Known for its restaurants and vibey meeting spots, Gleneagles Road in Johannesburg’s Greenside is always bustling with crowds in search of the latest trend. It is little wonder then that this popular strip recently became home to The Greensider, a refreshing edition to the range of food markets to hit urban centres across the country.

Unlike other markets, The Greensider trades four days a week, Thursday to Sunday, from morning (10:00) till late evening (22:00). With a cosmopolitan range of treats dished up by the various vendors, a trip to The Greensider will make visitors feel like a global food sampler. Traditional dishes from Mexico, Columbia, Greece, Argentina and the Balkans are on offer, together with the most amazingly fluffy waffles this side of Belgium.

Those looking to have a casual rendezvous can make conversation with a glass of craft beer or speciality cocktail in hand. There is also an impressive by-the-glass wine selection on offer, and a mojito bar which serves 30 flavour variants, from the traditional to chocolate cookie!

An aesthetically pleasing (and spacious!) space

Locals have quickly taken to The Greensider, which is the brainchild of businessman Nicolas Panayiotou, who has developed numerous businesses along the same strip in the past. “The space was previously occupied by a hardware store, but I wanted to fill the area with something that would complement the road’s culinary and social offerings…. A food market aimed at families and friends seemed appropriate,” he says. The transformation from hardware store to a bustling food market happened seemingly overnight, with Panayiotou, a trained architect, designing, building and installing numerous of the elements which make The Greensider not just an engaging spot, but an aesthetically pleasing one as well.

 

The Greensider is a generous, crowd-friendly space, with food stalls huddled along the numerous tables and chairs in the middle of the market – allowing visitors ample space to enjoy seated meals bought from the various vendors.  Due to the site being solely dedicated to the market and its traders, the owners of the various stalls could erect permanent structures, allowing them creative freedom to implement captivating designs to communicate their respective fare.

Would you like some comedy or Latin American dancing with that?

But it is not just food that’s on offer.

 

On Tuesday evenings The Greensider hosts some of South Africa’s best known – and up and coming – comedians for Tuesday Night Comedy. Says Panayiotou: “Loyiso Gola, David Kibuuka, John Vlismas and other top comedians are regular headline acts, making this by far the best value entertainment on offer anywhere!” Entrance for these shows is a mere R30, which secures fans a seat and guaranteed belly laughs.

For good measure the space is transforms into a Latin American hall for “Salsa parties” every last Thursday of the month – and entry is free.

“The transformation of the space has been amazing, families come here for a fun and casual night out, friends meet here for a quick drink and a bite, office workers pop in for a hearty lunch – it really is a space that caters for everyone,” adds Panayiotou.

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