Full marks for at­mos­phere

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - GOODTO DO - WENDYL MARTIN

AF­TER be­ing in­tro­duced to this gem a few weeks ago by an in­ter­vie­wee vic­tim, I can now ad­mit be­ing a lit­tle be­sot­ted with &Union, a wine and beer bar in a church base­ment.

Due to a re­cent cof­fee binge, their R9.50 amer­i­canos have be­come a caf­feine shot in my many hours of need, such as those 6pm tele­phone in­ter­views with an Amer­i­can artist or a pre-work pickme-up af­ter a busy evening.

Last week, I sat down with a col­league to what I reckon is a good break­fast deal.

The Rod’s Full House con­sists of free-range poached eggs on toasted cia­batta topped with ba­con and boerenkaas cheese. This is served with an or­ganic cof­fee of your choice and a glass of orange juice.

My col­league de­scribed the ba­con as flavour­ful, cured and smokey. The cheese, he felt, was mild and had to be more ma­ture to com­ple­ment the dish. He said the eggs were de­li­cious and had a “lovely yel­low colour”.

He sug­gested rocket as a gar­nish with the meal.

I, how­ever, was a lit­tle more sat­is­fied with the food.

The eggs were poached to my lik­ing. The cof­fee I chose was the Or­ganic Meia de Leite – a strong brew with a de­li­cious por­tion of milk. But noth­ing is per­fect; as fresh and pulpy as the juice was, it was warm… per­haps due to the heat of the day at their out­door ta­bles.

And my worst break­fast eat­ing fear reared its head – food served on a chop­ping board. This seems to be some­thing hap­pen­ing in a few places, but no more pleas­ing.

Also, a few ta­ble-top condi­ments would be great.

There are quite a few other break­fast op­tions to try out. Some­thing dif­fer­ent for the pas­try lovers is the Morn­ing Glory – a crois­sant with ba­con and peanut but­ter. The menu sug­gests wash­ing this down, in child-like fash­ion, with a glass of milk.

Note that &Union’s break­fasts will be avail­able only for a few more weeks and will end later this month or early next year.

Not be­ing much of a beer or wine drinker, for me, &Union goes be­yond these; from be­ing just a com­fort­able, open-air, city cen­tre spot for artist in­ter­views, to a strong perk of Java for a boost and that late-night cof­fee choice with great at­mos­phere and peo­ple. I also just loved the way the cashier asked me if I would like my cof­fee white with milk or black like him.

From the smell of grilling hot dogs at lunchtime, to fan­tasies of play­ing ping pong in their court­yard and a per­fect perk un­der the stars, &Union just may be my win­ner for the year – on at­mos­phere, at least. wendyl.martin@inl.co.za Twit­ter: @Wendyl­martin

PIC­TURE: THOMAS HOLDER

FULL HOUSE: &Union on Bree Street spe­cialises in craft beer and wine. They also serve break­fast.

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