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Long Street Café
The art of New York cool in the heart of Cape Town
In a city where restaurants come and go at a fairly rapid pace, Long Street Café has firmly established itself as a much-loved Cape Town institution. For the last 16 years this restaurant and bar has been providing Capetonians and visitors with delicious eats, chilled drinks and good times.
Owners Howard Mauerberger and Dimo Papachristodoulou have seen Long Street go through many changes over the years, but say that their café has stayed the same. “It’s a landmark on Long Street; it represents what the street is about. People have come and gone; but the look and character of the street hasn’t changed that much,” says Howard.
The timeless style and design of Long Street Café, with its open setting and relaxed décor, has been kept current with a recent update of sleek red booths. From tables on the sidewalk where patrons can soak up the sun while sipping on a mojito to the booths and couches where you can relax with friends inside there is something to suit everyone.
This is one of those rare spots where both the food as well as the cocktails are worth a try. This makes it a fantastic place for after work drinks, the kind that continue on past sunset and into dinner time. Choose from their laid-back café fare that includes burgers, pastas and bar favourites like chilli poppers and nachos. The avocado, mushroom and feta pizza is a firm favourite, all their pizzas are made the traditional way in a wood-fired clay oven. The meat platters serve three or four people and include ribs, beef kebabs, chicken kebabs and wings and fries – perfect drinking food.
I like Pina Coladas
A visit to Long Street Café would not be complete without indulging in one (or more) of their legendary cocktails. Play it safe with a classic martini or try their famous Long Street Café Iced Tea - a local version of the rather potent orginal. This cocktail is definitely not recommended for the lightweights! If pretty drinks with umbrellas aren’t your thing then choose from their extensive list of wines, beers, whiskys, liqueurs and spirits. They also sell Castle and Black Label draughts for the beer lovers. For a delicious taste of South Africa buy a round of Springbok shooters.
Look out for specials and events happening all week. You can expect to find beer specials, fantastic meals at great prices and karaoke nights for when you feeling like belting out some tunes. Plus, they screen all the major sporting events so keep it in mind next time there’s a game on.
Coffee shop culture
During the day this night-time party spot has an equally cool vibe. Stop by for a full English breakfast with all the trimmings or a bowl of muesli with Greek yogurt, fresh fruit and honey. The comfy couches, bar seating at the window and the free Wi-Fi make this a popular spot for people to catch up on their emails in the morning. For those of you who aren’t office bound this is an ideal place to park your laptop for the day while you work. The easy, bistro-style food makes it a favourite lunch and meeting place for locals and its landmark status means that visitors to Cape Town can often be found enjoying its local flavour.
Long Street Café has become an intrinsic part of Cape Town culture. It attracts a cosmopolitan mix of locals and tourists alike with the promise of good food, a substantial cocktail menu and a fantastic viewing spot for people watching on one of Cape Town’s most interesting streets.
Try daily happy hour at this bar with a balcony that overlooks Long Street.
Djembe drumming and food from across the continent at Mama Africa.