Just In Time For Spring!

South Africa announced a progressive ease of restrictions which allows Four Seasons Hotel, The Westcliff, Johannesburg, to reopen its doors as of 01 September 2020, with the utmost care, and launching the Four Seasons brand’s new global Lead With Care program and contactless Chat experience.

Whilst international borders remain closed to passengers for the time being, and we all await for global air access to progressively resume, South Africa’s domestic flights now operate, and the Hotel looks forward to welcoming their loyal South African guests on business, and well-deserved gateway leisure stays.

Westcliff Jacaranda

The ambiance is like a sun-splashed Mediterranean village laced with courtyards, fountains and gardens. Sprawled across the hillside in multiple buildings with panoramic views over Johannesburg’s urban forest, Four Seasons Hotel, The Westcliff, Johannesburg boasts a cool and contemporary style inspired by modern Africa. All accommodations open out onto garden terraces or balconies, that make the most of the magnificent views. This luxurious hotel offers the ideal base for both leisure and business travelers, who want to experience a lavish and unique holiday in South Africa.

Upon reopening, facilities such as the gym and their destination Four Seasons Spa will operate with adjusted hours and new procedures in place to comply with Lead With Care and the most current South African health authorities regulations. Their Meetings & Events offerings have similarly been updated, elevating social and corporate events to a new definition of ultimate care.

Bring The Entire Family

Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff has long established itself as the most family-friendly destination in Johannesburg with the introduction of their newly appointed two-bedroom Family Room. Balancing space and style with an elegant and contemporary African theme, the Family Rooms are conveniently located near the family pool and offer two interconnecting bedrooms. The children's room has its own TV, kids' channels and a variety of children’s games, designed to make the whole family feel right at home while giving parents peace of mind.

With bookings now open, visit their website to discover their various offers and book today.

four seasons hotel the westcliff

The Perfect Joburg “Staycation”

Are you ready for your next staycation? Experience ultimate relaxation and tranquility in the Hotel's secluded urban resort. Let them enhance your Joburg staycation with 15% off your room rate, and complimentary for two: their celebrated champagne breakfast, or choose our famous brunch (early seating on days when brunch is served).

With bookings now open, visit their website and book today.

Dine At Flames Restaurant

Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff announced the reopening of Flames Restaurant, Joburg’s premier luxury lifestyle venue, and the return of its celebrated Brunches and Sundowners "on the hill"! Loyal Joburg patrons will once again be able to enjoy the iconic views of the Jozi skyline, fabulous cocktails and dining, as well as the reinvented care of the Four Seasons’ team.

The seating capacity has been reduced well beyond mandated requirements to offer ample physical distancing. Aside from South African health authorities’ regulations being rigorously followed, guests can relax in the knowledge that their health and safety is the greatest priority with Four Seasons additional Lead with Care health and safety protocols implemented globally.

Pre-bookings for lunch, brunch, sundowners and dinner are mandatory to enable us to ensure our guests a safe and comfortable seating experience.

Visit flamesrestaurant.co.za to book or call the hotel directly to know more on opening hours.

Four Seasons The Westcliff

The Four Seasons Spa Westcliff

Let the Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff help you take some time to reconnect with yourself in their celebrated destination Spa before enjoying a visit at Après-Spa, the only outdoor Spa Lounge in Jozi, and their exclusive poolside open-air treatment suites.

The operating hours and available offerings will be limited to align with the current government regulations and their Lead With Care protocols.

Visit fourseasonsspa.co.za to book or call the hotel directly to know more on opening hours.

Welcoming Guests Back with the Utmost Care

Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff recognises that the expectations and needs of the hotel experience have changed, and the safety and comfort of guests, employees and residents remains of highest priority. As such, Four Seasons has embarked on an important new global health and safety program, Lead With Care, providing ongoing, real-time guidance on the evolving COVID-19 situation.

Grounded in best in class healthcare expertise and enabled by access to leading technologies and tools, the Lead With Care program is focused on providing care, confidence and comfort to all Four Seasons guests, employees and residents within the new COVID-19 environment. The new program outlines clear procedures that educate and empower Four Seasons employees to take care of guests and each other.

While guests will see many of the enhanced Lead With Care procedures, numerous behind-the-scenes measures will also take place through employee training, additional food handling protocols, enhancements to ventilation systems, and other back-of-the-house operations.

In addition, Four Seasons continues to invest in its award-winning App and Chat that further allows guests to control how they engage with others – limiting face-to-face interactions while maintaining the highest levels of high touch personal service. Features include the ability from anywhere, to make and manage reservations, request luggage pickup, airport transfers, room service, restaurant and spa reservations, any concierge service requests, and much more. Wait-free check-in and check-out is also offered, while Four Seasons Chat integration offers instant translation of 100+ languages giving guests the flexibility for contactless engagement throughout their stay.

For More Information

For more information about the Four Seasons Hotel The Westcliff, visit www.fourseasons.com.

You can contact them on 011 481 6000 or [email protected].

Don’t forget to like and follow them on FacebookTwitter and Instagram to stay up to date with the latest news, events, offers and more.

Eggnog

Traditionally served over Yuletide, this warming, slightly spicy and oh-so sweet drink is perfect for your Christmas in July celebrations.

Ingredients: 

Method: 

  1. In a small bowl, combine 1/2 C milk and 1/2 C cream and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, nutmeg and sugar until slightly thickened.
  3. Heat remaining cream and milk in a saucepan over a medium heat until steaming.
  4. Slowly pour the milk mixture into the egg mixture, while stirring continuously.
  5. Return the milk mixture to a medium-low heat. Stir the mixture frequently until it thickens slightly and reaches about 80°C. Don't overheat the mixture.
  6. Remove from heat and immedietely add the milk and cream mixture you set aside earlier. Then strain the mixture through a sieve.
  7. Stir in the rum and vanilla essence.
  8. Serve chilled with a sprinkle of nutmeg.

*Recipe sourced from Joy The Baker.

Eggnog

Image sourced from www.freepik.com

Mulled Wine

Made with red wine, warm spices, refreshing citrus and just a little sweetness, this is just the drink to get you through the winter chills.

Ingredients:

Method: 

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large saucepan over a medium heat.
  2. Cook the wine until it just barely reaches a simmer. Avoid letting it bubble or the alcohol will cook out.
  3. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for 15 minutes to 3 hours.
  4. Strain the mixture.
  5. Taste the wine and add more sugar if necessary.
  6. Serve warm.

*Recipe sourced from Gimme Some Oven.

Mulled Wine

Image sourced from www.pixabay.com

Irish Coffee

This simple recipe makes a wonderful cup of spiked coffee to keep you warm on even the coldest of night. Finish off your drink with shaved chocolate for an extra indulgence.

Ingredients: 

Method: 

  1. Pour the whiskey into a heat-proof glass and add the sugar. Add a splash of coffee and stir until the sugar dissolves.
  2. Add the rest of the coffee, stir and taste. Add additional sugar, to taste.
  3. Top with whipped cream and enjoy.

*Recipe sourced from Cookie and Kate.

Irish Coffee

Image sourced from www.pixabay.com

Hot Buttered Rum

As odd as this drink may seem, it is a popular choice to ward off the cold overseas. The mixture of aromatics and dark rum is sure to warm you up in a jiffy.

Ingredients:

Method: 

  1. Bring water, butter, sugar and spices to a boil over a high heat.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in rum.
  4. Serve and enjoy.

Recipe sourced from Epicurious.

Hot Buttered Rum

Image sourced from www.freepik.com

Kahlua Hot Chocolate

Looking for a warm, creamy and chocolatey drink? Then why not indulge in a yummy cup of hot chocolate, spiked with some grown up juice?

Ingredients:

Method:

  1. In a small saucepan, mix together sugar, cocoa and cinnamon. Gradually mix in milk.
  2. Simmer until heated through.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in Kahlua.
  4. Ladle into mugs and serve.

*Recipe sourced from Taste of Home.

Kuhlua Hot Chocolate

Image sourced from www.pixabay.com

Hot Toddy

If the winter blues have you feeling a touch under the weather, then warm up with a classic hot toddy. The honey, lemon and spices will have you in top form in no time.

Ingredients: 

Method:

  1. Whisk the whiskey and honey together and divide between two glasses.
  2. Add half a cinnamon stick to each and top with boiling water.
  3. Add a splash of lemon juice.
  4. Finish with a slice of lemon and a clove.
  5. Serve immediately.

*Recipe sourced from BBC Good Food.

Hot Toddy

Image sourced from www.freepik.com

Do you have any winter warmer cocktail recipes? Let us know about them in the comments section below.

Disclaimer: Please shop, drink and enjoy responsibly. Refer to lockdown regulations regarding the sale of alcohol during level 3. 

Southside Cocktail

Are you a fan of mojitos as well as gin? Then you'll definitely love this Southside Cocktail recipe. This cocktail is also known as a gin-style mojito. Also known as a mojito, gin-style. Not only is it super refreshing and delicious, but it's quite easy to make! Here's a Southside Cocktail recipe by Geoffrey Zakarian via Food Network:

Ingredients:

Method:

  1. Combine the gin, lime juice, sugar syrup and mint sprig in a shaker.
  2. Add some ice cubes and shake vigorously.
  3. Strain into a chilled martini glass.
  4. Garnish with one mint leaf, smacked to release the oils, floating on top of the cocktail.

Quick sugar syrup recipe by BBC Good Food:

Source: www.foodnetwork.com

southside cocktail

Southside Cocktail from The Food Network by Geoffrey Zakarian.

French 75 Cocktail

Ever thought of mixing gin with champagne? You can combine these two favourites into one glass and sip away on a French 75 cocktail. It's just like a mimosa, but lighter. This is usually an absolute hit at most social gatherings, but since we're all in lockdown, there's nothing wrong with making a jug all for yourself! Take a look at this easy recipe by Amanda Formaro on Amanda's Cookin':

Ingredients:

Method:

  1. Using a paring knife or a zester, slice peel from lemon, going all the way around to create a long spiral.
  2. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add gin, lemon juice and simple syrup. Shake vigorously for 20 seconds.
  3. Strain into a chilled champagne flute and top with Brut.
  4. Curl lemon peel around a wooden spoon or your finger to create a long twist.
  5. Garnish drink with twist and serve immediately.

Source: amandascookin.com

French 75 Cocktail bu Amanda's Cookin'

French 75 Cocktail by Amanda's Cookin'. Image by Amanda's Cookin'.

Pink Lady Cocktail

How about a pink cocktail to lift your spirits? Try this Pink Lady Gin cocktail recipe from BBC Good Food. It's perfect if you're planning a Zoom hangout with your girlfriends or simply just want to enjoy something on the sweet side.

Ingredients:

Method:

  1. Put two cocktail glasses in the fridge to chill. Pour the gin and grenadine into a cocktail shaker, then fill with ice. Shake until the outside of the shaker feels ice-cold. Strain the mixture into a jug, discarding the ice.
  2. Tip the egg white into the shaker and pour in the gin mixture. Shake well until the egg white is frothy – you can also do this in a food processor or using a hand blender, if you like.
  3. Pour the cocktail into the prepared glasses.
  4. Skewer the cherries onto cocktail sticks, if using, then use to garnish the glasses along with the lemon zest, if you like.

Tip: Homemade Grenadine

Source: www.bbcgoodfood.com

Pink Lady Cocktail

Pink Lady Cocktail recipe by Miriam Nice via BBC Good Food. Image by BBC Good Food.

Spiced G&T

Not looking for a pretty cocktail? If you enjoy drinking your G&T as is with a few flavoured elements, then try this Spiced G&T from BBC Good Food. This twist on a G&T is perfect to enjoy before or after a hearty winter warmer meal and looks absolutely fabulous and refreshing.

Ingredients:

To garnish:

Method:

  1. Put a large handful of ice in a big glass, then pour over 50ml cardamom-spiced gin.
  2. Crush 2-3 whole cardamom pods so they just split open and drop those in too.
  3. Pour over 100ml classic tonic water, then garnish with fresh or dried rose petals.

Source: www.bbcgoodfood.com

Spiced G&T

Spiced G&T recipe by Miriam Nice via BBC Good Food. Image by BBC Good Food.

Rainbow Cake 

Yes, we know it's completely cheesy, but baking your own rainbow cake in honour of Pride is so much fun. Besides, what is lockdown but a great excuse to bake up a storm? So, get out the flour, sugar, milk, food colouring and piping bags! Enjoy your Pride cake with friends over video chat or with family allies at home. Don't worry about overindulging, you can get back to exercising next month. Here's a simple recipe from the Yuppiechef blog to follow to make a perfect, moist and colourful rainbow cake - it makes six layers so be prepared to get a little messy in the kitchen!

Dress Up Party 

Pride is all about expressing your authentic self in as many ways possible. Even though you may not be able to go out and celebrate with friends, you can still host an online dress up party. Decorate your living space with balloons, streamers, flags and any other Pride memorabilia you have on hand. Then put on a fashion parade for all your fabulous friends. We like the idea of a 1980s themed disco ball, but it's completely up to you. As long as you're having fun and being true to yourself, go right ahead!

LGBT Pride Month

Fancy Cocktails

When last did you let your hair down? Even though we're still cooped up under lockdown, you can have a raving good time in your own company. Put on your favourite dance album and whip up a jug or two of your cocktail of choice. Running low on liquor? Check out these convenient online ordering apps. Alternatively, embrace the sober lifestyle and enjoy a few mocktails instead - it's all the fun without the morning headache.

Join The Community 

The best part of Pride celebrations is getting to meet and mingle with people just like you. If you don't already have a circle of LGBT friends and allies, spend some time this Pride Month getting to know people online. Or you can follow various LGBT+ organisations on social media to see how you can give back to your community during lockdown. For example, Johannesburg Pride of Africa has been running food drives for LGBT+ refugees and other vulnerable persons throughout lockdown. If you are healthy and able, help make a difference is someone else's life this Pride Month by volunteering your time or by making a donation.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B_uDadLj7hT/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

Date Night

If you're lucky enough to be spending lockdown with the person you love, treat them to a romantic date night in this Pride Month. Singeltons, you can also plan a lockdown date night, but for yourself. Spoil yourself with a few at-home beauty care routines or take some time to focus on your mental health. Remember that Pride Month is about celebrating LGBT history, as well as yourself as a member of the community. Be proud of what you have achieved and let your flag fly high!

Happy Pride Month! Stay safe and we'll see you out and about in the city to celebrate soon. 

Dine

Joburg is a wonder world of culinary experiences. If you are anything at all like us, you have been missing out on restaurant hopping across town. As soon as we are able to get out and explore again, these will be our top two Joburg dining picks:

Modena Italian Eatery

If there was ever any doubt that 4th Avenue in Parkhurst is one of Joburg's culinary centres, Modena Italian Eatery has proven critics wrong. This Italian-inspired eatery opened in February 2020, just before chaos erupted. Their menu features a delightful selection of traditional Italian dishes, as well as a few with a modern twist. We will most certainly be stopping by once life returns to relative normality to sample their Napolitana di Modena – a traditional tomato ragu served with bocconcini mozzarella over homemade pasta with a nice tall glass of wine.

L'atelier Bakery

Just before the national lockdown began, we were fortunate enough to attend the grand opening of L'atelier Bakery at the Trumpet Building on Keyes Avenue. This French-Belgian inspired patisserie wowed us with their array of pastries and savoury delights. We will surely be back once the lockdown has ended to sample some more of their tasty treats.

Latelier Bakery

L'atelier Bakery

Drink

Speaking of wine, have you run out of your favourite tipple? With liquor sales banned for the last two months, we have become a city of teetotalers. But, for those of you who will be headed straight to the nearest drinking hole once we have bid COVID-19 farewell, here are two of Jozi's best cocktail spots to welcome you back to the scene:

Saigon Suzy 

Seeing the back side of COVID-19 is going to call for a massive celebration. So, why not go all out with a night of delicious dim sum, cocktails and karaoke? With two venues in Joburg, Saigon Suzy is likely to see her loyal patrons return in their hordes (at a distance, of course) for an epic night out on the town. Don't miss out on all the fun!

Social Parkwood

The creator of Saigon Suzy is also the brainchild behind Social Parkwood. If it's fancy cocktails you want, it's fancy cocktails you'll get here. They also cater to other drink preferences, so no matter your poison, you should be pleased. Social's restaurant element isn't to be snubbed either, as they elegantly combine the bar and restaurant to give their patrons a great overall experience. What more could you need to get back into the Joburg party vibe?

Social Parkwood

Social Parkwood

Dance 

How about an evening of uninhibited dancing? While there have been a number of awesome live streaming events to keep you jiving throughout lockdown, there is nothing quite like a night out on the town in your dancing shoes. Here's where you can strap them on and get moving again!

Canteen 

If you've ever visited the Maboneng Precinct, you'll know that Canteen is the place to be. Not only is their menu generous in variety and flavour, but their rooftop salsa events are unrivaled. Whether you are a seasoned professional or complete amateur, this vibrant rooftop party is sure to get your toes tapping. Combined with the fantastic view of the inner city below, Canteen's Sunday salsa event is a definite must-attend once lockdown is over and we can safely leave our homes.

Carfax & And

From the rooftops to the underground, the Joburg party scene is as diverse as the people who bring it to life. If you're after something grungier than usual, visit Carfax & And, Newtown's most exciting secret dance club venues. And specialises in techno and drum and bass parties, so expect a raving party. Carfax boasts a similar vibe, but hosts more exclusive events including art exhibitions and private artist parties, so you'll have to keep your ear to the ground to get yourself a ticket in the door. Nevertheless, these venues are unlike any other in the city and are well worth a visit on your first night out on the town after lockdown.

top Jozi destinations

Stay Over

Being cooped up at home for months can cause serious cabin fever. If you can no longer stand the sight of your own couch, bed or kitchen cupboards, take a few days to recuperate at one of these two awesome Jozi hotels. One is a budget-friendly bakcpacker's haven, the other a world-class, architectural marvel. Whichever you choose, we are sure you will have a ball being away from home for awhile.

Once In Joburg

Once In Joburg is unofficially known as Joburg's only 'poshtel' - a perfect mish-mash of classy hotel and hostel situated right in the heart of Braamfontein. During the national lockdown period, Once In Joburg will be functioning as a safe harbour for health care workers as part of the Ubuntu Beds campaign. However, once things return to normal, we are sure that they will be ready to welcome in adventurous travellers. If you have always wanted to explore your city by night, this is the place to stay over. So, go on and tick those adventures off your bucket list. If lockdown has taught us anything, it's that life is meant to be lived to the fullest.

The Johannesburg Marriott Hotel Melrose Arch

The Johannesburg Marriott Hotel Melrose Arch and Marriott Executive Apartments Johannesburg Melrose Arch opened on Sunday, 1 March 2020. Boasting an impressive 306 rooms and modern facilities, this hotel is where consummate professionals and tourists alike can relax, rejuvenate and negotiate all at once. As global travel may be off the cards for a few months to come, book yourself into this luxury hotel for a weekend getaway, right in the heart of the city.

JohannesburgMarriottHotelMelrose_Exterior_Landscape

Explore

Joburg is undoubtedly an urban jungle. Get out into the fresh air once lockdown is over by visiting Joburg's top parks and nature reserves. Our top picks include a protected nature reserve hidden right in the heart of Houghton and the best art and sculpture park in Gauteng. So, get on those hiking books and go on an adventure!

The Wilds

The Wilds has undergone massive reconstruction and revitalisation in recent years. Home to some of Joburg's most unique indigenous plant species, this is the perfect destination to reintroduce yourself to the wild outdoors. Set against the Melville koppies, the park offers adventurers an array of winding paths and hills to explore. This is also a great spot to take a few wildlife snaps and post-lockdown selfies set against the Joburg skyline.

NIROX Sculpture Park

Art imitates life, doesn't it? The NIROX Sculpture Park reflects the dichotomy between man-made art and the natural world with perfect balance. Stroll their expansive sculpture gardens, artist studios and the park's natural wonders on a lazy Sunday afternoon. The on-site restaurant is famed for its generous Sunday afternoon lunches, so bring the whole family along for a post-lockdown celebration feast.

top jozi destinations

Sourced from the NIROX Foundation Facebook page

A Little Bit Of Culture 

Have you been enjoying tons of online theatre, music and visual art content while in lockdown? Unfortunately, there is nothing quite like the real thing. Treat yourself to a night out at the theatre or the cinema and help get the arts community back on its feet after lockdown.

The Market Theatre

The Market Theatre has stood as an icon of South African theatre since 1976. If you've never visited this historic theatre venue before, hop on over the M1 to Newtown as soon as lockdown ends. With its air of urban jazz culture and casual 'coolness', the Market Theatre bar is the ideal place to hang out before the show begins. Here you'll most likely bump into a few famous faces and possibly some new friends. So, put on your peddler's hat and earn yourself a good dose of theatre culture.

The Bioscope Independent Cinema 

Our final top Jozi destination to visit post-lockdown is The Bioscope Independent Cinema. Shortly before lockdown was implemented, The Bioscope made their big move out of the Maboneng Precinct. Their new home at 44 Stanley should be completed once we are all set free, so you can get back to enjoying independent cinema right away. Grab the popcorn and slushies because we are totally ready to go on a big screen adventure!

https://www.instagram.com/p/B9Y2EeDDbyH/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link

Ready to get planning your post-lockdown adventures across the city? Check out these awesome experience packages you can buy now and enjoy later!

What Is It?

Chill and wind down from the hectic week with some delicious cocktails and music at the Super Cool Saturdays @ Living Room.

Let's enjoy the amazing views of the city with a drink in hand while listening to some groovy music. The best combination to take in the city.

Grab some friend and head out to the vibey Maboneng.

Get your tickets now!

Where Is It?

Living Room, 20 Kruger Street, 5th Floor, Maboneng, Johannesburg, Gauteng

When Is It?

Saturday, 14 March 2020 at 10:00 - 22:00

How Much Is It?

Tickets are R50 per person, get your tickets Here.

Tables for between 2 - 14 people range from R200 - R1400.

For More Information

For more information, check out their Facebook page.

Check out more about The Maboneng Precinct.

Trumpet Sounds

Sotto Sopra takes over the expansive Atrium of the Trumpet Building on Keyes Avenue. This artist and foodie hub buzzes over weekends and on the first Thursday of the month, as cosmopolitans from all around Jozi descend on Rosebank's newest art precinct. Situated right next to the magnificent Circa building, Sotto Sopra is likely to become a regular after-work drinks spot and romantic date destination.

The design of the restaurant reflects its artsy surrounds - with pop-arty abstract influences in the furniture and mural features. Downstairs at Sotto, the furnishings are funky and even a little kitsch (but in the best way possible). Cylindrical shapes and vibrant pops of colour dominant the space, giving it an overall look of art come to life. The upstairs venue is slightly more sophisticated. With a trendy floor-to-ceiling plant wall and cosy seating behind glass doors, Sopra offers its patrons a luxurious dining experience overlooking the bustling street below.

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Our living wall created using only fern species and about 40 orchids amongst them - wonder if and when they will flower 🌸 #eatsottosopra #interiordesign #beitalian #pizza #pasta #modernitalian #livewall #atrium

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Upside-Down Dining

The idea behind Sotto Sopra's design is quite ingenious. The bottom level, Sotto, offers guests a traditional Italian trattoria experience – serving thin-based Roman-style pizza and handmade pasta in a flamboyant, open and relaxing dining area. This is ideal for a quick meeting, sundowners with colleagues or a speedy lunch on-the-go. 

Sotto Sopra

Sotto

The menu for Sotto was finalised with the restaurant's official opening in February 2020, serving a range of stuzzichini (bar snacks), antipasti, mains, secondi and desserts to tantalise your tastebuds. Using only the freshest Italian ingredients, the culinary team have designed a menu that reflects the simplicity of Italian cuisine, while still playing to our unique South African palates.

There are also a number of vegetarian options available on the menu, including salted vegetable crisps, zucchini fritti, Melanzane alla Parmigiana (oven baked aubergine with pomodori, basil pesto, mozzarella and Parmesan) and Pumpkin Pizza (roasted pumpkin, feta, sage and chilli, topped with pumpkin seeds and wild rocket).

Sotto Sopra

Sotto's thin-based pizzas are expertly made with the finest stone ground, GMO- and bleach-free flours, which are fermented for 72 hours to give the best flavour, light texture and allow for easy digestion. 30 years in the making, owner Carrara believes that they have perfected this Italian menu staple. After sampling their Pizza Burrata – fresh burrata, roasted cherry tomatoes and fresh herbs – we must agree. Wood-fired, cheesy and sweet from the roasted tomatoes, this is an ideal sharing meal between friends or loved ones. 

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Che pizza! What a pizza! The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you’re hungry again 😂👌🏻 Don’t miss out on some of the best pizzas in joburg! Book now sottosopra.trumpet #pizza #italian #italianfood #italianculture #mediterranean #keyesartmile #rosebank #sandton

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Sotto's drink offerings stick by the formula of simplicity - with Italian classics making up the majority of their cocktail menu. If you've never had the opportunity to sample a true Italian cocktail, this would be the place to do so. Choose between the iconic Negroni, Americano or Aperol Spritz. A glass in hand paired with one of Sotto's tasty bar snacks makes for the perfect late afternoon scene. 

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Aperol Spritz - it’s going to be a fabulous day...

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Sopra

The upstairs element of the restaurant sees authentic Italian restaurant dining taken to a level of excellence and considered perfection. At Sopra, there is an a la carte menu offering of antipasti, primi, secondi and dolci. Very soon, the restaurant will also be introducing its six and nine course degustation menus with wine pairings. The restaurant comfortably seats 80 patrons and feels completely separate from the trattoria below. New date night destination anyone?

Unfortunately, we weren't able to sample Sopra's selection of Italian gems on our visit, but we certainly intend to return soon. If you happen to beat us to it, let us know about your experience! 

For More Information

Visit Sotto Sopra's website for more information about their menu features or to make a booking.

And, don't forget to give them a follow on Facebook or Instagram!

Details: 010 824 0777 | [email protected] | 21 Keyes Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg.

Anyone Can Win at Montecasino!

Don’t miss the Anyone Can Win monthly cash draw on Sunday, 01 March 2020 and the draw for the magnificent trip to Italy valued at R200 000 on Sunday, 29 March 2020.

The latest draw saw three lucky winners go home with a fabulous R15 000 each! Just imagine – this could’ve been you! Get into the running by simply accumulating receipts to the value of R500 at any of Montecasino’s restaurants, stores, bars, theatres, movies, hotels or entertainment facilities. Each R500 will get you one entry into the monthly cash draws! Yes, you too CAN win cash, a trip to Italy or a Ferrari in the Anyone Can Win promotion!

Montecasino

The Rocky Horror Show is Back by Popular Demand

Pieter Toerien and Howard Panter present Richard O’Brien’s Rocky Horror Show from Friday, 17 January 2020 to Sunday, 01 March 2020! It’s a guaranteed party, which famously combines science-fiction, horror, comedy and music while encouraging audience participation which means, of course, getting dressed in the most outrageous fancy dress! Let’s do the time warp again! Tickets are from R100 - R500 excluding your Rewards discount.

Rocky Horror Show

Let André Hypnotise You 

Feel like laughing until your sides hurt? Montecasino has the perfect answer! After an unprecedented 28 years in the industry, this will be the last time Joburg audiences will be able to enjoy André in action as he presents his André The Hilarious Hypnotist Farewell Tour until Sunday, 23 February 2020. Catch him live at Pieter Toerien’s Main Theatre – don’t miss out!

Andre The Hilarious Hypnotist

Here’s To Simon & Garfunkel

Fall in love with Simon & Garfunkel all over again in this dynamic and uplifting musical journey through more than 20 classic hits! That’s right, Here’s to You, The Simon & Garfunkel Songbook, is back by popular demand until Sunday, 08 March 2020. Catch the eight talented musicians who all play musical instruments at the Pieter Toerien Theatre!

Montecasino

[email protected] Montecasino

Check out the list of nail-biting, heart-wrenching, thought-provoking, hilariously funny blockbusters releasing at [email protected] Montecasino during February and March:

kids movies

Lighthouse Family in SA for the First Time

British musical duo, Lighthouse Family will be touring South Africa in March for the very first time – catch them at the Teatro from Friday, 20 March 2020 to Saturday, 21 March 2020! Take a trip down Memory Lane with their smash hits Raincloud, I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be, High, Lifted and many more! Tickets are from R630 to R970 per person, excluding your Rewards discount. Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime concert!

Montecasino

3SIXTY Is Where The Vibe Is

This trendy night spot in the heart of the action in Gauteng’s premier entertainment destination brings local live music to the stage every Friday and Saturday night, served along with 3SIXTY’s now-famous bespoke cocktail menu, exceptional selection of meals and sharing options, dancing, beautiful people and more.

Montecasino

For More Information

For more information about all the festivities at Montecasino, visit www.tsogosun.com/montecasino.

You can also contact them on 011 510 7000 or [email protected].

Don’t forget to like and follow them on Facebook and Twitter for the latest news, offers, events and more.

Eastgate Shopping Mall

Eastgate first opened in 1979. Since then it has undergone renovation, reconstruction and expansion to bring you an even better retail experience. This mega mall now houses over 300 stores, many of which are branded fashion emporiums. Eastgate is known for having something for every kind of shopper - from the kiddies to busy moms and dads, teens, young adults and even grandma. They pride themselves on being a lifestyle hub in Bedfordview, offering an array of restaurants, clothing stores, homeware and boutique shops.

Eating at Eastgate

Eastgate boasts an impressive food court. Whether you are in the mood for fast food, oven-fired vegan pizza or gourmet tjips, the food court is sure to have something to curb your cravings. While it's almost impossible to pick a favourite, we have to give a special nod to Primi. Their outdoor deck overlooks the Bedfordview suburb, making it the perfect place to chill out with friends or for a Friday night date. Plus, Primi's pizzas are made to perfection - a thin base, just the right amount of Napoletana sauce and the freshest toppings. Their cocktails are pretty good, too.

For kiddie-friendly options, pop into Mantovani's or Mozambik. Mantovani's is the ideal place to take the family out to dinner. Their Half-Price Pizza Tuesdays are famous for being crowd pleasers, as are their steaks and selection of wines. Mozambik offers something a little different - an Afro-Porto fusion of flavours with a dedicated kiddies menu and play area. What more could you ask for?

Click here to read our full article on dining out at Eastgate.

Eastgate

Photo credit: https://www.yomzansi.com/

Shopping

You could well and truly get lost at Eastgate Shopping Mall. Next time you feel the shopping spree itch, head on over to check out their variety of department stores, fashion boutiques and homeware emporiums. Our must-visit fashion store at the centre is H&M. This store stretches on for what feels like forever, displaying aisle upon aisle of trendy fashion staples for work and play.

When it comes to home and interior, you are spoiled for choice. Shop around at Coricraft, House & Home, Carrol Boyes and Mr Price Home for all your decorating needs.

Lastly, for good old grocery shopping, roll your trolley into Checkers Hyperama, Woolworths or Game. These supermarkets are great for Christmas shopping or month end grocery dashes. The queues can be quite hectic, but you can always pop into the Lindt chocolate shop for a special treat afterwards.

Eastgate

Entertainment

Eastgate knows the meaning of bigger is better and more is more. This is more than just a shopping mall, it's a hive of entertainment for all ages. The kids can have their fill of fun at The Fun Company arcade. With tons of games, bowling and snooker, this is a paradise for kids.

Right opposite the arcade, you will find Hamley's toy store. Let the kids be entertained by the princesses, clowns and giant teddy bears. The Hamley's train also makes its way through the mall every half an hour. Never again will a child cry crocodile tears over having to go shopping with mom or dad!

Older kids can catch the latest movies at Ster-Kinekor's IMAX Theatres. Featuring 10 cinemas, this is one of Ster-Kinekor's largest movie houses. Luxury cinema seating and a Pizza Hut menu to order adds to the experience. Click here to see Ster-Kinekor's latest blockbuster offerings at Eastgate.

Bedford Centre

Believe it or not, Bedford Centre is even older than Eastgate! Originally developed in the early 1970s, Bedford Centre underwent massive reconstruction in 2006. Bringing shoppers the ultra-chic, European-inspired Bedford Piazza, this expansion saw the mall become a premium retail and restaurant destination. Featuring 62 000 square meters of retail space with 170 stores, numerous delectable eateries, a Planet Fitness Mega Club and two pristine cinema houses, Bedford Centre is a fine choice for local shoppers and visitors.

Fine Dining at Bedford Centre

Bedford Centre puts a classy spin on the idea of a mall food court. Surrounding the open air piazza, these restaurants offer cuisines ranging from Greek and Italian to Mexican and Portuguese. So, whether you are looking for a decadent slice of cake, a tequila party or a classic date-night restaurant, Bedford Centre should have something right up your alley.

On the east side of the mall there are also a number of takeaway and family-oriented eateries. If you visit only one, we recommend Chevy Lane. A retro-inspired diner, complete with chequered tiles, Chevy replicas and pinball machines. This milkshake and burger joint provides good food, entertainment and a vibe unlike any other. Grown ups can take some time out at the adjoining Hollywood Detour Bar which has an incredible view of the suburb, while kids are sure to be delighted by the props, costumes and colourful treats on offer.

Bedford Centre

Retail Therapy

The greatest thing about Bedford Centre is that you can shop in relative peace for most of the year. While it does tend to get a little mad around the holidays, off-peak time is a shopaholics dream. You can easily have an entire shopping trip at the centre without becoming overwhelmed by crowds or noise.

Bedford Centre is home to all the good oldies when it comes to clothing and fashion. Edgars, Pick n Pay Clothing, Mr Price, Cotton On and Foschini are all located on the ground level. Hop from one store to the next to find that perfect outfit or accessory. Plus, these stores often have seasonal sales, so you can score a number of bargains in one shopping trip.

For interesting curio stores and geeky havens, visit Heroes of Games and Comics. This quirky store greets you with Harry Potter memorabilia displays, Marvel figurines and DC branded hoodies. It's the perfect place to pick up a gift for a fanatic friend. Just across it, you will find Planes, Trains and Automobiles - a specialised hobby store, offering repairs to radio controlled planes, cars and boats. All your comic, craft and curio need are sorted!

Click here for a full rundown of the exciting retail options at Bedford Centre.

Bedford Centre

Family Fun

Bedford Centre makes up for its seemingly small stature with tons of fun entertainment for the whole family. With two prestige cinema complexes, ArtJamming, VR Gaming and a Gravity Jump Centre, you and the kids will never be bored here. That's why during school holidays, this is a kiddies playground.

However, adults haven't been forgotten. Bedford Centre's Exclusive Books caters to the bookworms and scribes, while the outdoor piazza often hosts fun runs and Halloween dress up parties for the whole family. Additionally, there is a baby grand piano just outside Foschini which often sees musicians perform impromptu concerts.

The Verdict 

Eastgate Shopping Mall and Bedford Centre each offer their own special retail and entertainment experiences. Visit them both to pick your favourite, or hop between the two to make the most of the Bedfordview retail mile.

Happy Shopping! 

Bedford Steakhouse est. 1972

Before it was known as Bennigan's restaurant, this family-friendly steakhouse was called Bedford Steakhouse. Established in 1972 by Costa Paizes, Bedford Steakhouse was well known for its great steaks and American-style dining experience. Housed at Bedford Centre, the steakhouse was a firm family favourite for many years.

Bennigan's

But, as all things must, Bedford Steakhouse underwent a change. Becoming Bennigan's Restaurant, this eatery upped the stakes by offering a greater wine selection, top quality meats and in-house desserts on their menu. In 2016, Bennigan's also made a move from Bedfordview to the suburb of Kensington. However, their food ethos has stayed true to the original Bedford Steakhouse. With the same emphasis on sourcing the best ingredients and produce directly from the farmers themselves, Bennigan's brings perfect products straight to the table for the customer to enjoy.

The restaurant is still going strong 47 years later. In a world of takeout chains, fast food and shopping mall dining culture, Bennigan's stands out among the rest.

Bennigans

Fancy Fusion

You can't miss Bennigan's Restaurant. Situated on Langermann Drive, the steakhouse welcomes you from all directions. The sprawling outdoor deck adorned with fairy lights and greenery catches your attention, as it suggests an air of modern fine dining. Upon entry you will find an eclectic mix of American ranch style, Italian chic and South African influences in the decor. The furniture and lighting are sophisticated without being intimidating. There is, of course, a family-friendly element too, so the kids will feel right at home. While the restaurant does overlook the bustling street below, it is removed from the chaos. The vibe is relaxed and welcoming. This is the perfect place for a special family dinner or date night.

Bennigan's also has a dedicated kids play area to keep the 'Bennikids' entertained. With slides, play mats and a colouring station, this is a little one's dream. The restaurant is also working on a special children's menu to fill hungry bellies with the best they have to offer. So, next time the family beg to go out for dinner, don't head for the nearest fast food franchise or run-of-the-mill steakhouse, because Bennigan's awaits.

Fine Wine, Prime Cuts and Mississippi Mud Pie 

Bennigan's menu combines the essence of American steakhouse cuisine with modern South African touches. For starters, we recommend the spicy buffalo wings. Always a crowd pleaser, the chicken wings are basted in Benningan's secret spicy sauce, covered in sesame seeds and chili mayo. However, if you want something a little more indulgent, try out their salmon tartare, beef carpaccio or snails paree. Paired with one of the restaurant's fine wines, these European classics go down a treat.

Onto the mains. Benningan's is known for its premium A-grade beef, so it would be a shame not to sample a fillet, rump or sirloin steak. From a 200g fillet to a 600g T-bone, Bennigan's has a steak to suit any appetite. Order yours plain, basted or pepper crusted with a side of mashed or baked potato, onion straws, fries or seasonal veg. Lastly, add a sauce to bring all the flavours together. Your options - monkey gland, Bearnaise, creamy peppercorn, mushroom, garlic or cheese.

Bennigans

If you aren't a steak fanatic, fear not. Bennigan's has a variety of other delectable mains to choose from. Think lamb shank, oxtail stew, slow-roasted pork belly, baby back ribs and seared salmon. Vegetarian options are slim on this menu. However, veggie lovers should delight over the Butternut Pansotti - fresh parcels of pasta filled with butternut and cheese, topped with traditional napolitana sauce. Or, you can tuck into a platter of halloumi, fried mushrooms, creamed spinach and grilled tomato.

Finally, dessert. Bennigan's in-house made American diner inspired puds are all out indulgent. Their house specialty salted caramel brownie is to die for, but it's their Mississippi Mud Pie which has earned them veritable fame. Liqueur infused chocolate ice cream cake, with a biscuit base, served with chocolate fudge sauce and fresh cream. Goodbye diet, here we come!

Craft Bar 

Bennigan's doesn't only cater to the wine drinkers. They also have a great selection of craft gin, beer and cocktails at their bar. We like the sound of a cranberry and thyme craft gin - saffron infused gin, with cranberry syrup, thyme and Fever Tree tonic. Had a little too much to drink? Bennigan's Blood Mary is the best you will ever have. Made with a secret blend of spices, this little cocktail is a must-try.

For more information

Visit their website for more information, or give them a follow on social media:

Facebook - facebook.com/bennigansrestaurant

Contact them on 011 615 1658 or via email at [email protected]

Details: 81 Langermann Drive, Kensington, Johannesburg.

Have you been to Bennigan's before? Let us know about your experience. 

What Is It?

Come and chill out with friends and family alongside the Vaal River this September. Celebrate the spring season and all its wonders  with champagne and wine on open grass. At The River Market you will find your favorite beauticians, designers, arts and crafters, photographers, as well as great food and beverage offerings.

The River Market gives you a day to get your nails done or have a well-deserved back massage. You can also buy top quality goods from local designers and get a variety of freshly made artisan foods and treats. But that's not all, you can sip cocktails, wine and champagne on a tranquil boat ride across the Vaal. Plus, you and your friends can enjoy live music from local artists overlooking the river. The River Market is the best place to spend a Saturday with friends and family, so don't miss out!

When Is It?

Saturday, 28 September 2019 at 10:00.

Where Is It?

Shaw Moya, Plot 110 Windsor Road, Kaalplaats, Vanderbijlpark, Gauteng.

How Much Is It?

Tickets cost between R15 - R35 per person. Get yours online via Webtickets.

For more information

Visit their Facebook page for more information - facebook.com/orchideventsandentertainment

Or, contact them on 063 673 2163 / [email protected]

What Is It?

Learn the art of mixology with the Night School: The Monthly Mixology Masterclass as they bring you the foundation techniques to kick-start your way to being the cocktail connoisseur.

The event will be taking place at the fabulous The Course Sandton. So you can bring the famly or perhaps the team for team building.

Find the steps to your ultimate concoction!

When Is It?

Wednesday, 31 July 2019 at 17:30

Where Is It?

The Course, Rivonia Road & West Street, Sandton, Johannesburg, Gauteng.

How Much Is It?

Tickets are R577 per person, get your tickets Here.

For More Information

For more information about this event, visit Here.

What Is It?

Make of the most of Friday's in the city by winding down for the weekend with a cosmopolitan experience at The Maslow Hotel in Sandton. Every Friday evening until the end of April, guests will be tickled pink with innovative gin-inspired cocktails. The cocktails are expertly prepared at The Maslow’s Lacuna Bar, which has become a social hot spot for after-work drinks and lazy sundowners. The star of the sun downers’ show on The Maslow’s Pink Fridays is Musgrave Gin – a premium award-winning gin that acknowledges the flavours and history of Africa and its ancient spice route. There will also be a selection of draught and bottled beer, handpicked wines, light meals and sushi served inside or outside on the terrace. Chilling out at poolside within the hotel’s tranquil oasis garden is the perfect way to welcome the weekend. Don't miss out!

When Is It?

This exciting experience will be taking place on the following dates: 

Where Is It?

The Maslow Hotel, 146 Rivonia Road, Sandton, Johannesburg.

How Much Is It?

Entry to the venue is free. The beautifully prepared cocktails cost from R75 to R80 each. 

For More Information

For more information about this event, visit The Maslow Sandton's Facebook page.

You can contact The Maslow Sandton on 010 226 4600[email protected] or visit their website at www.suninternational.com.

There's nothing more relaxing and exciting than a beach holiday. Imagine lazy afternoons getting a little bronzed, strolling down the shore, watching the crashing waves and sipping on piña coladas. Sounds like the life, doesn't it? Enjoy a slice of paradise and book a trip to one of these beach destinations:

The Best Of Bali

Sea, surf and smiles – this is what you can expect when escaping to the unique destination of Bali. Beautiful beaches provide blissful days of swimming, snorkelling and sun tanning before the sun sets, and when the sun sets, the exciting nightlife begins. Let's take a look at some of its attractions and activities.

flight centre

Balangan Beach

Enclosed within cliff faces and long stretches of bush and palm trees, Balangan Beach is in the Ungasan Village and boasts a number of bars, has plenty of umbrellas for hire and pretty good surf breaks. With roughly 200m of white sand and warm seas, it’s a great place to unwind and catch a few rays.

Beeping Scooters

Many of the Balinese locals own scooters and may use them to transport their families. Town centres are filled with hundreds of scooters hooting away, whether they are letting someone know they're about to overtake them or sometimes just for fun! This is an experience you must try at least once in your life.

Visit The Bamboo Bar

This popular, airy hangout in Kuta serves up delicious seafood, as well as a range of cocktails and, of course, Bintang Beer. The entire venue is made of bamboo, which is not only environmentally friendly but also adds to the island ambience. So, what are you waiting for? Throw on your sarong and slops and head to this unique bar for a few sundowners.

Five Bali Night Markets Not To Miss

If there is one thing you need to experience while in Bali, it's the bustling night markets, which always have something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for the perfect souvenir to take home, need a few gifts to take home for family and friends, some new flip flops and a stylish sarong to add a little style to your beach look, or you simply want to indulge in some authentic local Balinese street food, you’ll find it all at a night market.

flight centre

Family Fun & Adventure In Mauritius

Complete with breathtaking beaches, swaying palm trees and luxurious hotels, the island of Mauritius is a popular island escape for couples seeking romance, or families looking to get away for some fun and adventure. Of course, there are plenty of beaches to explore, pristine parks to visit and loads of street food to sample but there are also a number of unique experiences to be had in beautiful Mauritius. Take your pick from skydiving, kite surfing, or even exploring the tea route. Adventure waits around every corner.

flight centre

Live Like a Local in Zanzibar! 

Zanzibar comes with everything you would expect from an idyllic island: pristine beaches, beautiful resorts and endless blue skies and seas. But what sets it apart from other tropical destinations are the surprises just waiting to be discovered off the well-trodden tourist route. To make the most of your trip, here are a few useful Zanzibar #hacks for you to suss out. From hidden attractions and great spots to eat like a local to experiencing the culture, as well as money-saving tips, Flight Centre has you covered.

flight centre

For More Information

For more information on Flight Centre, click here.

For a former Capetonian, the vibey Gleneagles Road in Greenside is a real treat. Why, you ask? Well, you see, Cape Town residents delight in having eateries of all kinds jam-packed on the same street so you don’t have to get in your car and drive around from one part of town to the other to satisfy your foodie cravings.

One of the newest additions to this strip, The Artisan, is a social and trendy restaurant and bar that’s just the place to sip on something refreshing after a long day of work, enjoy a relaxed dinner and a couple cocktails with good friends, or simply tuck into a simple breakfast after your morning cycle. I popped in on a Friday night for a light dinner with my boyfriend, and we’re ever so glad that we finally got around to trying this new spot!

We arrived in the early evening and were both instantly impressed by the eclectic and modern decor — a combination of brick and dark, painted walls, chalkboards announcing the tantalising light meals and snack platters, and handcrafted wooden light fixtures. That night the place was packed, and the atmosphere was sophisticated and vibey.

FotorCreated

My boyfriend and I took a seat at a high table in the courtyard out back. This small and cosy area is comfortable and probably quieter than inside. Our friendly waiter accompanied by Matt, one of the owners, quickly attended to us and made some drinks suggestions before letting us look through the extensive menu of simple, uncomplicated light meals and a super-impressive list of drinks.

Food options were mainly salads, gourmet sandwiches and burgers, as well as a number of finger foods, including jalapeño poppers, nachos, sliders, kebabs and potato skins. You’re even given the option of building your own snack platter.

On the drinks side, you can expect a pretty cool list of cocktails reminiscent of the 1920s. Think classic concoctions like an Old-Fashioned or Gin Martini. There were also more adventurous choices like the Sidecar to Work (a premium brandy cocktail enhanced with vanilla maple syrup and lemon) and the Gentlemen’s Jack (a Jack Daniel's blend with Triple Sec and Coke). Also on offer are a number of local craft beers that are changed up every month. On Matt’s recommendation, I ordered the Sidecar to Work, while my boyfriend ordered a beer.

FotorCreated2

For starters, we decided on the Doritos jalapeño poppers, a crunchy twist on the beloved chilli poppers. They arrived quickly and were delicious! For mains, we chose the beef burger and chips and the chicken nachos to share, which also reached our table in good time. The burger was succulent and juicy and the potato chips on the side were fantastic. The nachos were top-notch — the kind you’d expect at a traditional Mexican restaurant, just better and probably cheesier too (yum!).

To end off our meal, we thought we'd try one more cocktail each. I opted for a Caipirinha and my boyfriend had the Old-Fashioned. Both were beautifully presented and wonderfully refreshing. I’ll certainly be back to try some of their other colourful concoctions, such as the Pear Pressure Mojito, Cinnamon Berry Crush and Peppermint Crisp —  I mean, how divine do those drinks sound?

Both my dining companion and I had a great experience at The Artisan and if you enjoy all things artisanal, you’ll love this place! The food is deliciously original, the service enthusiastic, and the concept is trendy and exciting. Oh, and whiskey drinkers take note: on the first Wednesday of every month, The Artisan hosts a whiskey-tasting evening. You can find out more about that on their Facebook page. Enjoy!

By Candice May

Ratz Bar

One of the best spots to get your drink on in old town would be Ratz Bar. This is a prime cocktail spot too – that's why they're on this list, right? One of the most sought-after designer drinks at Ratz would be the Ratz Poison which is made up of Bacardi, Captain Morgan, Cane, cherry lemonade, pineapple juice and a Stroh float.

Six Cocktails

If you're after interesting shooters and mixed drinks then Six Cocktails is your kind of dig. One of our favourites would be the Absent Without Leave which consists of apple and lemon infused Absinthe. Live a little!

La Santa Muerte

We love La Santa Muerte so much that we can't choose which cocktail of their's we should praise more. My dear, do yourself a favour and go grab yourself one el Hefe and one frozen margarita... whatever happens after that is your business – just make sure to send us photos.

cocktails

Jo'Anna Melt Bar

For a very long time, the Jo'annnna Melt Bar has seen the suburb of Melville through the good and the bad times. This drinking hole has put its fair amount of smiles on plenty faces. The reason? Its cocktails, of course. Our top pick would be the apricot and ginger siesta which contains silver tequila, apricot extract, fresh lime juice, aromatic bitters and ginger ale.

Liquid Blue

If you ever find yourself in Melville over a weekend or party night then pull in to Liquid Blue. Go straight to the bar and say "I would like an apple and rum fondue jar, please." Don't forget the word please. This drink will blow your mind. It's got three types of Bacardi, lemon juice, homemade chocolate fondue syrup and sour apple topped with an apple fan.

Mootee Bar

Mootee Bar was named as one of the top ten new international cocktail bars for 2018. Their menu is unlike any other Melville restaurant. Each cocktail is inspired by an African folk story and has a visual representation of taste, designed by artist Jared Hurwitz. With 120 seats, an outside rooftop deck, open air alley seating and a private lounge, Mootee Bar is a must-visit Melville venue. Try out their milktart brandy, sparkling Umqombothi or the crystal clear brandy and coke.

Cocktails

Hell's Kitchen

Hell's Kitchen is Melville's very own 1920's inspired speakeasy. Their menu specialty is whiskey, but they offer crafty G&T's and their very own HK Lager drafts as well.

Love Me So

Situated on Melville's fourth avenue, Love Me So offers something truly unique. This Asian-fusion ramen bar opened its doors in 2017. Their cocktail menu is divided into classic tipples and Asian flavour inspired drinks. We recommend the Hidden Dragon, which consists of fresh basil, tequila, lemon, lime and pineapple.

By Shawn Greyling

What Is It?

What's the best way to relax and take in all the splendour that the city has to offer during summer? Well, how does sipping on cocktails on the pool deck, chilling to smooth, laid back music and watching the sun set sounds? Pretty good, right? If you agree with us, then be sure not to miss out on Radisson Blu Hotel Sandton's Summer Sunsets, every Friday evening. It's the perfect opportunity to wind down, chill out, enjoy the good vibes and take on some breathtaking views.

When Is It?

Every Friday until 26 April 2019 from 16:00.

Where Is It?

Radisson Blu Hotel Sandton, corner Daisy and Rivonia Street, Johannesburg.

How Much Is It?

Entry is free, just need to pay for your drinks and food bill.

For More Information

For more information about this event, visit Radisson Blu Hotel Sandton on Facebook

What Is It?

Super Cool Saturdays at The Living Room are all about tasty cocktails and sundowners, whilst immersing your senses in their rooftop jungle,  the finest music, and one of the best views in the city! This edition partners up with Devil's Peak Gin and Bloedlemoen Gin for the tastiest drinks in their last edition of 2018.

On the lineup:

When Is It?

Saturday, 29 December 2018 from 11:00

Where Is It?

The Living Room, 20 Kruger Street, City and Suburban, Johannesburg

How Much Is It?

Ticket prices start from R50 per person (excluding R5 per ticket fee) and range depending on the package. Tickets can be purchased here.

For More Information?

For more information visit Quicket or the Facebook page.

1. From working in advertising to starting up the world's most celebrated mixers and tonics brand, that's quite the career change. How did that come about?

Even though I was working in advertising, having started my first business while at university I’d always been keen to set up a company. I was exploring a number of opportunities across the food and beverage sector, one of which happened to be premium gin.

As a result, I was given Charles Rolls’ number by a mutual friend as he had recently had great success in turning around Plymouth Gin, a wonderful British gin brand. Fortunately for me, Charles agreed to meet for coffee and at that very first meeting the conversation turned quickly from gin to tonic. We had both noticed – from different ends of the spectrum – the fact that people were spending all this money on craft and local gins but when it came to the tonic, they had no choice but to drown their gin with a poor-quality mixer. Within an hour or two, we’d decided to become business partners but instead of gin, we were going to focus on tonic with one simple premise that still holds true to this day that if ¾ of your drink is the mixer, use the best.

2. What's in a name? Why Fever-Tree and not Tim's Awesome Boozy Mixers?

We considered a number of names, I must admit that Tim’s Awesome Boozy Mixers didn’t make our shortlist!

When we started to look into the history of tonic, our research took us to the British Library, where we learned that quinine, the core ingredient in tonic water, comes from the bark of the cinchona tree, colloquially referred to as the fever tree. Tonic water was invented as a way of getting a dose of quinine into British troops stationed in colonies all around the world in the 1820s. It was the only way of warding off malaria. Quinine is incredibly bitter, so the army would add sugar and water to literally help the medicine go down, hence creating the first Indian Tonic Water. The troops always had a ration of gin, so then they added gin to their tonic, and hence the G&T was born. The name is a nod to the importance of the fever tree.

Fever-Tree

3. Fever Tree tonic is available in 74 countries — how hard was it to get the product so well-regarded that it could be distributed on a global level?

We realised how important it was to get the endorsement from the trade. Without budgets for large advertising campaigns, we approached our marketing very differently to the large brands. We engaged with the bartenders, the gatekeepers to the all-important hotel, bar and restaurant business, and the chefs – people with real consumer influence. This is a great way of building a reputation, prestige and word of mouth but involved a lot of shoe leather!

Even as a small start-up, we also knew that this was an international opportunity. We were very keen to establish our first-mover advantage, which is very important in the drinks industry. We identified the US and Spain as key primary markets, due to their influence across the key wider spirits category. However, as we all know it is hard enough to get interest as a start-up in your own market, let alone an international one. But we were pretty persistent and determined, using every contact we could and targeting the key bartenders and chefs as we had done in the UK. Of course, this  was not without its challenges and involved a lot of budget air travel, but fast forward to 2018 and we are now in 74 markets, including here in South Africa, as well as being served in nine out of the world’s top 10 restaurants and named tonic of choice by Drinks International for the fourth consecutive year.

4. Do you have a personal favourite out of all the beverages or mixers that Fever-Tree produces?

Choosing a favourite would be like choosing between my four sons – it just isn’t possible! But I’m really enjoying our smoky ginger ale at the moment, which is made with three types of ginger and smoked applewood. Mixed with whisky, the combination tastes like a complex and sophisticated cocktail, but it’s just great whisky with ginger tailored perfectly to it, lots of ice and orange peel.

Fever-Tree

5. What makes Fever-Tree different from its competitors?

I think it comes down to quality and innovation. When creating Fever-Tree, the mixer category was dominated by a couple of multinational conglomerates that had become driven by manufacturing efficiency, rather than quality or flavour. For us, it was all about putting quality back into the category in every way possible – from the packaging, imagery, even style of serve but nowhere more so then the ingredients themselves. This resulted in a very different approach to product development with us delving into the history books to find the most authentic and highest quality ingredients we could, then going out into the field to track them down and spending time with specialist producers and experts to create our products. There’s no other company going to the lengths we do to source these fantastic ingredients.

The whole company is built on innovation. We’re constantly developing new mixers, new flavours, new ideas and in doing so, creating an array of flavours to pair with the myriad of premium spirits out there. And while G&T consumption is still in strong, long-term global growth, the spirits category is not just about gin and the mixer category is not just about tonic. What’s so exciting is that we’ve only scratched the surface!

6. You've become known as quite the business jet-setter. Where are some of the most interesting places you've visited as CEO of Fever-Tree?

Just months after meeting for the first time, Charles and I set off on a crusade that can sound more like an Indiana Jones escapade than the quest for a refreshing drink, and in that time we have both been fortunate enough to travel to some of the most exotic, remote and beautiful places, but also some very dangerous places, none more so than the eastern Democratic of Congo where we source our quinine from.

It’s always been about finding the highest quality, naturally sourced ingredients, and this really has taken me to every corner of the globe. As an example, our ginger beers and ginger ales contain a combination of three different types of ginger from three different countries.

Whether it’s our fresh green ginger from Ivory Coast, Cochin ginger from India, our lemon from  Sicily or handpicked elderflowers from Gloucestershire, one of the most rewarding aspects of our travel has been learning about the ingredients and meeting the people on the ground who produce them for us. And the journey continues.

Fever-Tree

7. How does the South African mixer market compare to Europe and Northern America?

The same trends that drove the G&T revolution in the United Kingdom are beginning to emerge in South Africa, which we’re really excited about. There’s a real ‘gin explosion’ in South Africa with the emergence of an abundance of craft and local gin brands, as well as more established premium brands becoming ever more present. We’re already seeing some great opportunities for co-promotional activity both in retail but also across hotel, bars and restaurants and we believe there is a significant opportunity to increase our footprint and visibility across South Africa, capitalising on this revival of simple, long mixed drinks such as the gin and tonic.

8. Have you checked out the local bar and mixology scene? If so, do you have a favourite? And have you been to Mootee Bar in Melville?

I haven’t had the pleasure yet, but I’m keen to get out and about on my current visit to sample some of the fantastic local gins – mixed with a Fever-Tree tonic of course!

Fever-Tree

By Shawn Greyling

What Is It?

Not going to the beach this December? Well, don't you worry! Silverstar is bringing the beach to you with their Beach Festival 2018! This annual event sees the square transformed into a holiday paradise right on your doorstep. The sandy amusement park will have beach fun for the kids, refreshing sunset cocktails for adults, sunsational food specials and live entertainment to get you into the summer groove. And best of all, you don't have to trek down to the coast for the wonderful feeling of sea sand between your toes! Don’t miss out on this ‘staycation’ fun.

When Is It?

Thursday, 13 December 2018 - Sunday, 6 January 2019 from 10:00 – 22:00 daily except Christmas Day (closed on 25 December 2018).

Where Is It?

The Square at Silverstar, R28, Muldersdrift

How Much Is It?

Entrance is FREE!

For More Information

For more information about this event, visit www.tsogosun.com