Lots to love at Love on Long

Easy-going corner café keeps things simple

Long Street means a lot of different things to people. For some it’s where they work (on both sides of the law), for others it’s a place to party and for others still it’s a place, that weeks before, was a picture on a postcard. But no matter what your agenda is on the iconic street, chances are you just may find yourself a tad hungry.

Love on Long is a new corner café and bar in the 210 On Long mall, right across the road from Adult World. There’s a joke in their somewhere but we’re talking food so it just wouldn’t be appropriate.

Sitting across the table from me is the owner of Love and Long, Michelle Wilson, who after some years in the corporate world decided enough was enough. We’re sitting on a table that spills out onto the bustling Long Street curb. A sweet cloud of smoke wafts over from the table in front of us where a guy is puffing away on a hookah.

The hookah pipes (shisha or hubbly bubbly) are a big hit. “We have loads of flavours and it creates a real sense of community,” Michelle explains. “ Often people will get up and go over to another table be like, ‘hey man what flavour are you smoking’?” One could even pair the tobacco with a cocktail – how does a mint shisha with a mojito sound?

It’s chilled, relaxed and a great place to go for a quick coffee, bite to eat or cocktail. “It’s my absolute favourite to see people chuck their shoes off and re-arrange the pillows on the couch,” says Michelle.  “I just love to watch people get comfy and enjoy themselves.”

From bacon and eggs to midnight tequilas

“We’ve started staying open until late, sometimes as late as 2am. We have such a mixed crowd and people love spilling off into the corridor and street whilst jamming to drum ‘n bass and dubstep. People come off the street and sample the different shisha flavours and often end up staying joining tables of complete strangers. When the night is merry I’ll walk around and hand out free shots.”

The food is awesome and simple, the way it should be, and always with two ideas at heart; quality food and great value for money. Whether it’s an English breakfast to start the day or a late night burger to help you sober up, the kitchen is open from 7am till 6pm.

The burgers are massive, the chicken wraps are jam-packed with goodness and vegetarians are catered for too. Try one of their popular giant muffins washed down with a perfect cappuccino.

Sitting at one the street side tables I can’t help but feel immersed in Cape Town’s rich and diverse offerings. A man offers me ‘just stolen sunglasses’ – his words not mine – wave after wave of tourists pass by, hipsters stroll by gauntly, delivery guys fly around with their wares, and I feel at home.

No pretence, just value for money and a good time, any time.

By Julian Sendin

Love on Long Cafe and Bar
210 on Long | Long Street | Cape Town | +27(0)21 424 6696

Opening times: Monday to Thursday 7am - 10pm | Friday 7am - till late | Saturday 8:30am till late | Sundays closed


COMING IN JUNE: Discover authentic Turkish food, khave, shisha and more at EatStanbul in Kloof Street.


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