Salvation Cafe.
Salvation Cafe.

Great budget-friendly brunch spots in Joburg and Pretoria

By Debashine Thangevelo Time of article published Mar 8, 2020

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Whether its a get-together for friends, a work meeting or the celebration of a special event, brunch is always a great idea. And it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg as you will find from the places we selected below. 


The quote on their website pretty much sums up the name: “We lost our hearts to the ocean, the stars guided us home, in food, we found salvation.”

This brunch spot is great for a quick break or long catch-up. The meals are light and contemporary. Even better, the orders are made-to-order and the menu includes interesting flavours and ever-evolving specials. By the way, the loaves of bread and cakes and house-baked. It really is a relaxing atmosphere too. 

Your options include burgers, salads, wraps and sandwiches as well as the Salvation favourites. 

The 5 spice calamari, which is deep-fried and accompanied by an Asian green salad and a secret dipping sauce, Thai style fish cakes and Middle-Eastern mezze platter comes highly recommended. For the health-conscious, try the Egyptian veggie burger. It is a bunless spiced butternut and chickpea burger with grilled halloumi, avo and tzatziki. 

If you have a sweet tooth, try their New York cheesecake with berry coulis or Belgian chocolate hazelnut brownie under their something sweet menu. By the way, they have all-day pancakes, freshly squeezed juices include healthy options, as well as the usual hot beverages and a wide selection of wines, beers and ciders, bubbly, cocktails, gin and whiskey. 

Where: 44 Stanley Avenue

Call: 011 482 7795

Cost: Main meals can cost anything between R100 - 200. Drinks vary from R22 - R65.


Voodoo Lily's chicken pasta meal is one of my favourites.

I really love this spot, tucked away in the suburb. It’s got a great vibe. And it caters for every dietary need with gluten-free, vegan-friendly, dairy-free, vegetarian-friendly and banting-friendly options.  

They offer a selection of small plates, fresh salads and mains. When it comes to refreshments, diners are spoilt for choice with health lattes, health shots, health drinks, health mixes on the menu along with super shakes and the regular smoothies and hot and cold drink choices. 

I suggest you try their signature hot brisket on rye with homemade pickle, mustard and sauerkraut or their lamb bangers with mash, roast onion and gravy. A personal favourite is their chicken pimento penne. Truly delicious pasta dish. I could have licked the plate. 

Where: St Andrew St & Wrenrose Ave, Birdhaven, Johannesburg, 2196

Call: 011 442 6965

Cost: Main meals vary from R65 to R95, unless you go for the grilled linefish meal. Drinks can cost anything between R25 to R54.


Nice on 4th.

This is the home of the original egg basket. If you have never had it, it is divine and a must-try as is the salmon basket. If you are a vegetarian, don’t worry, they have an option for you. 

Their lunch menu includes paninis, chicken curry with basmati rice, freshly-baked pies, a selection of delicious pasta dishes, salads, toasted sandwiches or a fillet of beef if you are in the mood. 

You can grab a pot of tea, lattes (steamed or frozen) as well as speciality teas and coffee. If you prefer something stronger, you will not be disappointed. The desserts will leave you drooling. They even have a gluten-free Belgian chocolate cake. There is a pear and almond tart and cheesecake on offer. Seriously, you have to try this spot. 

Where: 37 4th Ave, Cnr 14th street, Parkhurst.

Call: 011 788 6286.

Cost: Main meals start at R87 and go up to R165. Regular drinks can cost between R24 to 38.


Afro-Boer: A Baker's Cafe.

Browsing the menu leaves one salivating. You will want to tuck into everything. 

The owner describes herself as “a travelling boeremeisie with my heart in Afrika Motherland” and her food reflects this. She has slow sandwiches, burgers, a selection of delicious flatbread made from biltong-carpaccio, smoked pork-neck and fresh cheese and artichoke. 

Her mains include pork-belly, steak, chicken, duck, lamb and trout options. But what really impresses in her very vegan, bashful banting and green list dishes. Given the lifestyle changes of most people, she provides a menu that is so inclusive that you don’t feel like a pariah at the table. And the tots and tantrums menu seals the deal with families looking for a nice brunch spot. The beverage options will blow your mind, too.

Where: 1 Meerlust Office Park, Meerlust Avenue.

Call: 012 807 3099.

Cost: Main meals can cost you between R94 to R130. Regular beverages start at R18 and go up to R56.


La Terrasse Rooftop Cafe & Deli.

Everything about this place is heavily influenced by the owners, Joehan and Louise Erasmus, and their exploration of Morocco, where they were left mesmerised by the architecture, culture, handicrafts and cuisine. 

Their snack platters are a must-try with spicy Moroccan beef meatballs, chickpea and garlic dip, caramelised tomato relish, phyllo pockets with herb cream cheese, fish balls and chicken and olive patties. 

The starter options include Moroccan tangy chicken wings, mussels in apple and saffron cream and more. They have a wonderful selection of vegetarian soups, which are served with baguettes made from stone-ground flour and baked in a wood-fired oven. Of the main dishes, try the lamb tagine with dates and honey. They have several other tagine options available. The chicken Bastilla looks like a winner as well. For dessert, the date and Kahlua crepe (seasonal) is a must-try as is the orange blossom cheesecake or the rosewater cheesecake. 

Where: 435 Atterbury Road, Menlo Park, Pretoria.

Call: 012 346 5713.

Cost: Main meals priced from R85 to 125. The beverages cost between R20 and R30. 

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