hard cheese shavings. Finished off with chili flakes, and pickled beets – all for an affordable R59. Add some extra bacon for R14, it’s totally worth it.
I can also highly recommend their passion fruit and macadamia nut smoothie – it’s filling and nutritious. Their premises are insta-worthy, there’s soft music playing throughout the restaurant, and you can work from their premises during the day. Personally, I love the aesthetic. Think bright mustard yellow and peonie pink walls, dried pampas and bunny tales, and a few neon pink signs, even one that reads ‘fancy as f#ck. They make a killer cappuccino; their staff are passionate about what they do and they’re all super friendly. Morning Glory is a warm and welcoming café. They’re a safe space to work from, or enjoy a meal at, and they’re grateful for the business. This is my new monthly breakfast treat spot.
While I only tried their breakfast option, their sister restaurant ‘the peeping tom’ offers lunch and dinner options, so they’re a great spot for every occasion – a date night dinner, or an after-work drink spot. Follow them below, you’ll enjoy reading their sexy food captions on the gram.
Follow them on:
Thunderbird wings may just be Sloane Squares best kept secret. They offer some of the most flavoursome chicken tenders, and unique flavoured chicken wings you’ve ever tasted. Their tenders are well portioned and super tasty, they come with accompanying sauces such as blue-cheese ranch, Smokey BBQ, and hot sauce. Each one more delicious than the next.The wings come as naked wings and I encourage you to try something new like their Smokey barbeque, Africa burn, soy, ginger and sesame seeds, peanut butter and sesame oil, or their salted caramel. There’s literally a unique flavour profile to suit every palate. They’re located at Roast Republic, in Sloane Square. You can dine in store, on the first Thursday of every month, or you can order online from Uber Eats or Mr D. For First Thursdays it costs R250 per person and includes unlimited wings, tenders, and Sangria. Feel free to BYOB. This restaurant is owner operated, and they’re very hands on, and their staff are passionate and knowledgeable about the menu. This is another local establishment that you would love to support. Personally, I prefer the dine in option for this restaurant as opposed to the takeout option.
Follow them on:
- Nikos Monte Casino:
Nikos Monte Casino is the eighth family-owned, Greek establishment of its kind and it’s easy to see why. Their food is full of flavour, it’s located in a safe shopping centre with other things to do while you’re there (such as movies, and ten-pin bowling) and they often have live entertainment such as belly dancing and plate throwing. The Greeks really do know how to party, and they make you feel welcomed to join them, every step of the way.
We popped into their newest branch at Montecasino and really enjoyed ourselves. I don’t know who their mixologist is, but their strawberry daiquiri cocktails are delicious (in fact all their cocktails) – hit the tangy mix of sweet and tarte to a tee. For starters I really enjoyed their dolmade’s, fried halloumi, and spanakopita. Each dish was cooked to perfection, and oh-so-tasty, you’ll be salivating for more.For mains I love their yiro’s – packed to the brim with flavour and starting from R91 they’re a great deal too. I usually can’t finish a whole one and land up taking half home for later. Enjoy a selection of meze and eat them family style, or dip into their meatier options. They offer chicken, meat, and seafood options – to date, everything I’ve tasted has been oh-so-moreish.
And to finish it all off, for dessert I can highly recommend their fresh berry pavlovas, or their chocolate and tahina brownies. I’ve also seen a few great year end function options – so book now to avoid disappointment.
The Prawnery in Illovo has been a fan favourite of mine for several years now. I recently popped into their annual bubble fest, where there were local bottles of ice cold MCC to taste, freshly shucked oysters, salmon sushi, chicken wings and more. It was an absolute delight and I already can’t wait for bubble fest 2022. However, their regular menu is an absolute delight too. Dyl and I were there a few weeks back, we shared a selection of starters and ate them meze style. These included garlic mussels in a white wine sauce, rock shrimp with spicy mayo, prawn dumplings and the Swedish Skagen. Personally, the Skagen and rock shrimp were my absolute favourites although everything was delicious. I can also highly recommend their oysters – they’re so fresh and delicious.
Next up were 6x queen prawns with a gorgeous garlic and parsley sauce and some buttered asparagus. The food was so delicious I couldn’t stop eating. I almost had to be rolled out of there. The oyster shot is so unbelievably delicious I could drink it as a full-sized cocktail. The restaurant is warm and welcoming and the staff well trained and knowledgeable about their offerings.
Old Town Italy Melrose Arch:
Old Town Italy is an absolute treat for anyone who loves Italian food. They have the most delicious pizza’s, pasta’s, meze platters, salads, and more. Pull in with the family and enjoy a few offerings family style. One of my personal favourite dishes is their gnocchi alla gorgonzola – fresh potato gnocchi, with gorgonzola sauce, butternut puree, cranberries, and walnuts – it’s the most delicious treat!
Their sorbet and gelato bar are unbelievably good, with cold- mouth watering treats that seem to be the perfect combo, of sweet and tarte. They’re offerings are sweet enough to satisfy your craving, but they’re tarte enough to leave you feeling satisfied and like you’ve had enough. They’re finished off with maraschino cherries, which are out of this world good.
I love that they offer monthly classes where you can learn how to make pizza / pasta, where you can have a high G&T or where you can enjoy a la dolce vino evening. This is such a great idea for a kitchen tea / date night / girls’ night out date. If you go through within the next few weeks, their Christmas decorations will be up too. This is such a fun family night out.