Voodoo Lily Café

  64 St Andrew St, Birdhaven ,   Rosebank & The Parks          +27 11 442 6965     04 Feb 2020
created 19 Feb 2016

One of Joburg’s defining features is the sprawling identikit new gated suburbs that spread ever steadily northwards, punctuated by strip malls and garden centres. To find Joburg's pavement cafe culture you need to head to the older suburbs such as Parkhurst, Parkview, Linden, Norwood, Kensington, Craighall Park, Illovo and Birdhaven where the sense of community created by the suburban High Street’s mom and pop shops endures. After all why sit at another franchise inside a mall when you could be at a characterful corner cafe that looks out onto a friendly neighbourhood street? 

Voodoo Lily, perfectly placed at the corner of a popular strip of family-run shops in Birdhaven (an older upmarket suburb between Melrose Arch and Rosebank), has long been a convenient go-to corner cafe for local residents and those in the area when visiting the excellent James & Ethel Gray Park at the bottom of the road. In recent years the cafe was starting to lose its mojo, although fortunately in June 2019 Voodoo Lily got a new lease of life with new owners, a fresh look and a completely updated menu. 

The extensive refurbishment has gifted Voodoo Lily the feel of a colourful cafe-bistro. There’s an eye-catching statement mosaic and a colourful wallpaper collage made up of thousands of photos of people and scenes from the local area. Other additions include a dedicated bar serving wine, cocktails and craft beers and a separate counter area adapted as 'workstations' for those looking to put in some hours on their laptop. Meanwhile the extensive pavement terrace that neighbours a family-run grocer and butcher shop and looks directly onto a children's playground, is as generously proportioned as ever.

The most notable and welcome changes are found on Voodoo Lily's new breakfast, lunch and dinner menus which are now more extensive and finely executed.

The new breakfast menu is generously portioned. Perfect for soaking up a hangover. There’s eggs, eggs and more eggs including six different varieties of eggs benedict, huevos rancheros (Mexican style poached eggs) and boiled eggs with toast soldiers for the kids, plus a rich signature shakshuka and very satisfying omelettes made with interesting fillings such as herbed mushrooms, spinach and goat cheese. There are also vegan and banting options, sweet pancake stacks, French toast or healthy options such as homemade granola, smoothie bowls and rolled oats. Wash it all down with a freshly pressed juice (for a major pick-me-up try one of the 'flu fighter' health shots) and you’ll be more than ready to face the day.

As with the breakfast menu, lunch is very much in-keeping with the friendly local cafe ethos – not too complicated but with enough to keep you interested. Choose from salads, a signature hot brisket on rye, a spicy Portuguese steak prego sandwich, classic burger and the ‘famous’ voodoo lamb bangers with mash and gravy and an array of small plates options. Head chef Josh punts the vegetarian gnocchi broccolini - fresh gnocchi with pulverised broccoli and garlic, as one of his favourite dishes. He spent years perfecting it since a friend’s nonna first cooked it up for him in Bologna, Italy. 

The ‘old’ Voodoo Lily was well-known for its wide choice of vegetarian, vegan and banting-friendly options and if these are your dietary needs you’ll still feel welcome. Dog-owners will also be happy to hear that the cafe is still one of the most pooch-friendly in this part of the city with water bowls for the dogs and the option to order your fluffy friend some items from the ‘doggy menu’.

(Food photos courtesy Jozi Food Whore).

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Facilities for disabled
Outside seating
Live Music
Guarded parking
Dogs Allowed




Open 07:00–21:00 (bar stays open later depending on crowd), Sun, Mon 07:00–17:00.

Price/Additional Info



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