Your guide to making the most of a breakfast buffet

“All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast” John Gunther

Oh John, we couldn’t agree more. This is an open and shut case. Whether you are at home or on the backpacker trails, an uplifting breakfast experience is a big step in the right direction towards winning your day. But, there is breakfast and then there is breakfast; and the buffet is the king of the breakfast realm. Read on for the definitive guide to attacking your breakfast buffet with impunity.
Also, read on for special mention of breakfasting in Vietnam and South East Asia!

Phase 1


Photo credit @milachecarellifoto via instagram


Phase 2

This phase necessarily overlaps with phase 1 and is all about egg. Egg is the poster child of the breakfast food world. There are so many ways to eat an egg and it’s not important how you eat it. Enjoy your egg hard or soft, boiled, fried or poached. Feel free to add items like bacon, tomatoes; they are delicious, but non-essential. This phase is about egg & toast; so let’s talk about bread. Bread eating, like egg eating, is virtually a bottomless pit of joy. You can almost not go wrong.Try a toasted croissant with extra butter. Avoid fruity bread during this phase, because it takes away from the egg; and the egg is king.
Serving suggestion: For us, there has got to be an egg on a toasted and buttered croissant and the yellow stuff must be all over everything.

Photo credit @penguarno via instagram

Phase 3

Phase 1 is ongoing and may inform your choices during this phase. Fruit juice may be enjoyed from this phase onwards. 
This phase is a sweet phase, easing us out of the savoury of the egg and into something entirely new. Once into this phase, it’s very difficult to go back, so make sure you have tied up all your loose ends from phase 2.
The system is simple: toasted and buttered bread (yes, always buttered, except if you are employing a nut butter spread), slices of cheese and jam on top; now eat forever.
For a touch of added complexity, spread half the surface with one jam, for example grape, and the other with orange rind. The zone of overlap is a joyous place where anything can happen. Bread choice is vital again. One can be more adventurous with bread at this point. Never forgo the opportunity to enjoy a toasted croissant with peanut butter and strawberry jam during this phase.
Serving suggestion: We lean towards grape jam, preferably with chunky grape chunks, but again the choices are endless and usually depend on the establishment in which you find yourself eating. 

Phase 4

At this point, depending on your level of experience, you may wish to skip straight to phase 5. Phase 1 is ongoing and may need replenishing. Tea may replace coffee during this phase.

Photo credit @pingy888 via instagram

Phase 4 is very simple, it’s a continuation of the previous phase, but with cream. Try a warm, buttered scone with strawberries (whole or chopped) and cream. This injection of whole, juicy fruit pieces is what carries us into the final phase. Warning: ensure tea is finished before moving on to phase 5.

Phase 5

Now we solemnly partake of the earth’s bounty by assembling a fruit salad. It sounds simple, but many seasoned breakfast eaters have over-zealously filled a bowl of fruit at the buffet table, only to find that there’s too much of one type of fruit; or worse too much of everything! Don’t waste. One or two pieces of each fruit should be fine; add a third of your favourite, you deserve it.
Yoghurt is essential to knit this phase together. If you want to take flavoured yoghurt it’s your funeral. At least choose something that suits the fruit.

Photo credit @pankomies via instagram

Serving suggestion: Plain Bulgarian yoghurt all day. You may be thinking: “ Don’t yoghurt, muesli and fruit belong at the beginning?”. If you think that, you’re a rookie and that’s okay. Everyone is a rookie at some point. 
Travel tip: After eating your fill, make a ‘to-go’ sandwich to hold you over until lunch. That way you can save some money and keep exploring!

Special mention: Breakfast in Vietnam

If you are planning a trip to South East Asia soon, or specifically Vietnam, there’s something you should know. These people know how to buffet. Many hotels include breakfast in the cost of your room, so make sure you get involved. You can expect an outlandish fusion of English (bacon, eggs, sausage, toast and tea), continental (cold meats, croissants, cheese and coffee) and Asian (stir fry, fried rice, noodles and fresh fruits and juices).

Where to find the buffet at home

As a traveller, check whether your hotel offers free breakfast buffet as part of the price for the room. If you are looking for a breakfast buffet experience closer to home, here are a few suggestions.


Moyo (Parkview and Melrose Arch) has a delicious breakfast buffet on Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays from 8.30am to 11am for R119 per person.

Photo credit @restaurants_sa vie instagram

Cape Town

Moyo, again, putting up its hand, this time in the Mother city. Just another excuse to get lost in Kirstenbosch Gardens.

Photo credit @moyo_kirstenbosch via instagram


RJ’s Steakhouse in Morningside offers a well priced breakfast buffet at R65 per person.

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All information on this blog page was correct at the time of publishing and may change at any time without prior notice. Travelstart will not be held liable for loss or inconvenience resulting from the use of out-dated or incorrectly noted information.

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