The Furnace comes with plenty of creativity

BY TRACEY WILTSHIRE - SEPTEMBER 11, 2016

What a perfect afternoon I enjoyed at The Furnace, the relatively new restaurant on the Shafli Road in Crossways, just north of East London.  Such delicious food in a beautiful restaurant with a breath-taking view – truly amazing.

You can tell that a lot of thought went into the décor and layout, it’s refreshingly a bit different from the norm, I really loved the colourful wooden panelling on the walls because they tie in perfectly with the red chairs and green bar stools. The bunches of black, hanging,  bulb pendants give it that retro, cosmopolitan feel and then the glazed white table tops and light stone floor work perfectly in balancing the funky, rustic look by giving it a touch of class and a freshness of design.

There are beautifully made, white, wooden tables on the veranda which overlooks the clear waters of a very busy dam filled with ducks, fish and terrapins.  There is also a nice jungle gym and swings for the kids as well as an inside play area that’s spacious and light.

I had the mussel pot starter and it was probably the best I have ever had - creamy and packed full of muscles, the flavour was really delicious. It was served with a crisp pita and a herbed garlic butter with a bite, the perfect combination of flavour.  By this stage I was quite full so I opted for a salad which was fresh and crisp and topped with seared fillet, sweet pepper dews and fresh green avo and feta. I give them an emphatic 10/10 for this meal.  Others at my table ordered a pizza, a steak and a burger. Everyone was very happy with the presentation, the quality of food, the portion sizes and the flavour.

I spent some time chatting to Warren, one of the co-owners of The Furnace. I asked him about the origins and inspiration for this lovely restaurant. 

He said, “A few months back I was approached by my now partners, Craig Lutge and Dawie Van der Vyver. They were wanting to open a family orientated eatery in the Crossways area, something upmarket yet affordable. After much thought and a little deliberation I accepted the challenge and The Furnace was born.

“The name was quite inspirational because a few months back the packing shed at Glendale Tomatoes burnt down and myself and a friend went past to have a look. The heat had been so intense that the big I beams had melted into perfect F's. As soon as I saw them I knew that I wanted them in the restaurant as décor.

“Later in the day I was having a braai with friends and I was telling them the story of the heat, the F shaped steel and my plans for a restaurant and, in a moment of creativity, The Furnace was suggested and it stuck.”

When I asked about the layout and interior design, Warren explained, “The decor was based loosely on the name itself with a little old school and a little new. All wood work was done by Craig Young, who is hugely talented and has a knack of taking my ideas and making them work. “

“Another mention must be Carla van der Vyver who helped a great deal on decor ideas and colour schemes.”

Warren added about the food, “When creating the menu, I tried to go for something a little different; from the way we serve our desserts to the presentation of our burgers and the toppings on our pizza. It was basically a three month swop and change until the recipes were as they are today.”

“The way the Crossways community has accepted us in has been amazing and it really is a little slice of paradise out here,” concluded Warren.

The Furness has Wi-Fi, a generator in case of emergencies, an espresso coffee machine and is child and wheelchair friendly.  There is plenty of outdoor space for smokers and the menu caters for vegetarian and Banting diets.

For more information on the opening times I would suggest you consult their Facebook page and it would be best to make a reservation.  See you there!

Contact on The Furnace on 043 737 0001 to make your reservation.