i cannot even begin to tell you how refreshing it is not to have high streets that are ‘polluted’ with the massive conglomerate chain stores. having said that it’s not that i am not a fan of these chain stores….. in fact many of my dreams take place in the vicinity of a ‘pret’ or an ‘h&m’ store…. but nonetheless it is quite refreshing. being the capitalist manic world we live in i have no doubt that it won’t be for long & before we know it we will probably have a starbucks on every corner in south africa…. so i plan to enjoy the ‘freedom’ while it lasts!

it means that for now there are some fabulous coffee shops all competing for customers and all churning out excellent coffee. being the coffee lover / addict / connoisseur that i am, i am always in search of the ‘best coffee’ in town & well it has been a quest since i have arrived here & trust me i have been doing a LOT of research…. in fact, as i’m unemployed i seem to be spending a lot of time in them!

so here are my ratings for the top five in my books: (if any of you disagree and think there are better places please be sure to let me know…. i’m always open to changing my mind!)

the general consensus seems to be that giovanni’s in sea point serves the greatest coffee in town and whilst i thought so at first my mind has definitely changed since doing further exploring. having said that the atmosphere at giovanni’s is great, the deli is excellent (if not quite pricey) and it’s one of the best ‘people watching’ spots in town. the staff however really do have attitude, personally i think that could be down to the kind of clientele they have to deal with, let’s just say i wouldn’t be requesting a ‘skinny latte with hazlenut syrup’…. you might get your block knocked off! my vote: 7.5/10

in my fourth spot there is a joint place:  ‘truth’. i love their coffee & i love their shop near the waterkant. the staff are fantastic & super friendly. i often go and work their (as they have free wi-fi which is a real perk in this town!). they also have a tiny little outlet outside the waterfront which is a welcome little ray of light in the great big tourist trap. my vote: 8/10. in joint third place i have melissa’s…. especially the one on kloof street. man they make great take-away coffee. in fact i just love melissa’s on the whole. their food is excellent. the staff are amazing & it’s a great place to just ‘be’ by yourself… oh and don’t even get me started on their amazing jams & home-made rusks! my vote 8/10

in my third spot is ‘w’ the woolworths coffee shop serving the most divine organic coffee. one of my favourite past-times is to hide-away at the ‘w’ in the waterfront – it is just has the most amazing view, the coffee is out of this world and the food is excellent. it’s a hard place to beat! the fact that it is part of a chain let’s it down & the staff sometimes like to have a good moan. but other than that it is fabulous! they also serve the most delicious ‘tapa’s’ boards. my vote 8.5/10

in second place is ‘loading bay’. the coffee is excellent. yes, yes, the coffee most certainly is excellent. thing is the owner of the shop who is also a barista behind the counter just happens to be beyond drop dead gorgeous. so, truth be told, i’m not too sure how much he has influenced my vote…. because i have a feeling he could be serving watered down ‘nescafe’ instant & i’d probably still have him in my top four! no, seriously the coffee is amazing and the rest of the staff are brilliant & great to chat to….. when one can concentrate!!!! my vote 9/10

drumroll…. and in first place is most definitely the ‘espresso lab’ in the biscuit mill. i only discovered this place last week and oh my word…. a coffee lover’s heaven! now i have had good coffee in my time…. but this was leaps & bounds ahead of anything i have ever tasted. they have their own little coffee factory on the premises which is all done in white butcher tiles – just gorgeous! the staff are so friendly & coffee is definitely their passion! my only moan is that they are just too faraway to drop in on a daily basis…. but perhaps in my case that is a good thing! my vote 9.5/10 (well nothing’s perfect!)