Residents of Cape Town take their breakfasts and brunches very seriously, so much so that there are literally hundreds of coffee shops and restaurants across the city that serve up remarkable morning meals.
Cafe, Restaurant, Contemporary, $$$
Just next door to Origin is Loading Bay. This fascinating space mixes café and clothes shop, allowing customers to enjoy a perfectly brewed coffee while perusing clothing brands, such as ACNE and Naked & Famous Denim. The Loading Bay serves up a range of meals, including the popular “Breakfast Burger,” which consists of bacon, egg, cheese, and grilled banana all served on a brioche bun. If you’re looking for something lighter, there are a range delectable egg dishes and salads also on offer.
Origin was one of the first coffee specialists in the city, and they’ve barely missed a beat since opening back in 2006. They are first and foremost a coffee-lovers haven, and their expert baristas serve up dozens of coffees in various forms. But don’t overlook their exotic teas and extensive breakfast menu. The breakfast menu offers everything from small bites through to brunch-worthy meals, and the beautiful brick building in Cape Town’s Waterkant is the perfect backdrop to a great morning out.
This popular bakery is packed full of delectable goods baked fresh each day, and in recent years they’ve expanded to include several branches dotted across the province. They pair their range of pastries and breakfast options with high quality coffees, and service is prompt and efficient. Their various locations make them a good quality, cost-effective option throughout the city.
Clarkes Cheeseburger | Courtesy Clarkes Bar & Dining Room
Clarkes on Cape Town’s trendy Bree Street changes moods and crowds depending on the time of day, but early mornings are great for quality breakfasts in a laid-back diner-like setting. They bake their own bread and use only the freshest ingredients to cook up a variety of all-day breakfast options. The menu is simple but diverse, and the coffee is always on point, making this an ideal place in which to start a day in the Cape Town Inner City.
The quirky, homely café is a firm favorite in Cape Town’s Southern Suburbs. They take a simple and honest approach to their food and décor, and though it gets busy at peak times, it still somehow remains tranquil and enjoyable. Starlings specialize in serving up every kind of brunch eggs available, with locally sourced ingredients. They are also vegan, veggie, and diet friendly. During the week it’s a popular hangout for suburban freelancers, but come the weekend the atmosphere shifts to a family-friendly one, perfect for a quick breakfast or a longer, lazier brunch.
The best bakery in Cape Town does more than just perfect pastries and decadent doughsants (themed donuts made with croissant pasty). They also have an extensive breakfast and lunch menu that will satisfy all taste buds. The original Bree Street branch pulsates throughout the week, with a hatch to the street for those who want a quick breakfast on the go. The newer Green Point branch is replicating the success of the first, and has taken some of the pressure off the popular inner city branch.
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Hemelhuijs is more than just a breakfast or brunch spot, though its early morning meals are certainly what’s got most tongues wagging about this Waterkant establishment. The breakfast menu includes fresh juices, unique coffees, and exotic teas, along with all-day breakfasts. Breakfast options include everything from salted butter and preserve on toast to fresh fruit and a selection of creatively cooked breakfast options.
Kleinsky’s is another local favorite that’s spread from Sea Point to the CBD. They specialize in delicious, fresh bagels and a range of toppings, but they’ll also whip up a perfect bagel-free breakfast or brunch with fresh juice or a high-quality cup of coffee. The laid-back, neighborhood bagel shop vibe at Kleinsky’s makes it a regular fixture on many Capetonian breakfast schedules.
Hotel Restaurant, Restaurant, Mediterranean, South African, Seafood, European, Vegetarian, $$$
Harveys at Winchester Mansions | John Hickey-Fry / Flickr
If you’re looking for a sophisticated brunch set to the sounds of soft jazz and a courtyard fountain, then head to Harveys Jazz Brunch on Sunday mornings. It’s situated in the Winchester Mansions on the picturesque Sea Point promenade and includes a complimentary newspaper and glass of refreshing bubbly upon arrival. There’s a range of delicious foods on offer, and though it’s one of the priciest brunches on offer in the city, you’ll leave feeling pampered and like royalty.
This fast-paced, vibrant coffee and breakfast spot has quickly become a local favorite in Cape Town. Now with two branches—one in Sea Point and another just off Bree Street—there’s no excuse not to give them a try. They do incredible breakfasts and brunches served fast and courteously. The Sea Point branch can get a bit manic on weekend mornings, so go early or prepare to wait.