Chai & Chow, Sandton
10:00 - 17:00 Daily for takeouts during lockdown
09:00 - 20:00 Mon to Sat
09:00 - 18:00 Sun and Public holidays
Price Range (p/p)
Cheap | Under R100,Medium | R100 - R300
If you like traditional with a little stylish pizzazz you’re in for a treat at Chai & Chow. This little gem situated at the Style Loft permanent pop-up shop in Sandton City is the brainchild of Farzana Sibda from Zana Tea Company. The concept of the permanent pop-up is to showcase 10 brands on a 3-month rotation. So there’s always something fresh and new.
Having founded a luxury online tea company the brand sits well with the luxury brands you can shop at the pop-up. Chai & Chow is an extension of ZanaTeaCo which has its roots in markets and pop-ups all over Gauteng. I will hardly ever leave a market where they are without my Chai Bomb fix at the end of the night.
They started serving traditional Indian snacks like Bhajias, Pandela, Gulgulas drizzled with syrup and Wanaa with their delicious Pomegranate sauce at the markets. With the launching of their cafe setup at the Style loft pop-up they have included these traditional snacks along with a cafe-style menu of Bruschetta, Soups, Pies filled with Chicken/Steak and Mash, filled Croissants and of course Dessert, which includes cakes, pastries and Burfee from the talented Sumire from @fortheloveofburfee.
The decor has a modern vintage feel. Being part of the pop-up, it’s quite bright. The dark wood vintage counter is offset by white wooden tables, with black and white decor. I loved the white frames with tea quotes on the dark wall and the elegant crockery and cutlery. There’s only about 5 4-seater tables with room for social distancing.
We ordered a vegetable soup which my friend heartily enjoyed and I had the Naan Bruschetta with Pastrami. This was a very generous serving of 4 half naan rolls piled high with pastrami, gherkins, pepperdews, a green chutney sauce, mayo and decoratively topped with a crispy cheese raclette. This was served with a deliciously crunchy salad and a side of Chilli Chippi crisps. For a Cape Town girl this iconic Cape Town product from Messaris was the piece de resistance. I was so bowled over by the crisps that they promptly brought out a whole bowl just for me. The naan was a great base for this, the pastrami and naan combo felt like Eid breakfast. I felt it lacked a bit of heat but I would order it again. As mentioned it was generous and I took half of it home.
We finished off with a Dirty Chai which is a chai with a shot of espresso and the ever classic Chai Bomb. For the first time I did not have my Chai Bomb in a paper cup but in their gorgeous Maxwell and Williams teacups poured from individual glass teapots. The serving was enough for two cups of tea. The one great thing about ordering tea here is that you’re getting proper brewed tea with flavour depth, not that wishy washy watery stuff when you order tea at most other restaurants. The reason why I mainly drink coffee out.
The soup was R60 and the bruschetta R80. Most other dishes average R90 to R100. You can expect lamb haleem, slow roast fillet croissant, cheesy stuffed roasted steak and mash pie amongst others. There are gorgeous dessert options and of course their range of luxury teas.
You’ll find them on the Upper level of Nelson Mandela Square at Sandton City near Rocomamas and Nonna’s, 2 other halaal spots you could try. Hopefully, Chai and Chow will continue to be there after the 3-month rotation. If not, best you get there soon.
𝗙𝗶𝗻𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗲𝘀𝗲 𝟭𝟬 𝗮𝗺𝗮𝘇𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗯𝗿𝗮𝗻𝗱𝘀 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝟭 𝗝𝘂𝗻𝗲 𝘁𝗼 𝟮𝟵 𝗔𝘂𝗴𝘂𝘀𝘁 2021 𝗮𝘁 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗦𝘁𝘆𝗹𝗲 𝗟𝗼𝗳𝘁 𝗽𝗼𝗽 𝘂𝗽 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝗲