It’s incredible what you can accidentally trip upon off the beaten sidewalk path. One such easy-to-miss but certainly not easy to forget venue is a traditional Ethiopian spot, Café Abyssinia, just on the corner of Problem Mkhize (Cowey) and Milner Road. It’s effectively in a garage, a cosy space, adorned with an Ethiopian flag and other similar décor, with just a scattered arrangement of tables and chairs. The simplicity of the set-up belies the hidden treasure trove of flavours found in the menu: rich and delicious ‘wot’ (Amharic for stew) of all types, both meaty and vegetarian, all served on a large sharing platter, which is carpeted with the traditional spongey flatbread, injera. The coffee, served in the Eritrean-style jebena, clay pot, paired with popcorn, is a fantastic finisher to any meal.
Take a supermarket tour of the Far East and order a Taiwanese takeaway or sit-down meal at Durban North’s Sun Sun Fresh Market. Past the aisles of Chinese, Japanese and Thai wares, of desiccated jellyfish, crab crisps and daikon radish, you can find the best Chinese and Taiwanese food this side of the Indian Ocean. Dive into a rather large bowl of fragrant Taiwanese beef noodle soup, try the duck, the pineapple pork, the seafood, the chicken. Wash it all down with some milk bubble tea and then pick up some very reasonably priced groceries on your way out.
From groceries to nurseries, there’s a little café at Hingham Nursery just off Rinaldo Road, run by an affable and very hands-on mom-and-daughter team, Loura and Danielle Venter, which feeds a cult following of both people and mongooses. Using herbs from their allotment in the nursery, they throw together comfort cooking magic and palate pleasers that satisfy the belly without breaking the bank. Their crepes are sensational, the coffee is good and there is nothing on their little menu that isn’t made with love and served with Loura’s renowned humour or Danielle’s smile.
Taste for yourself:
031 836 4777 / 084 238 0630
Sun Sun Fresh Market
031 564 4548
031 564 3062
Words & images: Shirley Berko