Review: Borage Bistro

The epitome of the business lunch.

Hidden inside a massive glass skyscraper owned by one of South Africa’s biggest banking corporates, resides one of the cosiest, most beautiful little bistros, Borage Bistro. Set in the cold glass building, overwhelmed by cold banking fumes, creativity oozes and drips out of the well-oiled hinges from the bright glass doors of Borage. Don’t be fooled by the fancy business suites sipping wine and cappuccinos inside, Borage is cultural heartland when it comes to the menu. Be prepared to be treated, to have an experience, to feel like you’re in Gordon Ramsey/Jaime Oliver/Heston Blumenthal territory.

Apart from the gorgeous “simplistic meets homey” interior, Borage is a physically impressive space. From the solid glass wall illuminating the restaurant with lightto the  abnormally high ceilings,  your breath will be taken away with the feeling of a lush space. You are also awarded a full view into the kitchen, making the white chrome kitchen part of the restaurant rather than a dingy room in the back from where your food appears. I like knowing where my food comes from, it’s my way of holding the chefs in the pristine white jackets accountable. And accountable they most certainly are.

Besides a permanent menu boasting of salads, sarmies and soups, Borage also has a seasonal menu that is regularly changed. Yes, their toasted cheese is the best out there you can find, but the special menu is the stuff that you will tell your friends and family abroad about. In short, it’s a culinary experience.

My favourite dish on this special menu is the Pea Soup. And I know it’s something special because I normally detest peas. The creamy green soup is accompanied by black forest ham, knackwurst, pickled onion and a potato fondant. (No this is not your mother’s pea soup!) The dish, as all the dishes are, are thoroughly thought through in terms of flavours, textures and taste experiences. Another goodie is the fresh fish accompanied by pearl couscous, courgettes, peas, mint, rosa tomatoes, fine beans and sundries tomatoes that is perfectly pulled together by a rich tomato jus.

But I digress. The food is absolutely delicious and priced absolutely fair for the enjoyment you get out of it. Although most customers are nauseatingly corporate and well-dressed, Borage is surprisingly casual with some of the friendliest staff around. It’s a rare place where you can see both kitchen and restaurant staff take immense pride in their work, and really enjoy what they are doing. I’m almost jealous I’m not in there working with them.


General price: R120 for a meal and drink

Ambiance: It’s an experience.

Open: Monday-Saturday for breakfast and lunch, Thursday and Friday for dinner

For more info and exciting event visit Borage here

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