Calisto’s, a Portugeuse joint is definitely a well-kept secret unless you frequent the South of Joburg. Confess – unless you live/work out that way you probably don’t.
That’s how I came across them myself a few years back – it was the venue for our office’s year-end function & I really didn’t have the foggiest clue. At that time we drove our to their landmark branch in Turfontein & on that particular day the food didn’t really make an impression on me. They since opened their second branch in Fordsburg right around the corner from me. We popped in once & haven’t been able stay away since, often even getting takeaways.
PS sorry in advance – the pics could be better but the lighting was low…
Calisto’s – homely, cosy & fuss-free
THE seafood platter for 2. Not shown here (we ate it before I could take a pic is the side of mussels in a creamy garlic sauce)…
- The food is really, really good, in fact, better than most of the seafood chains in my opinion (unless you are going to one of the super fancy ones)
- I highly recommend the seafood platter for 2 for R250 (we order it almost every time). It comes with your choice of sauces so you can choose your heat level 🙂 Go hungry and I promise you will still struggle to finish it.
- In particular the creamy garlic mussels (part of the platter but arrives separately) is hands-down the best I’ve had anywhere. Tip: save some of the complimentary bread the bring to the table before your meal arrives to mop up some of the garlic sauce. Amazing!
- For a place that’s rather ‘budget’ the service isn’t – they’re really on point (granted it’s gotten to the point now where they know our names & we have ‘a table’ of our own!)
- If it’s important to you it’s definitely very family friendly (think Spur minus the kiddies play area)
- That they don’t have branches like, everywhere! Ok, seriously they need at least one in the Northern suburbs…
They also have a pizza oven which is a bit weird. We tried a prawn pizza once as well – thin, crispy base & nice & spicy but not the best I’ve had. There’s also chicken and red meat on the menu though we haven’t given it a go yet (the seafood platter for 2 is that good!)…
Need to know
- They open for lunch from noon daily
- They do welcome walk-ins but I wouldn’t risk arriving without a booking on a Friday or Saturday night – the place pumps!
- Parking is off street so you may struggle a bit but we usually just circle the block once or twice & something always comes up
If I ran the place
- I cannot figure why these guys don’t have a massive franchise around Jozi & SA already – seriously.
Calisto’s isn’t fancy. It has a welcoming, down-to-earth community feel but it’s by no means dodgy either. I think ‘polished budget’ is fair. There’s no décor to keep you entertained – you get what you pay for. The portions are generous, the service is good and the food comes fast. For me it’s the perfect weekday dinner kind of spot that I’ll happily go to dressed down easily 2/3 times a week.
Oh & Calisto’s is fully certified halaal (i.e. there’s no alcohol).
Go! It’s yummy, you’ll love!
66 Central Road, Fordsburg
011 027 0786