I recently had the pleasure of stopping by one of the new Thrupps branches for the first time when I was in Linksfield, east of Johannesburg. I recall hearing about this legendary grocer on the Money Show on Radio 702, with Bruce Whitfield about a year or two ago, when the brand was being revived and more stores were being launched. There’s been a Thrupps centre in Illovo in northern Joburg for many years, famous for their delux gift baskets, imported specialty foods and home delivery.
The branch we visited is close to the Saheti school, at a Total service station forecourt, which sounds quite bland. However just walking up to the entrance it’s immediately apparent that something is very different…
Yes, there’s a red carpet and a velvet rope at the entrance of the Thrupps convenience store! Inside it’s absolutely charming and has brass and dark green shop fittings with a touch of old world luxury.
For such a small space they have an amazing array of imported snacks (mostly from the UK it seems), deli meats and a bakery on site. Of course I had some pastries. I had the garage pie to end all garage pies…so did my husband and some friends who joined us on the day. They even went for seconds.
I wanted to try the lamb pie but I someone bought the remaining three when I was distracted by all the sights and aromas in the shop. I opted for the beef and onion. This pie was solid meat and just a touch of gravy inside! Trust me when I say you have never had a store bought pie like this. This tasted like something Martha Stewart would make. I still think fondly of that pie, especially now that I’m minimising my carb intake.
Above: Lamb pies….AWOL
The staff were very friendly and welcoming. We had a laugh with them about the state were in, because our clothes were a mess from attending a colour festival earlier that day. If you find yourself in that part of Jozi, make a turn there. It is always so wonderful to find little places like this where you know you will get great service and excellent quality food and other goodies. I’d be over the moon if they opened a branch here in the capital.
Here’s a little info about Thrupps history from their website:
The grocers of distinction, Thrupps, first opened a shop on the corner of Eloff and President Streets in 1892. The store occupied a number of premises in Johannesburg itself before a major move to the northern suburbs in 1947 to Rosebank which later became the headquarters in 1966. Together with the enthusiasm of our new South Africa, Thrupps moved the business to the Thrupps Illovo Centre at 204 Oxford Road in Illovo, neatly placed between the busy Rosebank and the Sandton precincts.
Thrupps has always stocked a mixture of the best local produce and imported specialities. Founder Charles Thrupp soon discovered that the imported goods of the time were in great demand and by the early 1900’s the cargo ships that sailed from the United Kingdom were laden with crates marked “Thrupps” and filled with assorted delicacies.
After World War II over one million food parcels were packed and posted to Britain, which meant an added work load of 1 000 parcels a day for four years. Among their food parcel clients were The Rt Hon. J. C. Smuts of Doornkloof, Irene, who sent supplies to Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Palace, Her Majesty Queen Mary at Kensington Palace and Sir Winston Churchill at Hyde Park Gate, London.
This is not a sponsored post. I just happened to be in the area & had a wonderful visit to the store.