Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Eye on Life

Broad interest online magazine

Eat, Drink and Be Merry

Gorgeous Gawjus

Gawjus is the name of a relatively new coffee shop close to the corner of Main and Recreation Roads, Fish Hoek. As a proofreader, this phonetic spelling is eye-watering, and in fact put me off going in the first time I passed by. However, good sense prevailed and I put all my spelling prejudices behind me on Thursday, eager to try somewhere new and nearby. A friend and I had just walked 6km from the wetlands to Sunnycove and back, and refreshment called.

The vicinity of the Fish Hoek traffic lights is usually swept by an icy southeaster or blustery northwester and ‘attractive’ is not an adjective I connect with it. As we approached the entrance, we could see that the little outside tables under a sturdy umbrella were occupied and so didn’t have to weigh up whether we would sit inside or outside. It was a particularly gorgeous early Spring day, the wind being entirely absent, and as we went inside, the grime of the street became a distant memory. A carefully curated seating arrangement, decor and clever use of a tiny space transported us to a cosmopolitan cafe vibe, with window seating at little counters and a couple of tables for two – all occupied by the inevitable laptop workers. A bright young man greeted us, saw us eyeing the only free seats with hesitation, and directed us upstairs to the other seating area where he said he had two yellow chairs waiting for us.

Up we went, and again the counter space was occupied by a laptop, but there were the two yellow chairs, bright and cheerful as a sunny day. They were placed, together with the table, inside what was obviously a fitting room – two mirrors amplified our dishevelled post-walk appearance, and curtains were drawn aside to afford a view down to the ground floor. We were both able to sit with our backs to a mirror, so were able to avoid the sight of ourselves every time we looked up. Next to us, a selection of clothing was being hung on the rail, apparently just arrived together with the designer. We were served in the midst of all this activity without ever feeling we were in the way, and I am sure the clothing line will prove popular – go and take a look. There are some artworks for sale and a cottagey cupboard with unusual knick-knacks for gifts or own use.

The coffee was rich and smooth, no bitter aftertaste that is so common, the cinnamon twirl light and fragrant, and the sourdough chicken mayonnaise and pickle sandwich enough for two. It more than matched the offerings of some long-established eateries at half the price and twice the flavour, served with unobtrusive cheerfulness and enthusiasm. Sitting in a fitting room will definitely be our choice of seating again.

Such enterprises deserve our support. You won’t be disappointed.

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