The retail strip along Melville’s Main Road is a gritty place. It’s lined with seedy bars, fast-food joints, and boarded-up storefronts. Traffic is brutal, trees are scarce, and the sidewalk is potholed.
Right in the center of it is Koljander (Afrikaans for “coriander”) — a 30-year-old cooperative home industry shop run by women. Koljander sells baked goods, ethnic food, jam, jewelry, clothing, and art — pretty much anything people can make with their own two hands. You could go there 100 times and discover something new and fabulous each time. The store also does a booming catering business, with wedding cakes being a particular specialty.