Address: 87 Constantia Main Rd, Constantia
Hours: 7:30am-6pm Mon-Sun
Situated in the Constantia Valley near Groot Constantia, this little farmstall/bakery/deli was the perfect place to take Granny for her birthday, having just turned 81. Who doesn’t love a good ‘padstal’ vibe? Especially when you think of freshly baked bread!
My experience was not an entirely positive one sadly. I will speak truthfully…
Upon arrival it was jam-packed, on a Friday, at lunchtime. Does no one in Cape Town work anymore? I was expecting some sort of quiet tearoom with scones and shit. Boy was I wrong. We were seated next to a young couple who seemed to be conducting a business meeting – loudly – with MacBooks, notepads, charging cables, etc as far as the eye could see. They made it their business to conduct their meeting so loudly that everyone could hear their beautifully projected voices. Generally however, it was noisy. I mean like REALLY noisy. Noisy as in I have to talk really loudly and I can’t stand that. Tip – sit outside!
The waitrons were lovely, but they seemed to be understaffed for the amount of patrons. I enquired about their vegan options as I had been told that Chardonnay Deli were GREAT for vegan options. YAY! Their menu changes daily and the options for this particular day amounted to a choice of just one – a vegan rooti. The vegan chickpea curry rooti was by feel good food vegan kitchen who (I assume) supply Chardonnay Deli with fresh deliveries and keep their pantry stocked. If memory serves me correctly I remember being told about these legendary rootis by the owner of an eatery in Obs (that I will still review sometime in the future).
I asked the waitron to please bring us some bread while we waited, and told him that any bread would be acceptable as long as it didn’t have eggs in it. There is nothing better than dipping bread in olive oil and balsamic vinegar with freshly cracked salt and pepper. The waitron returned to tell us that none of the bread was vegan. Really? None?? Not even one kind of bread? Really??? So I got up to go find someone else who could help me but the bakery side was fairly chaotic so I gave up.
When my rooti arrived, it was accompanied by a salad that had feta strewn over it. I don’t really have an issue with feta per se, but I get angry when something is advertised as ‘vegan’ and then arrives with feta. The waitress (bless her!) was clearly trying to attend to a LOT of other people’s needs, so I picked up my plate and walked to (what I really hope in retrospect) was the manager. He was really kind and agreed that it was a silly mistake. It took a while for my rooti to return with the new salad, which aggravated me even more. Maybe I got up out the wrong side of the bed this morning. Granny was loving her pie (that had meat in it).
I fared FAR better in the dessert category and out of their three (!) options ended up devouring an insanely delicious piece of vegan chocolate cake which was spot on. Maybe my day was getting a little better.
- TRUTH coffee
- their vegan chocolate cake
- the vegan rootis
- they fund on-the-ground programs for vulnerable and AIDS affected children in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa through Coffee Change.
- I found vegan tomato & basil soup in their fridge (R45)
- too squashed to actually be pleasant
- too loud and chaotic
- poor service due to being under-staffed (on the day we went specifically)
I’m looking down and I’m not wearing my ‘judgy pants’. Phew. This wasn’t a great experience sadly. If ever I was in the area, I’d skip it for lunch but would definitely pick up a slice of chocolate cake to go.
No bread that is vegan friendly? Really???