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Velvet Cake Company and Coffee Shop in Cape Town
Bellville-based cake shop opens a new spot in the CBD’s Loop Street
Okay, I may have cheated a little bit: Velvet Cake Co. is not entirely new. But, in all fairness, the Bellville-born bakery brand has recently opened shop right on our doorstep in the CBD, giving it a ‘fresh-out-the-oven’ feel as far as the city centre is concerned.
And that’s great news for all sweet-toothed folk in the city bowl because this multi-coloured shop boasts some of the most creative sweet treats this town has to offer – thanks to founder and owner Jandri van Zyl.
“I tried to run away from my passion to make cakes,” explains a bubbly Jandri as she ushers me to a seat in the quaint shop. The Velvet Cake brand was baked into life in 2010 after the pastry chef stopped running from her love of all things sweet (she dabbled in photography and fashion prior to its opening). The flagship Velvet Cake shop is based in Bellville, right opposite her café, aptly named Treat. This one-stop sweet shop grew to be so popular that Jandri felt the time was right to bring the multi-coloured cake shop closer to the sea, et voila, the Loop Street version opened its doors in October 2015.
Boasting a mean selection of cakes (there are more than 25 to choose from online), muffins, cupcakes, cake in a cup creations, savoury eats and more, this fun-looking café is what Jandri sums up in one decadent word, “abundance”. Jandri draws inspiration from some of her grandmother’s tried and tested recipes, like the lemon meringue which is also her favourite. She also looks to Pinterest for the ideas to which she then adds her own creativity, and which ensure the Velvet Cake Co. retains its simple yet unique and quirky flair.
Some of the wackiest, yet still tasty, creations have been the milk tart cupcakes, the red wine cakes and zucchini cakes. Classics reimagined, like the red velvet cake with toasted meringue (instead of cream cheese topping), the apple cake and the naked rainbow cake, have been some of their bestsellers. The rainbow cake is also the Velvet Cake Co.’s signature item and is the first sweet treat you’ll see when you walk into the shop as a large, and rather delectable, image of it adorns the wall to the left of the entrance.
While the cakes all look incredibly colourful and enticing, Jandri maintains that her cake philosophy is simple: “Taste is the most important thing, followed by the look and feel of the cake.” She’s considered creating gluten-free and/or banting friendly treats, but decided against it: It’s just best for us to stick to what we do. If you want to cheat your diet, then this is definitely the place to do it.”
Now that I’ve dealt with my guilt, I’m ready to try the cheesecake topped with rainbow cake. It is doubly delectable and very fresh. Freshness is another one of Velvet Cake Co.’s philosophies: every cake is made with the freshest ingredients and within the 24 hours it will be enjoyed. “At the end of the day, we’re cake converters,” says Jandri. “We want to make people fall in love with cake and give people that old school ‘walk into a candy story’ feel where you’re overwhelmed – but in a really good way.”
Preaching to the converted much?
Tip: This unique company is big on occasions and has a ‘Buy a Cupcake for a Friend’ wall in the shop where you can surprise a loved one by buying a cupcake and leaving a sticker on the wall, and notifying them to come and collect it. The shop is also big on service and is more than happy to sit down for a cake consultations or cake tastings to ensure that customers get the right cake for their special occasion.
The Bill: Baked goods at the Velvet Cake Co. reflect the quality it produces. Cakes range from R255 to R490, a set of 10 cupcakes is priced between R180 and R240, a slice of cake costs R35 (or you can get four slices for R120). Savoury muffins are R18 each and quiche cups R30 each, while a full quiche ranges between R220 and R310. There is also a range of hot beverages available that range from R20 to R30. All items can be ordered online or at the Bellville and Loop Street shops.
Opening Hours: Monday – Friday: 9am – 5pm
16 Loop Street | City Centre | Cape Town | +27 (0) 21 286 1082
by Dudu Luthuli
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