An Unlikely Coffee Haunt – Lansdowne Recycling Centre

Alright. Nobody expects a coffee shop at their local recycling centre.

And then, after the initial surprise, one really doesn’t expect it to be this GOOD.

A week or so ago, on an early Saturday morning, I was trying out a new recycling establishment after the Grumpy Guses at my old one made me wonder if there were other places I could send my disturbingly large pile of wine bottles to become (hopefully) new wine bottles.

My relationship with the people at the last place I recycled at.
My relationship with the people at the last place I recycled at.
Pinelands Store (also open Sundays)
Pinelands Store (also open Sundays)

And so I tried out the Oasis recycling centre on Imam Haroon road. The Oasis Association is a well-known organisation working toward the support & empowerment of people with intellectual disabilities in Cape Town. They have recycling centres, bric-a-brac stores in Pinelands & Claremont, and also the Claremont coffee shop & bakery.

It’s the latter that has me hunting for bits of paper around the house as any excuse to return to the centre. The baked goods are superb!

To clarify, the coffee shop part does appear to be more of a tag-on to the second-hand store, which is entirely invisible from the street & doesn’t look particularly inviting if you’re just walking by. But, turn the corner & you’ll find yourself in a sweet little courtyard dotted with a few unpretentious wooden tables, and the occasional half-price clothing rack. There’s even a small play area for your restless offspring.

The less-than-inviting exterior
The less-than-inviting exterior

Oh, and the coffee & baked goods are really affordable. I’m talking R5-a-muffin affordable. When last did you pay R5 for a muffin that didn’t come in a plastic wrapper or tasted as though the wrapper was, in fact, a key ingredient in the muffin’s manufacture?  These ones are freshly-baked, and glorious. Actually, forget the muffins – the crunchies are what I keep pretending to buy for other people (the shame of returning twice in one day inspired the fib). I generally don’t have strong opinions on crunchies (but one SHOULD), and I have powerful feelings about these crunchies. Those feelings could possibly be love. I don’t know. I don’t want to talk about it.

COFFEE (and crunchies!)

The thing is, you enter this bric-a-brac store & you naturally expect the kind of fare that one gets at the average church-hall white Ricoffy-Instant-Coffee-750g-6001068323500elephant event. Don’t laugh, I live for these (once I walked away with 7 bottles of nearly-expired booze & fed it to my friends to see what would happen). But generally you’ll get your hands on perhaps one delicious jam tart or two, and the rest is all banana bread & Ricoffy served with plastic spoons & long-life milk.

So, having remembered the kind of coffee associated with bric-a-brac sales, I was reluctant to try what they were offering. But I was suffering from some serious caffeine withdrawal, and the sign told me that the coffee was really cheap. I risked it. And the coffee-addict inside me hit the jackpot.

coffeeFor an order of two cups of coffee we were served a large french press of pretty divine brew (it was rather too large to finish), and we had it with the beautiful, syrupy, write-home-to-your-mother-and-tell-her-you’ve-seen-it-all-and-can-die-happy-now-or-maybe-after-just-one-or-two-more crunchies. The morning sun warmed us slowly & a young dad & his two-year-old spawn entertained us with their chatter & her adorable mischief.

It was the perfect Saturday morning, and I also walked out with some bric-a-brac I have no use for but swore to god I will need one day.

You can find the Oasis Coffee Shop at on the corner of Imam Haroon (old Lansdowne) & Lee roads & it’s open between 9am & 4pm on weekdays & 9am & 1pm on Saturdays.

Other things they sell are large packs of freshly-baked biscuits for R30, fresh bread, scones & mini quiches. They generally have a very limited supply though, so it’s recommended that you arrive early if you want your pick. The staff are lovely & helpful & the patrons generally equally so!

Visit their website at or give them a call at 021 – 674-5570.

Enjoy 🙂


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