A Ladies Lunch is not JUST lunch; it’s a rite, an institution, a ceremony. It’s those sacred hours where the girls get to discuss with abandon everything from celebrity gossip to politics to shoes, while sipping on cute drinks. It’s catch-up time, bonding time, screeching-with-laughter time, and it’s an event that most ladies want to stretch out leisurely over sunny afternoons. So where are the best spots for these celebratory get-togethers? With its range of fab restaurants, Melrose Arch would be a good place to start.
You don’t need to spend a fortune on a plane ticket to get a taste of France. All you have to do is gather the ladies and grab a table at PAUL on High Street. There’s a lovely variety of breakfasts, decadent French treats and pastries (think macarons, éclairs, crêpes and grille aux pommes), light meals, pastas and freshly squeezed fruit juices to choose from. And, of course, let’s not forget their selection of wines, MCCs and craft beers. What ladies lunch would be complete without bubbles? You can enjoy the Parisian ambience inside the café or lunch street-side in the sun.
Details: www.paul-bakeries.com | 010 020 3002 | Shop 010I3, Corner The High Street and Crescent
Drive, Melrose Arch, Johannesburg
Add some African flair to your brunch date with the ladies at the urban-chic Moyo Melrose Arch. Here, you and your girlfriends can enjoy a relaxed lunch out on the square, sipping on cocktails and catching up. As for the menu, it’s filled with a wide selection of African-inspired dishes such as the Klein Karoo Venison Potjie, Durban Lamb Curry and a variety of Kraal Grill meats – all Instagram-worthy! And for your entertainment, there’s traditional face painting for adults, as well as authentic African tunes and live bands.
There’s a reason why JB’s Corner is always bustling. Issa vibe. First there’s the good food – ranging from breakfasts and beach-body eating to burgers, pizzas, pastas, sushi, salads and gourmet sandwiches – and then there’s the extensive drinks menu. Coffees, teas, craft beer, cocktails, wine, bubbly… whatever the ladies are longing for will be served up with a smile. Depending on the weather you can either sit inside the beautifully decorated street café or dine alfresco for some fresh air and a little people watching. What else could you possibly need?
For the ultimate carb heaven, Jamie’s Italian is the place to book for moreish pastas and pizzas topped with all the good stuff. If you’re going with a group, order a range of dishes so you can all sample more than average, because sharing is caring, darlings. Situated on The High Street, you’ll again have your choice of indoor or outdoor dining, but if the weather’s good, we recommend making your ruckus outside with cocktails – way better lighting for the ‘Gram! Oh, four last words of advice: Molten Chocolate Praline Pudding.
Details: www.jamieoliver.com | 010 007 4646 | Shop 00513, Building 13, The High Street, Melrose
We love the laid-back vibe of Piza ē Vino; it’s kind of like being in someone’s cosy home, which makes it a great spot for both big tables of boisterous females or intimate lunches for you and your bestie. And it’s pretty simple to decide what to eat and drink – it’s called Piza ē Vino for a reason! Whether on the deck overlooking the Melrose Arch Piazza or smack bang in the middle of the indoor buzz, you’re guaranteed a great time here.
Maybe it’s the extravagantly extra-large wine glasses that make Tasha’s in Melrose Arch the ultimate ladies lunch go-to. Or maybe it’s the G&Ts. Oh, wait, maybe we love it because it makes us feel like we’re lunching on a piazza in Rome… Okay, so there’s loads of reasons why we love this branch of the successful restaurant chain, not least of which is the leisurely ambience that leaves you instantly relaxed and ready for an afternoon of indulgence.
Sometimes it’s hard to eat an entire main course between all the talking that goes on during a ladies lunch. If you can relate, we highly recommend going meze at Mezepoli. Order a selection of small bites like olives, cheese and dips, salads, pita variations or something from the Mediterr-Asian meze section and snack throughout the conversation. With an ideal location on the Piazza, lazy lunching doesn’t get better.
Details: www.mezepoli.co.za | 011 684 1162 | SL26, The Piazza, Whiteley Rd, Melrose Arch, Johannesburg.