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Eating Out in Johannesburg, South Africa

South Africa and its cities are home to a multitude of ethnic groups who have been settling there over the past number of centuries. Understandably, evidence of this cultural diversity manifests itself in numerous different ways throughout the country and the cuisine and restaurants of Johannesburg are no exception. With over two thousand restaurants in the Gauteng province, there is absolutely no risk of ending up lacking in the food department.

But, with so much choice, there’s always that other problem – where to go and what to choose. Unfortunately, in Johannesburg, safety plays quite a large role in deciding where you’re going to eat or drink after dark. Nevertheless, there are more than enough perfectly safe areas with restaurants representing almost every country you care to mention.

Johannesburg has a strong Chinese presence ever since the first immigrants arrived from there back in the mid-17th century. The city boasts two different Chinatown regions so if it’s a good old Chinese feast you’re after take yourself off to the Cyrildene or Bruma and Eastgate districts. With over thirty established Chinese restaurants, you won’t be disappointed.

The Rosebank area of the city is also a pretty safe area and is home to a wonderful array of eateries. Excellent place to have lunch thanks to the host of shopping centres and malls in the vicinity. Also much cheaper than going to a more upmarket restaurant but the food is equally as good and portions are usually bigger.

For those of you who just can’t survive without your pastas and pizzas, the good news that an Italian district has also developed in Johannesburg. You will find an excellent selection of authentic Italian restaurants around Orange Grove which is north of the Observatory and again, this area is perfectly safe. Just remember your way around and don’t end up off your original route.

Another popular restaurant district is found in suburban Melville where you can sample some true South African food and drink. You can also sample some traditional sights and sounds as there is live native music in many establishments which really assist with regard to your immersion into the local culture.

These are just a few ideas to help whet your appetite but anything you desire from Asian to Thai and British to Japanese is served up in some kitchen or other in Johannesburg. The only thing you need to do is work up an appetite and remember to enquire about an area’s safety before going there.

Restaurants in Johannesburg

  • Jargonelles

    110 Caroline Street, Brixton, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Doubling as one of the most popular cabaret venues in the city, Jargonelles serves up a host of French specialties and has a live show nightly from 7.30pm. And, if you just want to come for the show that’s fine too.

  • Gramadoelas

    Market Theatre Complex, Bree Street, Johannesburg, South Africa

    For a true taste of South Africa, this is the eatery to visit. From the décor to the menu which includes a rather interesting crocodile concoction, everything about Gramadoelas will make your meal worthwhile

  • Kofifi

    Market Theatre Complex, Bree Street, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Another establishment specialising in local cuisine but Kofifi also has live shows every night and a courtyard for those of you who wish to seize the opportunity to eat al fresco. A fun venue with very reasonable dishes and a full bar.

  • Charros Curry

    Time Square Complex, Corner of Raleigh St. & Fortesque Rd., Johannesburg, South Africa

    One of the more popular Indian restaurants among visitors and locals alike, prices are reasonable at under R20 per dish, curries are excellent and takeaway is the order of the day.

  • Catz Pyjamas

    7 Main Road, Melville, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Open twenty-four hours, Catz Pyjamas is one for all you night clubbers looking for an early breakfast on your way home.

  • Global Wrapps

    No. 3 7th Street, Melville, Johannesburg, South Africa

    For a cheap and somewhat healthy alternative Global Wrapps is one of those increasingly popular wrap and smoothie eateries where you basically decide on your own menu.

  • Ratz

    9B 7th Street, Melville, Johannesburg, South Africa

    With live jazz at weekends, an extensive Tex-Mex menu and an all-important happy hour where cocktails cost a very appealing R11, Ratz is definitely one to add to your itinerary.

  • The Slow Coach

    57 Raleigh Street, Yeoville, Johannesburg, South Africa

    For something a little different this restaurant which occupies a South African train parked in the street should suffice. Oh the food is pretty good too, particularly for the pancake fans among you.

  • Kapitan's Cafe

    11A Kort Street, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Once a favourite of Mandelas, this is one of the city’s oldest restaurants. Serving up excellent Indian cuisine for under R30 but only opens for lunch.

  • Sam's Cafe

    No. 11 7th Street, Melville, Johannesburg, South Africa

    Another quirky restaurant serving budget pizzas, pastas and baked potatoes for all you hungry paupers out there.

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