Neighbourgoods Market at the Biscuit Mill is still where it’s at I see

DSC02835In keeping with my rediscovery theme of yesterday…  I also popped into the Neighbourgoods Market at the Old Biscuit Mill again last weekend.  I haven’t been to this particular market in a very very looooooong time thanks to all the new markets which have popped up in and around the Mother City which needed to be explored.  But from the massive crowd of people there it was clear to me that this one was this very much a Capetonian favourite.  I had actually forgotten what a pretty market this one is and how much there is to see, sample & buy.  It’s a little piece of retail heaven I tell ya.


The Neighbourgoods market has some of the most tempting food around, so it’s not really a diet friendly kind of place.  This is where you leave your bikini plans at the door and just eat with abandon! ;)  Everything from cupcakes, tarts & macarons to freshly baked breads, homemade pies, paella (made in the biggest paella pans I’ve ever seen), flammkuchen (one of my favourite things on the planet), designer dogs, fragrant Asian dishes and much much more.  You think it, they’ve got it.


Yum, yum and more yum…

A nice addition (this might give you a hint at exactly how long ago I actually last visited this market) is the craft market area outside.  This wasn’t there the last time I was there, but everyone else was like “it’s been here like forever dumb ass”.  OK, geeze. :)  Or maybe it was there and I’m just really really unobservant.  Also a strong possibility… hehe.  Regardless, I loved it.  There are lots of beautiful handmade things to check out, so it makes for a great gift shopping spot for sure.

neighbourgoods3Right, onto some NB market info:

  • Opening Hours: Every Saturday 9:00 – 14:00  (doesn’t even matter if it’s raining, cause the market is safely under cover)
  • Address: The Old Biscuit Mill, 373 Albert Road, Woodstock

This time round I certainly won’t take so long to do a return visit.  Especially because I spotted a few new places nearby that I also want to check out.  So this will be where I get my “exploration fuel” from.

See you there?


Exploring the world of Balkanology

Last Fri eve Darryn, Bjorn and myself headed off to the Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock for the first ever Balkanology party experience for all 3 of us.

Now I had heard crazy stories from previous Balkanology parties…  things like petting zoos, circus folk, oompa loompa music and more.  So I was really keen to finally go check one out for myself.  The theme to this party was: The Masked Vampyre Ball 1819.  With a theme like that I figured that you probably should be dressing up, but I wasn’t sure if people would actually make the effort.  I mean this is Cape Town after all and Capetonians in general don’t really dress up.  We’re just way too cool for that type of thing, right? ;) 

As a last-ditch effort, Bjorn and I caved a teensy bit and opted for some black nails and dark lips, semi-goth style… (oh and some hipster glasses for me as well)

Upon arrival we quickly realised that yes, people do dress up.  Not everyone, but enough people for you to not feel like a lone idiot in your Dracula get up.  In fact we saw quite a few Draculas, the most popular choice for the evening by far.  But I was drawn more to the really over-the-top looks, like these two:

Now that ladies & gentlemen is called making an effort OK…

The setup was very weird & wonderful.  I loved the big bat hanging over the entrance of the dance floor:

The creepy eyes even moved around…

And other weird little features like this tiny car filled with masked folks:

Even though they almost took some people out… you know these Cape Town drivers… sheesh.

And the stage setup, lighting and other decor created a really strange but awesome atmosphere:

Darryn and I nearly got our heads chopped off “Final Destination style” outside when one of the supporting cables for one of the marquees snapped loose.  But strangly it just seemed like one of those things that happen at Balkanology.  Nothing weird about it really. ;)

The official lineup for the evening was as follows:

  • Vlad & the mini Imp’alers Orchestra (Transylvania)
  • Nomadic Orchestra
  • Toby2shoes
  • Maoriginal
  • Noze (France)

This was really not a musical area that I was very familiar with and all those acts were a first for me.  But I think the way I described the music on Twitter on the night still really is the best way to try and set the scene:


I’m gonna try explain the Balkonology music style: think oompa loompa meets Jungle book meet Tetris plus a back beat :) pure awesome

It was very weird, but I kinda dug it.  I just wasn’t very sure how one goes about dancing to it.  Then again, it was very much an everything goes kinda vibe.  So I just went with the flow.

On one visit to the ladies I noticed a set of vampyre teeth that had been adandoned…  I thought to myself, well that’s not very responsible, how’s she going to feed now?  The other vampyres will surely shun her without her teeth!?

Fatal flaw missy… hehe

This was certainly a different night out, but I’m glad I went.  I think if I attempt another Balkanology party I’ll do two things:

  1. Go a bit later – the party officially started at 9pm.  We got there around 9:30, but that was still way too early.  Which meant we ended up drinking way too many vodka & Red Bulls before anything got going and I therefore felt like someone was shining a bright light right into my eyes the whole time.  Thanks caffeine!
  2. Definitely dress up to theme.  The people who did seemed to have way more fun.


Things me loves…

I keep getting hassled by the family about what I want for my bday & xmas this year…  I really didn’t have anything particular in mind.  But in my family, you are forced to put together a wish list.   And money, money & more money is not allowed. ;)

So anyhoo… I started searching the web for some inspiration and I stumbled upon Quirky Me‘s online catalogue.   I’ve mentioned Quirky Me before, they have a gorgeous little shop in the Old Biscuit Mill, but I didn’t realise you could peruse through their beautiful goodies from the comfort of your home.  Sweet.

The following things are now on my “must-have-or-will-throw-tantrum” list:

Heart Chopping Board - R550

Jacaranda Heart Wood Bowl - R180

Robot with Heart mirror - R300

Love Vinyl Sticker - R340

Ceramic Tea Cup with Sparrow - R100 each

Mix + Match Cutlery Set - R260

Keep Calm & Carry On Poster - Sky Blue - R290 (extra for framing)

Singing Bird Print - Grey - R200 (extra for framing)

Pacman Print - R250 (extra for framing)

Yes, I did notice the heart theme throughout most of the items above.  I am heart befok – give me something with a square shape or a round shape and I’m like meh… but slap a heart on that baby and I go crazy.  Dunno why.  My friends will vouch for the fact that I’m not exactly a romantic… I find most mushy stuff a waste of space.  So ja, it’s a bit ironic. :)

It looks like I might be buying a few gifts from me to me this year.  I think I deserve it…


It’s time to pimp out your place of residence

If like me, you are totally over the “OMG I got all this stuff from Mr Price Home for like under 500 bucks!” phase in your life and you now appreciate quality furniture & decor, then you’ll love this little shop at the Old Biscuit Mill that is home to both Abode Interiors & Quirky Me.

An abundance of awesome unique pieces...

They stock everything from creative art works, beautiful mirrors, interesting light/lamp shades, quirky ornaments to reupholstered antique chairs and more.

You name it they've got it... even some kitchen wares

They also had a small display cabinet with some intersting hand made jewellery pieces – a little too dainty & pretty for my taste, but very cool one-of-a-kind designs.

I really loved those two black canvases with the names of all the big cities from around the world... perfect for a trendy loft apartment.

The shop definitely gets ones creative juices flowing.  It gives you some really great ideas for making a boring space more intersting.  And for adding a nice quirky touch to your home. I mean who still wants stock standard, run of the mill stuff in any case?

Also loved the wicker lamp shades. Who would've thought that wicker would actually make a come back!?

Yes – the items you’ll find here are not going to be cheap.  But you’re not exactly getting mass produced poo from China here people!  Live a little, buy something different, I guarantee you… whatever you buy here will make you smile everytime you look at it.

I didn’t make a purchase here on this visit.  But trust me, I’ll be going back. :)

Happy shopping guys &  gals. xxx

Things were buzzing at the I Love Coffee Festival

On Saturday my friend, Nix, and I headed over to the I Love Coffee Festival at the Old Biscuit Mill’s Neighbourgoods Market  (375 Albert Rd, Woodstock).

We got there just after 12pm, so we decided to first head inside the main market area and get something to eat.  Upon entering the market area, the first thing I saw were these smiling ginger bread men:

Eat us! Eat us! OK – don’t mind if I do! haha

They were very tempting, but Nix quickly got me back on track again… we needed REAL food. :)

At the Neighbourgoods Market you can purchase all kinds of gourmet products, baked treats, organic goodies, fresh produce, plants & herbs, boutique wines, beers from micro-breweries and then a great variety of freshly made meal options too.  It’s open every Saturday from 9am to 2pm and it’s always jam packed.

Lots of yummy goodies waiting to be devoured…

Because everything looked so yummy – we had difficulty deciding what to have for lunch – so to help us decide we had a cuppa at Origin.

Origin – A coffee staple in Cape Town

That cup of coffee awakened our senses and it was finally very clear what our hearts desired… classic Italian super thin crust pizza:

OMG, it was sooooo delicious… avo, pear, parma ham, rocket, balsamic reduction and pecorino cheese shavings!

After we scoffed down that beautiful pizza – which was a bit pricey at R120, but still so worth every cent – we walked around the market some more.

Doesn’t that just look so inviting?

I really love the vibe at this market – it’s so bright and lively.  Also, hot tip for all the single girls out there:  This is a total “hottie zone” – it seems this is where all Cape Town’s hot boys flock to on a Saturday morning!  The talent level was pretty damn impressive. :)

Happy market shoppers galore…

Then it was time to get down to business… there were lots of coffees to be tasted at the I Love Coffee festival section and we were up for the challenge!  Now I’m definitely no coffee expert… in fact… my system doesn’t really deal well with caffiene… so this was a high risk mission! haha.

How cute are these festival mugs?  Nix snapped up two of these babies.  I would’ve as well… but I just spent a fortune on beautifully hand crafted mugs at The Pause Room.  So I’m currently all mugged out!

My festival favourite was the Kochere Yirgacheffe Ethiopian coffee from Rosetta Roastery – at the festival price of only R60 a bag, I quickly snatched up some to take home with me.

OK OK, I will admit that I might have been slightly swayed by the cute coffee boys as well… ;)

The Beaver Creek coffee stand showed us how coffee beans are made – first they start of as these red berries and through various processes they finally transform into the brown beans that we are accustomed to:

From berry (far right) to bean (far left)

On the other side of the festival area we found EspressoLab Microroasters – these people were pretty serious about their coffee process:

Getting “scientific” with it…

This was Nix’s favourite and she snatched up a bag of their Et – Ethiopia Odoo Shakiso coffee:

I love the packaging – still sticking to the science theme.

At this point, we were both buzzing.  For me, it felt like everything was happening in fast forward!  It was quite funny… I decided that I needed to quit before totally losing my brain…

We had a great time AND I know quite a bit more about coffee now!  All and all a very successful outing. Can’t wait for the next festival.