One thing that we can all agree on is that the city of Johannesburg has a plethora of choice when it comes to the amount of restaurants that are well worth a visit to satisfy the inner foodie. Below you’ll find our list of the best restaurants in Johannesburg for 2019 (which we’ll no doubt update as we roll through the year).
This restaurant is all about using naked flame to create the most amazing dishes. Brainchild of celebrity chef David Higgs, Marble’s menu features a mixture of tastes from all over the World and has one of the most amazing views of the Rosebank skyline you’ll find anywhere. Almost everything is cooked on the special wood burning ovens that had to be flown in especially for use here in Johannesburg and you’ll experience well thought-out dishes, that take your senses into account. They’ve even got a pretty decent dessert menu for anyone that has a bit of a sweet tooth with the whole experience being one of understated luxury. The wine selection is fantastic, but keep in mind that none of the bottles on offer would be found in a bargain bin at your local bottle store.
Mootee Bar (Melville)
This bar has recently undergone a bit of transformation in terms of it’s menu and overall approach. The cocktails on offer are now based on different textures/processes occurring in nature (smooth, burnt etc) and have been expertly crafted by a skilled team of mixologists for your enjoyment. The food menu is slightly limited, so this is more of a spot to have a drink, enjoying a bit of people watching in the middle of Melville. What is on offer in terms of food, has very strong links to South African culture and you shouldn’t be surprised by the inclusion of a bunny chow to the menu. With a rooftop deck and open air alley seating, this spot is well worth a visit (especially in the warmer months).
Nice on 4th (Parkhurst)
Nice is one of the best brunch/breakfast spots in Jozi, neatly tucked away within the bustling suburb of Parkhurst. They have a mix of healthy, home style options with a few choices on the menu that will pretty much ensure you’re never going to reach your goal weight (the egg and bacon bread basket is one delicious example of this). Dessert options come in the form of meringue and a variety of cakes. Active wear on a Saturday morning is prominent and to be honest, that’s perfectly ok.
The Foundry (Parktown North)
Super trendy is how I would begin to describe The Foundry, which has consistently delivered high quality variations of everything from baby back ribs to raviolis and pizza. Each dish has had a discernable level of planning go into it, evident through the complexities in flavour of crowd favourites like the crispy squid heads with harissa aioli and pumpkin ale fritters. The overall experience is completed by the owners encouraging you to share different dishes with your table, making sure that you taste as much of what’s on offer as possible – that and the fact that they have a cracking selection of craft beer, wine and cocktails.
Café del Sol Botanico (Bryanston)
If you’ve got a craving for some proper, traditional Italian chow then this is probably the restaurant you need to visit. Everything on the menu screams Italy, which means that you’re in for a sensory overload when it comes to the complexity of flavour and use of fresh ingredients. Our personal favourites are the pizzas (all of them are amazing, it’s difficult to pick just one), pasta (ravioli) and fillet steak. To end, there is a more than satisfying dessert menu available, however chances are, you’ll be too stuffed to even attempt it.
La Boqueria (Parktown North)
La Boqueria has a menu that is built up from the varying styles of food originating out of South America and the dishes that get us going are some of the best that the countries of Spain, Argentina and Mexico have to offer. The paella is out of this world, with you definitely needing to share it with mates unless you’re planning on grabbing some of it for lunch the next day. The menu is nicely divided up and you’re able to select from starter portions, tapas, main meals and of course insane desserts like the Whoopie Pie ice cream sandwich with marshmellows and a hint of nutella (yes, it is as sweet as you think). Another plus is the great bar and the fact that they encourage sharing and lengthy meals laughing with friends.
Salvation Café (Milpark)
This has always been one of those spots that only those in know tend to frequent – we don’t blame them for not sharing as the food here is some of the best you’ll find in Jozi. Breakfast is the meal of choice here and you can choose from a host of breakfast burritos, Eggs Benedict and fruit/health options to satisfy your early morning food requirements. If you’re there for lunch, try the grass-fed beef bruger with some onion rings and wedges before walking it off in 44 Stanley at all of the surrounding shops.
The Royale (Craighall Park)
Royale is one of the newer kids on the block, but don’t be fooled into thinking it hasn’t hit its stride yet. It’s got a bit of a Cuban theme that translates to a menu that doesn’t make too much fuss in the form of too many choices. The Cuban sandwich is a great choice and if you’re trying to be healthy, order the deep fried cauliflower as a side (although, I’m not sure it’s still as healthy in this form). It’s a great spot to chill with mates and the cocktails that they specialise in are made from the world’s best rum varieties, which is sure to lead to a party.
Urbanologi is one of our favourites, simply because the menu represents what the restaurant is all about – asian fusion. This restaurant is all about the small plate, offering everything from yakatori chicken to venison in a sriracha emulsion – we’ve spent several hours here in the past, methodically working our way through the menu and are happy to report that almost everything on it is delectable. The setting also adds to the overall experience, with you sitting right next to the big Mad Giant brewing vats (yes, you can order craft from the tap there). The only downer is that the dessert menu isn’t as extensive as we’d have liked with only one notable candy floss based dish, but that shouldn’t be enough to stop you from visiting over and over for a completely new experience of their seasonal menu.
Pablo Eggs-Go-Bar (Melville)
Pablo Eggs-Go-Bar, as the name suggests is all about the egg and celebrating what its done for us as individuals that enjoy food. You can grab free range egg based breakfasts and brunches that have notable ties to middle eastern cooking at this city favourite. Flatbreads, shakshuka, deep fried egg and bacon asparagus “soldiers” for dipping into delicious egg yolks are all standard fair at this Melville hotspot. It’s mega trendy and is almost always full. What are you waiting for, get down there this weekend if you can!