This past weekend had plenty of food events occurring. The Market at the Sheds in Pretoria and the Street Food Festival in Joburg in Maboneng, to name a few. But what caught my eye was the Joziburg Lane Street Food Extravangza Pop Up in One Eloff Street, Joburg. It may not be the cleanest area in Joburg but opening up a permanent food market in the area is a fantastic initiative to revitalise Joburg CBD.
Joziburg Lane is difficult to miss as the building is bright yellow. You immediately know where to go. Parking is available in the building so don’t feel shy to drive up the ramp until you find parking on the top level. Interestingly, the food stalls are on the ground floor of a set of apartments. So once you’ve parked, take a walk down the stairs until you can’t go any further. Don’t be like me and start exploring the apartments. It’s easy to get lost.
Once we were back on the staircase, we followed the music till we reached the ground floor. A band was playing, creating the perfect relaxed vibe. And the great part was the it wasn’t too busy.
The best thing to do upon arrival is grabbing a drink and then exploring your eating choices. There’s plenty of drinks on offer: beer brewed in Soweto, wine, cocktails and soft drinks. We grabbed 2 cocktails from Cocktail Bar: the Cosmopolitan Glamour and the Downtown chill. The bartenders are friendly and willing to swap out ingredients to make your drink more palatable. My drink, the Cosmopolitan Glamour, was supposed to have chili vodka. I can’t handle that so the bartender swapped it for vanilla vodka. A welcomed change. If cocktails aren’t your thing, you can grab drinks with more variety from the bar across from the Cocktail Bar. I’d give Gogo’s Ginger Beer a go. It was delicious and had the right amount of spiciness.
With all the food choices it’s tough to pick just one. So here’s a list of the stalls I ate from. The first was The Wicked Waffle, which is Brussel Waffles with various toppings. We went for the Lady in Heaven (strawberries, cream and Belgian chocolate) and the Oreo waffle (Oreo biscuits, vanilla ice-cream, and Belgian chocolate). The waffles were crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. And the toppings on each waffle worked well together. I really enjoyed the waffles. They were tasty and made you feel warm inside.
The second stall was Joburg Deli, which has an array of sandwiches. I tried their Spinach Leave Wrap with Ostrich mince. The perfect meal for Banters, or if you’re trying to cut down on carbs. The wrap was delicious and spicy. It’s hard to believe that such a simple dish could be so yummy.
Next up was Zombie Chefs, which has a food truck and its own store (if you walk left as you exit the food stalls). I wanted to try their biltong salad but it was sold out. So Lee had their Thai Chicken Burger. The burger has the right amount of spiciness. The chicken was cooked and seasoned well and the veggies in the burger, that were marinated in soya sauce, was not overpowering. It was the perfect Asian styled burger.
Alas, I realised there was only so much food I could stuff into my stomach, so we decided to take some food back with us. From Jeff’s Eat, we picked up Mince Samoosas. These were delicious and the mince was marinated well with the perfect amount of spiciness. We also picked up Chili Biltong from Braeside Meat Market. The biltong was fresh and spicy, obviously. It was difficult not to eat all the biltong before we got home. Lastly, we managed to get a Blue Velvet cupcake from Kay’Kreations. I thought I’d have it for dessert but it’s too pretty to eat.
In addition to all the food, there’s also some lifestyle goodies on sale. There’s jewelry on sale just outside where the food is located and skincare products inside. In particular, is Yum-elicious. A temporary stall that sells a variety of hand and body scrubs. If you have a few minutes to spare, have a chat to the owner, who was a chef and has for the past 3 months been making her own body scrubs. They smell delicious and she’s more than happy to explain to you how the scrubs are made. In addition, 10% of sales go the NPO she’s working for.
I’d love to see Joziburg Lane become as big as the Neighbourhood Goods Market in Braamfontein or the Maboneng Precinct. The food stalls have delicious food made from quality ingredients and are priced fairly. I’ve been fortunate to eat at many food establishments, including Michelin star restaurants. So I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of food at Joziburg Lane. And the vibe transports you away. I didn’t feel like I was in the heart of Joburg. I felt safe and the market could have easily been one in a European country. I can’t wait to see the market grow and become an attraction in the CBD.
Joziburg Lane is set to open on the 2 September 2016. Trading hours are:
- Tuesday to Saturday: 10am to 5pm
- Friday: 10am to 10pm
For more queries, here are their contact details:
- Website: http://www.joziburglane.co.za or email@example.com
- Event bookings: firstname.lastname@example.org
- E1 Traders Market, residential space, office space or shop space: 082 444 2540/ email@example.com