I’ve already blogged about Rand Steam and how it is by far the most pleasant suburban shopping center in Joburg. But when I wrote that post I didn’t yet know about Rialheim and Boho Café & Co. — in fact I don’t think they’d opened at that point. As it turns out, this corner of Rand Steam is the best spot in the place.
Rialheim and Boho (I’m forgoing the “Café & Co.” from now on because it’s too much funny punctuation) is a coffee shop inside a ceramics shop. Or rather, it’s a coffee shop surrounding a ceramics shop. It’s hard to explain but trust me, it’s delightful.
Boho Café & Co.
The café is mostly outside, in a little courtyard shaded by a huge, ancient pepper tree with a wooden swing hanging on it. The courtyard is surrounded by greenery and artwork and attractive, cleverly placed structures, allowing guests to almost completely forget they are sitting beside a shopping mall parking lot.
I had two americanos at Boho and they were very good, especially served in Rialheim’s mugs. (I forgot to find out where the coffee comes from.)
The biggest surprise was the food, which is excellent. Initially Boho only served cakes and pastries, but they have now expanded to a full menu with a liquor license.
The service at Boho was a bit slow on the day we went, but I didn’t begrudge the extra time spent. It’s not the kind of place where one should be in a rush.
Boho’s courtyard flows seamlessly into Rialheim’s beautifully designed showroom.
I’m not much of a shopper, especially when it comes to home decor. Yet I literally want to buy every single dish, light fixture, and ceramic animal head trophy in Rialheim — it’s all made in South Africa, by the way, on a farm in the Robertson Wine Valley — and transport it into my own house. I love Rialheim’s pretty, eclectic, shiny weirdness and even if I don’t buy it, I could spend hours just gazing at it all.
This post was initially supposed to be part of my Jozi Coffee Shops series, but now I’ve realized it’s not about a coffee shop. It’s about the wonderful, surprising amalgamation that is Rialheim and Boho Café & Co., and defies all blogging categories.
Go forth, be merry, drink coffee and buy ceramics.
Rialheim and Boho are open 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturdays, and 9:00 to 3:00 p.m. Sundays.