Johannesburg: Junipa’s

By Georgina Crouth

The combination of scrumptious baked goodies, bistro food and a kid-friendly vibe ensure that Junipa’s in Bryanston is a treat for the entire family.

Physical Address: Hobart Grove centre, cnr Hobart and Grosvenor roads, Bryanston.

Open seven days a week. Call 011-706-2387 or visit www.junipas.co.za.

THE PLACE

After more than a decade in the business of baking, Junipa’s has moved into a larger space to accommodate a bistro, a coffee roastery and bakery. The new light-drenched space is enhanced with unplastered facebrick and greypainted walls, funky framed art, a modern chandelier, bench seating and chairs upholstered in hessian coffee sacks. Outside, lavender in pots surround a cool and casual terraced seating area featuring a fountain. This is the place to go for fresh out-of-the-oven croissants, bread, muffins and cakes. The sociable pizza oven, at which kiddies get to create their own dishes, is a clever touch.

THE PEOPLE 

Julian and Andrea Platt’s business has come a long way since an afternoon tea in 1997 when Julian raided his pantry to bake chocolate chip cookies for friends. Soon, word of mouth spread and the orders started flowing in. They found premises at the Hobart Centre fuel station, where “people would follow their noses and enquire about our business”, says Julian. Chocolate chip cookies and muffins soon turned to brownies, pastries and sandwiches and even bigger orders came in. Today the operation produces 10 000 muffins a day and supplies its products to large coffee chains, hotels and airlines.

THE FOOD 

The focus is on wholesome and quality ingredients like real butter, stoneground flour and fresh produce. Portions are big, but as a family-friendly venue a number of dishes are available as smaller portions for kids. Start your day with crème brÛlée French toast, buckwheat pancakes and coffee selected from a range of fresh brews, or wait for lunch’s more substantial fare such as steak, quiche, Scottish salmon or pasta. Don’t leave without sampling one of their famous brownies or croissant bread and butter pudding.

X-FACTORS 

Great pastry and fresh coffee make life all the more worth living and Junipa’s does both superbly. Chef Jean-Pierre Smith nurses his eight-year-old sourdough culture in a special fermentation fridge and takes great pride in his bread. Coffee cupping talks are also on the horizon, which will take guests “from the tree to the cup”.

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