A quaint little gem in Birdhaven, Johannesburg, Arbour Café & Courtyard had me mesmerised with its humble details and divine cuisine. Not to mention its surprise courtyard that you won’t know about unless you peek inside.
Owned by entrepreneurs Larry and Annie Hodes, this is one secret spot I would have loved to keep for myself. But, the Christmas spirit is running high and therefore I will spill the beans…
Upon entering Arbour Café & Courtyard, you’d think it’s a smallish type of coffee shop, perfect for a quick cuppa or a take-away Americano with one of those delightful, freshly baked chocolate croissants. Well, I guess it’s that too, but when you walk through, past the kitchen, a humble little haven awaits. It’s got that French country garden feel to it, with wrought iron chairs, tables with cemented tops and blossoming Star Jasmine gently crawling up the walls and effortlessly decorating the secret courtyard.
It’s simple, yet elegant. It’s peaceful, yet busy. It’s trendy, yet homy. It’s my kind of happy place.
Breakfast at Arbour is probably one of the best ways to start your day in Joburg. They’re also perfectly prepared for patrons who prefer gluten-free options (which I often lean towards). Their floral menu is beautiful with a range of carefully thought through options to choose from under both a breakfast and lunch menu respectively. I indulged in one of their Buckwheat Breakfast Crepes and coupled it with an artfully prepared cup of cappuccino (complete with little foam feet on top).
Arbour Café is a daily stop for many people from the Birdhaven neighbourhood and it’s just around the corner from the Peech Hotel and the James & Ethel Gray Park, which makes it the perfect get-together spot. Their coffee brand is Coffefe from the Coffefe Roastery just around the corner – a partnership that was born in lockdown and complements are at the order of the day when it comes to the blends on offer.
Larry Hodes is also the owner of the Gourmet Grocer, which forms part of the Voodoo Lily Café and Coffefe Roastery and here you can find all kinds of goodies, including Halaal products, locally produced products and products that promote sustainable living.
So, if you’re ever in the area, be sure to pop in at Arbour Café and while you’re there, buy yourself a can of Coffefe coffee and some delicious foodie goodies next door.