Launch of the new Samsung Galaxy S23 Series

This week I attended the launch of the new Samsung Galaxy S23 Series at Artistry in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. unveiled the Galaxy S23 Ultra, Galaxy S23+, and Galaxy S23, marking a new era of Galaxy’s ultimate premium phone experience. Samsung Galaxy’s most epic camera gives users more freedom to explore their creativity, like capturing truly cinematic Nightography videos with transformative artificial intelligence (AI). The Snapdragon® 8 Gen 2 Mobile Platform for Galaxy unleashes a future-ready mobile gaming experience and powerfully sustained game play, supported by exclusive chipset enhancements made possible by Samsung’s close collaboration with Qualcomm. Galaxy S23 series’ new standard-setting innovations are housed within a striking design that advances Samsung’s sustainability commitment with the more recycled materials of any Galaxy smartphone.

“The most impactful technology is measured, not just by what it enables for people today, but also how it contributes to a better future,” said TM Roh, President and Head of Mobile eXperience Business at Samsung Electronics. “Galaxy S23 Ultra and the entire Galaxy S series line-up are the new standard-bearers of a trustworthy premium smartphone experience that merges industry-leading innovation and future-forward sustainability.”

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New Host for Ultimate Braai Master (Season 8)

Tapfuma Makina, one of South Africa’s favourite news and sports anchors, has been announced as the new Ultimate Braai Master (UBM) host for Season 8 (S8).

Rhodes University scholar, Tapfuma Makina’s plans to continue on and study medicine after completing his BSc in Biochemistry and Microbiology changed direction after becoming a presenter on campus radio revealed a natural talent for storytelling.

Now, after almost two decades in radio and television, as well as hosting and presenting premieres and awards across sports, enterprise and entertainment, broadcasting is in his professional DNA.

His distinctive voice, familiar to many from HeartFM, Top Billing, eNCA and beyond, has captured many SA broadcasting highlights in recent years.

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Urchin Makes Waves in Cape Town’s Culinary Scene

The culinary panorama in the Mother City has been elevated with the opening of Urchin Restaurant, located at The Hyatt Regency Cape Town on Buitengracht Street.

There is a complexity to achieving true simplicity in a restaurant setting. It is an art. At Urchin Restaurant it is a beautifully and precisely choreographed ballet in which sustainable fresh fish and seafood are the prima and danseur. The hallmarks of the Urchin elemental ocean dining experience are underpinned by excellent, unobtrusive service, locally sourced and produced ingredients, and world class wine from a carefully curated wine cellar.

The Chef

Throughout his life, Chef Gerard van Staden has strived to achieve greatness within his chosen field, and so far, his personality and inquisitiveness have allowed him to achieve many great things in South Africa and abroad. Growing up in a single parent family in Zimbabwe, Gerard taught himself to cook out of necessity, not knowing that he was following a path which would eventually lead him to becoming acclaimed Chef of the Year on three occasions, alongside South Africa’s Number One restaurant in two different locations.

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Just Teddy Unveiled in Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton

I recently attended the launch of the fine boutique pâtisserie and boulangerie Just Teddy in Nelson Mandela Square. The event was spectacular, with belly dancers showing off their mystical moves, which mesmerized those in attendance.

Just Teddy is renowned for having redefined heritage haute cuisine, curating a fashion-inspired fusion of Parisian delights fused with Middle Eastern flair. Now, visitors to Nelson Mandela Square can savour and experience the luxury café dining and world-class confectionery creations that accompany Just Teddy’s signature savoir-faire, with a new dining destination that was unveiled recently in Africa’s richest square mile.

The emerald of Nelson Mandela Square, Just Teddy, takes its Middle Eastern flavour even further.  The décor was inspired by the chic decadence of Dubai, offering purveyors of fine banqueting everything the brand is renowned for, and more, now with a sumptuous dinner menu added to the bespoke experience. Additionally, a champagne bar and semifreddo station will add to the exclusive artistry of the Nelson Mandela Square experience.

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Sandton City Launches Iconic Festive Season Campaign

Tansey Coetzee & daughter Peyton with Santa Claus at Sandton City

As the festive lights start sparkling, and families start counting down to the upcoming holidays, South Africa’s most iconic shopping centre, Sandton City, has unveiled its festive season campaign. Titled The Festive City, it’s everything Christmas dreams are made of, featuring the most sought-after brands and more.

For starters, the centre court (outside Checkers) will play host to festive brand immersions for shoppers of all ages, by two beloved brands. LEGO®’s zone will feature a maze filled with ever changing play zones, once-in-a-lifetime building experiences, a chance to also add your brick to the South African flag build, two LEGO® brick pits, a Duplo zone for the small ones and the chance to shop the latest LEGO® collections with promotional offers.

The Little Generosity Shop by Cadbury Dairy Milk will provide you with ways to spread generosity and kindness. Here, you can donate toys to children in need, enjoy a reading corner, get Cadbury’s branded gift wrapping and do exclusive shopping in a generous chocolate world filled with treats.

Santa Claus himself will make his much-anticipated arrival to Sandton City on the 1st of December and will also be stationed in the centre court, where photo opportunities and merchandise extensions will make any heart sing.

Fan favourite brand Chuckles® will stage a Life’s a Ball activation on level 6 outside Woolworths. Visitors to this area will be able to shop the exclusive Chuckles gifting range, and personalise their Chuckles purchases right there, making these gifts even more special.

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First Circle K Convenience Store Opens in South Africa

South Africa’s first Circle K convenience store, now open in eastern Pretoria, is a precursor to a multi-store roll out in the coming months and part of a bigger forecourt deal with Puma Energy which will give access to over one hundred sites across South Africa.

Millat Convenience and Puma energy concluded an agreement that will see an accelerated roll out of Circle K stores on Puma Energy forecourts across the country.

The agreement is a clear sign of the confidence two major international brands have in South Africa’s future in the short term and could create around 2000 jobs.

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Winners of the 2022 Eat Out Woolworths Restaurant Awards

Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen, John Norris-Rogers & Siv Pillay

The top restaurants in South Africa were announced at the 2022 Eat Out Woolworths Restaurant Awards on Sunday 20 November at GrandWest in Cape Town. The industry was celebrated in a spectacular display of gourmet food, creative drinks and top-notch entertainment, which had over 700 guests, including some of SA’s favourite celebrities, on their feet.

The new star rating system results were announced, with restaurants being awarded either one, two or three stars. To be included on the shortlist, each restaurant had to achieve a minimum rating of 70 points out of 100. This was based on several factors, including the quality of their offering – from the décor, ambience and service to the wine list, ingredients used and quality of the food. One star was awarded to those restaurants who scored 70 – 80, two stars to those scoring 80 – 90, and three stars to those scoring 90+, with Restaurant of the Year awarded to the establishment with the highest score.

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Signature High Tea by Just Teddy for a limited time at The Winston Hotel

If you have been craving for a decadent high tea served in a luxurious garden setting, then I have good news for you!

A drool-worthy collaboration between two bespoke brands, The Winston Hotel and Just Teddy Fine Boulangerie & Pâtisserie, has resulted in a high tea experience with a curated menu that will raise the bar in the high tea sector to new heights.

Jo’burgers will be familiar with the Just Teddy brand, who also have a busy restaurant in Hyde Park Corner. I’ve been before and enjoyed a beautiful lunch. But now you can experience their famous high tea in the tranquil garden setting of The Winston Hotel.

Commencing the weekend of 29 October, High Tea by Just Teddy will be served in two sittings every Saturday and Sunday for a limited time only at The Winston Hotel in Rosebank, Johannesburg. This unique partnership between the Millat Investments owned hotel and Just Teddy in an ideal, classic hotel setting is synonymous with the best high tea venues globally. This high-end “pop-up” style experience breaks new ground in developing unique high tea experiences with quality beverages and food within a classic, indoor / outdoor setting.

Served in the lounge area / courtyard of The Winston Hotel, this curated high tea menu by Just Teddy is a fitting farewell to The Winston as we know it. In June 2022, Millat Investments acquired The Winston Hotel and signed an agreement with Hyatt Hotels that will see The Winston Hotel rebranded to the luxury Park Hyatt brand. Extensive refurbishment is scheduled to commence at the beginning of December, and the hotel will officially re-open as the Park Hyatt Johannesburg in early 2023.

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La Parada Tapas Bar opens in Rosebank, Johannesburg

Last week I attended the media launch of La Parada Tapas Bar in The Firs Centre, Rosebank, Johannesburg. It was a colourful night, filled with ladies in feathers and lots of food and drinks!

La Parada has about 8 branches nationally with Rosebank being the most recent launch. It is known for its tapas, which is an appetizer or snack in Spanish cuisine. Tapas may be cold or hot. In some bars and restaurants in Spain and across the globe, tapas have evolved into a more sophisticated cuisine. Tapas can be combined to make a full meal and it is a social type of cuisine, ideal for sharing. We were able to taste a selection of the tapas, that were served by waiters floating around the floor. The prawns were my favourite, followed by the tantalising pizzas and sliders.          

                                               

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Ultramel Turns 50 & Launches New Milkshake Range

I’m a big fan of custard, and in particular Ultramel custard. My favourite way to enjoy it, is with canned pears – my mouth is watering just writing this sentence!

Everyone has their favourite UltraMel custard moment, reminiscent of all the great memories created with friends and family for generations. Having enjoyed 5 decades of being Mzansi’s favourite custard, it’s time to shake things up with Ultra Mel’s new and exciting full cream milkshake variants.

Social media has been abuzz with the question “How do you UltraMel?” … Red or green jelly? Vanilla or cinnamon? Hot or cold? Malva or Trifle? Big or small spoon? However you UltraMel, everyone has memory-filled stories to share.


If the original UltraMel is anything to go by, it’s time to indulge in great tasting milkshakes and create some more memories, whether you’re in the streets of eKasi or the suburbs of Sandton. No matter which flavour moves you more, chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry, you’re bound to find a firm favourite. The new thick and creamy range will be sure to deliver joy in every drop!


“We’re excited to be introducing South Africans to the new way to UltraMel – bringing all of the exceptional taste heritage you’ve come to love over the last 50 years into this new, fun, anytime treat.” said Lazola Dali, Marketing Manager: Local Icons, Danone Southern Africa.


With the iconic brand celebrating its 50th Birthday this year, the new product launch marks an important milestone for the UltraMel family and is a great prelude to the astounding anniversary.

The new UltraMel Thick & Creamy Milkshakes are convenient and embody a rich, delightful taste that allows for an anytime and any occasion treat.


With a long shelf life, you can have a few of the 275ml milkshakes stocked up for those daily on-the-go moments. Packaged in 70% recycled PET plastic and priced from R15,99, this new range is available nationwide at all leading supermarkets and even your nearest fuel station.


After 50 golden & creamy years, Mzansi’s families have a tasty new way to “Ultra Mel” and enjoy their favourite dessert – old school or new school, glug or straw, spoon or shake… either way, it’s certainly still the tasty experience of joy in every drop that you have come to love.

Check out my Instagram or TikTok for the press drop video – @mishkah7 on both platforms.