Despite making every year’s list of Durban’s Cafe Society; i.e. one of the best coffee shops in Durban, I had never been to Mark Gold until a few months ago. This is especially bad as I drive past Mitchell park countless times and have frequented the Vida e cafe next door as many times.
My very simple reason – intimidation. I remember back to university days, driving past and seeing all these fabulous beautiful people inside. It almost felt like an exclusive, “must be fantastic only” club and as a student I was far removed from that ideal. And over time, as the years went by Mark Gold merged into the scenery such that it never occurred to me to give them a visit.
I intentionally changed that by conquering my (student fear of awesomeness?) by deciding to visit every coffee shop on the 2014 Durban’s Cafe Society list. I’ve been a few times now (yay for me) and can attest to why this cafe has consistently made the list. The iced coffee is easily one of the best in Durban, not overly sweet or bitter, and made with milk – not only ice. I’ve also tried the cappuccino and it’s excellent.
By way of background, Mark Gold is a coffee shop situated on the doorsteps of the Mark Gold jewelry store, a concept they call ‘front of store coffee shop’. It’s small with only a few tables and a counter. Yes that’s it. You don’t go here for the decor or space. But it doesn’t lack for this, as it is situated across the road from the beautiful Mitchell’s Park and surrounded by trees and the busy street vibe.
The Cafe was busy whenever I’ve been which is a testament to the fact that people in the know appreciate what is has to offer. Well, with being voted Durban’s best cappuccino for the last 15 years it’s an old-established brand. Light meals are also on offer and is simple, no frills, wholesome food.
There’s a lovely, clean feel to the place and whilst there I saw folk conduct business meetings. And yes, there were the super fit and healthy ladies coming in yoga gear and havaianas too (on a weekday afternoon no less). As I suspected back in the day, the Cafe is still the haunt of the beautiful and fabulous, yet laid back, and service is with a friendly smile.
Mark Gold also sell their coffee beans, the Farfell brand from Zambia.
I recommend Mark Gold for a friendly catch up, business meeting or just great coffee. You can find them at 469 Innes Road.