& Union review

The space underneath the church on Bree St, just before Heritage Square (travelling away from the mountain), has been converted into several units and the one at the end is & Union. Brought to you buy the guys who originally bought you Vida e Caffe, & Union is not your typical restaurant, but nor is it your typical bar or pub (which is probably why they call themselves a beer salon / charcuterie) and depending on your mood and your needs, it can be any of them and more.

& Union is hoping to educate Capetonians about fine beer. Instead of serving the usual mass production stuff we are normally offered, & Union only serves artisinal beers. You may have seen CSG beers which are available at selected restaurants and outlets and up till now have been available at the Neighbourgoods market. These three beers are available along with three new ones; two Brewers & Union beers and a very strong (10%) beer. The staff will gladly assist you in pairing your beer with the correct food or vice versa. For those who are not into beer, there are two whites wines and two red wines available. The food on offer is a selection of meats and cheeses served with a side salad and homemade crisps. There is gemsbok or tuna carpaccio, grilled sausages and a selection of sliced meats and sausages. It comes on a wooden board with fresh Knead bread.

After a brief introduction we ordered the one each of the two (500ml) Brewers & Union beers (R40 each – yes, you read correctly, you’re not going to go there and smash these things 6-love). To accompany the beers we were given tapas of nacho chips and grilled spicy chorizo, a perfect complement. We ordered a charcuterie plate (R65) which includes your choice of three of the meats on offer. We also ordered the grilled semillion sausage (R65) and a bottle (750ml) of Rafael CSG (R70) to wash it down. I really enjoy eating like that, having a whole selection of things to try and sharing the platters amongst people (must be my Spanish blood). Everything was fresh and the meats are made by hand locally.

Inside & Union, the are no tables, only a bar counter running around the perimeter of the place, some of it high and some of it low and with funky bar stools to sit on. Outside are tables with benches for al fresco dining on sunny days.

We ended off the meal with a good organic coffee, accompanied by organic sugar and organic milk. These guys are going environmental, everything is local and/or organic. This is the way it should be.

As I said earlier, & Union can be what you want depending on your mood and your need. Looking for a nice lunch spot? This is the place. Looking for somewhere to have a post work snack and a beer? This is your spot. Dinner? A coffee or a drink before going out? Why not & Union? Plenty of parking and centrally located, it is what you need it to be. They have only just opened so I can’t tell you when it’s busy or quiet. Why not go check it out and give them some support?

& Union
110 Bree Street, Cape Town
021 422 2770


  1. JP Rossouw January 15, 2009 at 7:20 am

    And what does the name mean? I guess it’s not related, but it sounds like a socialist uprising against SAB!

  2. reto January 15, 2009 at 7:26 am

    sounds delightful

  3. Dax January 15, 2009 at 7:53 am

    The connection with the name is the new beers they are selling: Brewers & Union. But the church didn’t want the word Brewers on the building, hence just & Union.

  4. Mark Vella January 15, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Rui ‘n Brad provide the remedy for mass-franchise vagueness. they have an eye for less is more. My staff have already been and said it was great. We’ll definitely be visiting again.

  5. pia January 15, 2009 at 2:43 pm

    awesome! can’t seem to like beer, no matter how hard i try… and i doubt even artisan beer will change that. but i think it’s awesome that they’re going that route… the food sounds good, and the fact that they’re doing the local/organic thing is fantabulous.

    i love that the church made them leave out ‘brewers’ – haha!

  6. Beer Freak January 17, 2009 at 10:30 am

    always been a bit of a luxury beer lover …ok, a freak. Now I have
    found the place to satisfy my fetish. I have been to &union a few times
    and the beer is great. I for one do not find the beer expensive, half a
    liter of great beer for 40 bucks! .5L that almost 2 beers. When you
    compare it to other international beer brands on our market is actually
    cheaper, and take it from the freak, hell of a lot better quality, and
    taste and…

  7. Dax January 22, 2009 at 8:54 am

    What I was trying to point out with the price is that these beers are something that you stop and appreciate, not just sit around down them without thinking about it as one might do with local beers.

    500ml of Stella draught is around R25, 2x local beers (660ml?) would be R30 so the beers are certainly more expensive, but as you say, definitely worth it.

  8. Liza February 4, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Well well well… the girlz & I sure are happy to have found our “hot Vida Muffin boyz” after much absence….. (We are thinking of a new name for them now…) Hotties Brad and Rui are back in the lime light much to our delight!!! Oh yeah…. the beer… mmmmm almost as yummy as the hosts….. platters are devine, its pretty much a great place to grab a great beer(or glass of wine if you prefer) while you catch up with mates, dine on delectable food & feast the eye on a bit of eye-candy!!!! What more could a girl ask for!!!

  9. Shante February 16, 2009 at 11:41 am

    I was never into beer much, until i came across CSG beer. I love it. These guys have done a brilliant job. The beer is sexy and allows girls to break into the beer drinking market. My food was delectable and mouth watering. And the live funky jazz that plays on a saturday eveing is fantastic! Good job, Brad and Rui.

  10. martin February 20, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    I have spoken with a lot of people who found the experience over priced and not worth it. As a beer lover, I want to go but I have driven by three times and found the place empty. I am willing to give it another try, if someone could suggest a good night? I would also like to know if the beer is pasteurized?

  11. Liza February 21, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    If you go on a Saturday evening they have a jazz band, went last Saturday and it was packed, great vibe & lots of yummy boyz too!!!! As far as I know ,the beer drinking girls in my group said it was pasteurized and claimed it was the reason they did not get a hangover the next morning……??? I did hear that they have started “beer tasting & educating” on a Tue evening for small groups. Gonna book a night for me and the gals, hopefully Brad or Rui will present it…. sounds like a great night out!!

  12. Dax June 1, 2009 at 5:20 pm

    The boys obviously miss those early morning at Vida, &Union is now offering a breakfast option.

    Monday through Saturday, enjoy 100% organic coffees, fine pastries and pressed toasted sandwiches from 7am.

  13. Nols June 4, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    Have been there 3 or so times for a beer & snack – It’s ok-ish – but expensive.

  14. Dax June 10, 2009 at 10:58 am

    I had the pork prego (R60) at &Union last night, it was absolutely amazing. Try it next time.

  15. Andre June 11, 2009 at 9:59 am

    Dax, you are right on that one! I went there for lunch and had the prego, a 500ml Brewers beer and a coffee for 90 bucks! I think its called the workers meal or something? They do it for lunch but it’s not on the menu?

    1. Dax June 11, 2009 at 12:44 pm

      That is a good deal because it would cost about R115 normally… hmm, thinking about that pork prego makes me want to go have one right now!

  16. beerboep October 17, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    Had a bad experience, Friday 14 Oct – &Union busy, Gemma in a foul mood – not a smile in sight, crap service and reluctant to sell anything! Had one beer, bought 8 and will never return! Willbuy the beer at Picardi and Hudsons.

  17. Laura December 15, 2011 at 11:31 am

    went recently ….Very disappointing night at and union. Simon, who I and the bouncer at the gate understood to be in control was clearly not! Won’t be returning any time soon, if you don’t’ want to deal with staff with attitude don’t go here.

  18. Al January 24, 2012 at 9:07 am

    Definitely the most interesting winelist in Cape Town – by a long shot!

  19. albi April 26, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    for those of you who appreciate perfection all round …from the service to the vibe ,the food ,the coffee , & brew.money well spent.raise your glasses people..”well done boys”