Monday, 14 April 2014

April - new places to eat, drink and shop.

The new 'Chokolata' tea shop
I've been away for a while, so it was good to get back home and see what's been happening in Vejer in my absence. Most of the town's shops and restaurants are now open for the summer, with a few new additions to make things interesting.

First, I'd like to mention the new Chokolata tea-shop, which opened last week on Calle Altozano, a few steps away from Juan Relinque. Turn past the 'Calle Alta' shop and 'Chokolata' is on the left. When you climb the stairs, you'll find an elegant and inventive interior which even provides a cosy room for children to play in while their parents enjoy a quiet cuppa.
The establishment supplies a wide range of crepes, cakes and beverages as well as hot soup. Chokolata is a new enterprise from the owners of the retail shop of the same name on Juan Bueno, and has the same classy and colourful 'feel'.

 Chokolata, which became a very successful meeting-place and hosted numerous community and arts events, closed its Vejer cafe in November 2015.  The cafe reopened in Chiclana in 2016.

Another fascinating new shop is 'Amouna' at Calle Corredera 43. The owner, Silvana Bertotti, who has moved across from Conil to share the Vejer experience, named it after a favourite hammam in Morocco, whose atmosphere she now tries to share with her customers. The shop is a treasure house of Moroccan and Andalucían textiles and artifacts, as well as some locally produced and original pieces of furniture.
Chantal Zwanenburg's new clothes shop 'Zahir' also opened last week at Calle José Castrillon 1, just under the Arco de la Villa off the Plaza de España. 'Zahir' sells designs by 'Max and Jan', Moroccan based designers with a commitment to creating beautiful and affordable clothing in gorgeous colours, most of which are 'one-size' - the perfect answer when you want something pretty to slip into after an exhausting day on the beach.

It's also lovely to see the return of some old favourites. La Brasa de Sancho, Calle Sancho IV el Bravo, with its quiet street tables and a bird's-eye view of the Plaza de España also has a peaceful indoor patio for those days when, like today, the Levante blows.

Down on the Plaza España, Garimba is now open again, with plentiful outdoor tables and a cool and colourful interior.

The popular Casa Varo, Sra. de la Oliva 9, has re-opened with high-quality local cuisine and sheltered tables at the foot of Vejer's ancient parish church.

The Casa del Califa tapas bar on Calle Corredera has been open for a few weeks - it's a good place to sample the Califa's famous Moroccan cuisine when you haven't booked a table.

La Piccolina Italian restaurant and coffee bar is now open on the Plaza de España.

'La Pajara' which sells custom-printed t-shirts is now open on Calle José Castrillón.

The Bar Arriate on Calle Corredera, often the first stop for day visitors to the town has now reopened.

Bar Arriete is now part of the Califa group and has been renamed 'Correders 55'.

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