Shop Menu

Exclusive Café: A New Chapter in Exclusive Books’ History

There is nothing quite as gorgeous as the magical pairing of a great book with the perfect coffee. An espresso for a short story. An Americano for Hemmingway. A macchiato for poetry.

At Exclusive Books, our first love is literature. Our second is coffee. So naturally, we are delighted to introduce Exclusive Café in our pursuit of the perfect experience. The first step in this new direction will be to serve the best coffee with only the greatest respect for the bean. It is not only a natural extension of our brand, but a wonderful opportunity to combine our two great loves.

Find our latest EB Café

You can currently find EB Café at the following stores:

* Exclusive Books Rosebank Mall
* Exclusive Books V&A Waterfront
* Exclusive Books Canal Walk
* Exclusive Books Clearwater Mall
* Exclusive Books Westville

The Coffee

At Exclusive Café, we serve coffee artfully roasted for us by Legado Coffee, based near Stellenbosch. We have partnered with Legado Coffee as our purveyors because they share our obsession with perfection. They are as dedicated to coffee as we are to books, and their depth of expertise and enthusiasm is remarkable. It is a wonderful partnership for us, and one that we are delighted to showcase in our first Exclusive Café.

For our Rosebank store we have chosen three coffees: two single origins and one blend, all of which are ethically sourced. Each coffee has been chosen for its delicate flavour profile and natural fit for our brand’s portfolio. The beans come from microlots in the world’s best coffee-growing regions and have been praised for their exceptional complexity and brightness in flavour and body. As we expand our offerings, and as they become available, we will also introduce other exceptional single origins and blends to our menu.

We are serving our coffee in the contemporary style increasingly known as the third wave of coffee, which may be unfamiliar to many of our customers at first. The third wave celebrates coffee as an artisanal drink with the complexity of wine, rather than treating it as a mundane necessity. As such, all stages of the coffee-producing process are being improved, from harvesting and processing procedures to closer ties between growers, traders and roasters. This is in line with the global pursuit for artisanal experiences and the revival of alternative, skilled production methods such as pour-over brewing and the use of antique grinders.

Our coffee is treated with reverence, and adheres to strict standards in order to ensure the full flavour integrity of the bean. As such, our coffee is served differently to many coffee establishments in South Africa. So what is different?


What we’re drinking

The most obvious change is the types of drinks on offer. We have replaced the cappuccino with the flat white. It is made with microfoam, which is velvety and glossy. It isn’t boiled but instead carefully steamed, and so the flavour of the coffee is enhanced rather than masked by scalded foam. It creates a richer, smoother coffee flavour. By keeping the milk at a slightly lower temperature, the natural sweetness of the milk is maintained and the coffee doesn’t need sugar. South Africans are familiar with lattes and cappuccinos, but not to worry! Flat white coffees are far more delicious and lovingly made, and are a point of pride for our baristas.

Part of our coffee offering includes two manual-brewing options. Just as the novel is a lengthy escape from a restless, hectic world, slow-brewed coffee is a quiet ritual that showcases coffee and gives the drinker an experience, not just a beverage. Hario V60 and Chemex are manual brewing methods that use different filters and pouring devices to enhance different characteristics of the coffee. Using the Hario V60 emphasises the full-bodied flavour of the coffee bean, whereas a Chemex pour-over will bring out the sweeter side of the bean. Using a manual filtration method to prepare coffee is the most elemental and rewarding approach to making coffee, and a wonderful way to experience the origin characteristics of a particular coffee. Pour-over coffee is best drunk without sugar or milk.

Our coffees come from microlots, meaning that these are limited edition coffees from exceptional harvests. The beans are selected from smaller lots producing coffee of outstanding flavour (determined by cupping a variety of hand-selected lots). It requires patience, but gives us something truly special.

Below we have listed the origin characteristics of the beans. Origin characteristics are the flavours and tastes inherent to the bean before roasting. The roasting process influences the final flavour of the bean. By choosing light and medium roasts, we maintain the integrity of the bean’s origin characteristics.

Please note that our coffee offering will change seasonally: the coffees below have been chosen for Exclusive Café’s debut.

Burundi: Buhorwa

About the bean
Rich with raspberry, citrus, herb and chocolate notes, this coffee has a floral finish. Grown in a difficult-to-reach area close to one of Burundi’s last remaining rainforests, this coffee enjoys a rare microclimate due to its proximity to the rainforest’s climate. This roast is one of the top ten of the Prestige Cup and has been awarded ‘Cup of Excellence’ status. It is a relatively rare coffee and difficult to source, but we believe it is worth all the trouble.

How to drink it
This versatile coffee can be enjoyed with or without milk. Try as a macchiato or flat white.

El Salvador: La Divina

About the bean

This coffee is marked by chocolate, floral, nutty and fruity notes, and has rich body. Farmed on the side of a volcano, these beans are grown in an extremely rich and loamy soil with high mineral content, leading to an exceptional coffee quality in the Bourbon cultivars. The Palo Campana micro-region in which this single farm is located has been declared the 17th Worldwide Biosphere protected area by the UN. This mountain range is a Central American mecca for the coffee lover.

How to drink it
This is a full-bodied and bold coffee, best enjoyed as a pour-over in a Hario V60, Chemex, Americano or espresso. Hold the milk!

Signature #1 blend– Our Exclusive Café’s very own blend

About the blend

Dark chocolate, cacao, soft spices and sweetness await you in this full-bodied blend. Specially created by Legado Coffee for Exclusive Café, this is our wonderful blend of beans from several regions to create a coffee of impeccable character and impact. Although the beans have been sourced predominately from South and Central America, we have included a balanced measure of African flair. Just like a story rich in character depth and substance, we’ve worked hard to perfect this unique blend. It tells a beautiful story – from start to finish – and is the perfect accompaniment to your favourite book, and to hours spent with fine company.

How to drink it
Bring on the milk and enjoy as a flat white, macchiato or cortado.

The Baristas

Coffee can only ever be as good as the people who prepare it, and we have taken every care to find the right people to prepare our coffees. Our baristas have been extensively trained by our coffee supplier Legado Coffee to ensure that they know each coffee’s potential. Each barista expresses their vibrant curiosity, creativity and passion through coffee.

But our baristas are not just staff – they are truly members of the Exclusive Books family. Our baristas come from a variety of backgrounds and we are proud of them, for they embody the best of Exclusive Books.

The Café

As part of our commitment to craft and supporting small, local businesses, we have sourced a variety of wonderful foods and sweets for EB Café, ranging from handmade cookies to homemade jams. We will also offer sandwiches, croissants and tarts to go with our fine coffees, and our menu will change with the seasons to ensure that we constantly offer new, unusual and spectacular delights.

13 Responses to Exclusive Café: A New Chapter in Exclusive Books’ History

  1. Elana October 3rd, 2014 at 3:00 pm #

    your coffee is fabulous

    • Zoe October 8th, 2014 at 6:10 am #

      Hi Elana,

      Thank you! We are very proud of our coffee, and do our best to make sure it is perfect every day. Thank you for visiting us!

  2. Stefan October 21st, 2014 at 1:11 pm #


    Brilliantly made coffee and fantastic staff! I felt very looked after by Waseem and his team on a recent stay in Johannesburg!

    Do yourself a favour and try them out – I’ll definitely be back next time I’m in Joburg!

    • Zoe November 7th, 2014 at 1:33 pm #

      Hi Stefan,

      Thank you for the kind words! We’ll pass it on to Was and the team – they are superb, and we’re all proud of the work they do :)

  3. Heather November 15th, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

    I wish that I had experienced the great service described above. Unfortunately, I found the service this afternoon so bad as to be infuriating.

    I ordered and paid for my coffee at the counter and then proceeded to wait for 20 mins before my coffee arrived. And I wasn’t alone – the customers on either side of me also experienced a 20 min wait (which I don’t understand, since one of then had ordered an espresso).

    After trying to get Waseem’s attention for over 30 mins to complain, I found him to be unsympathetic and quite sarcastic.

    I can’t see myself ever going to this cafe again.

    • Cerys November 19th, 2014 at 2:05 pm #

      Hi Heather

      Our apologies for the bad experience. EB Cafe is a new venture for the Exclusive Books group and we are still working hard on making sure the experience is a good one for all of our customers. Saturday was officially the busiest day the Cafe has experienced since it opened and our staff were admittedly struggling to keep up with the high demand for our delicious coffee. Each bad day is a learning experience for the staff and helps them to improve their service, so we are sure that they will now be better able to handle the next busy day they experience.

      I have spoken to Waseem who extends his apologies, it was definitely not his intention to seem either sarcastic or unsympathetic.

      We do hope that you will give us another chance in the future and thank you for your feedback.

  4. Thaakiyah Manan April 26th, 2015 at 8:01 am #

    Good morning

    I greatly look forward to the Canal Walk branch to open.

    I have heard great things about your coffee

    Can’t wait to they it out


  5. Fabian June 4th, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

    Good day Zoe,

    I’m interested to know when the EB Cafe in Century City will open. Heard a few things about it.

    • Cerys June 8th, 2015 at 11:28 am #

      Hi Fabian

      The EB Cafe at Century City/Canal Walk will be open towards the end of July 2015 :)

  6. Carl July 4th, 2016 at 7:30 am #

    I had the most unpleasant experience at EB Café – Exclusive Books V&A Waterfront yesterday afternoon. The waiter attending to our table, lacked knowledge of menu items to the point that it became embarrassing to him and us. Most of the beverage items requested appeared to be out of stock, according to him, due to supplier non-delivery. When asked about the prices of cake slices, he stated he would go and find out, but never returned thus we never ordered any cake. Needless to say, upon attempting to pay for the items we did order I noticed that he had given us the incorrect bill, belonging to a another table.
    The shop was not busy at all, yet service delivery was substandard – waiters need to be more service orientated and have better understanding and knowledge of the menu items…
    I won’t be returning to this venue.

    • Cerys July 4th, 2016 at 11:13 am #

      Hi Carl

      Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention, it has been forwarded to the EB Cafe management for follow up. Could you please email your contact details to so that they can contact you with an update.


  1. Meet Our Coffee Brand Legado - October 8th, 2014

    […] The coffee is also available on Yuppiechef and Legado also just recently launched a venture with Exclusive Books. […]

  2. Meet Our Coffee Brand Legado - October 8th, 2014

    […] The coffee is also available on Yuppiechef and the brand just launched an exciting new venture with Exclusive Books. […]

Leave a Reply