Last year I initiated the discussion about Halaal food seriously needing an upgrade. Not to replace existing traditions, but to transport a segment of the cuisine in the modern era. Don’t misunderstand me. I’m not asking for traditional food to be done away with, but to rather have a wider portfolio. Just because I’m British decent doesn’t mean I can only eat ‘bangers and mash’ and roast beef every day! Variety is key people. Restaurants like Kahve Road and Woodies have taken this to heart. Modern, fun food, but all Halaal.
[Pictures by Team Team Photography. Please do not use without permission.]
The latest edition to this remixed cuisine is Brocka. Immediately eye-catching at entrance 8 in Canal Walk, I was intrigued when they invited me to try their food. And, straight off the bat, I didn’t even know it was Halaal. This is a good thing! Unfortunately, whether people like it or not, styles of food does result in some gatekeeping. People have predisposed ideas about how food is (partially reinforced by the same traditional styles only being available), but this new set of Halaal food is great!
Mr John and I headed to the restaurant after a “LITTLE” bit after a late night and were warmly welcomed. We were pleased to see that the prices were affordable and promote both an easy sit down while shopping and a take away option. Their menu is simple and well structured; offering American fare in ribs, burgers, milkshakes and waffles.
I ordered the chicken burger combo, which basically means you get a chicken burger, chips and a pop. Mr John ordered the ribs and a milkshake. I really enjoyed my burger even though they used that quintessential Cape Town chip space. WHAT IS THAT CHIP SPICE?! You know the one I mean. They use it, which I like, but also isn’t that unique. The burger was really good though and I loved my fresh avo.
Mr John enjoyed the ribs as they were soft and BBQy, but they did also taste a bit like methane which we didn’t love. Not sure if they were heated over an open flame or the flame wasn’t hot enough, but the gas did taint the taste a little bit. His milkshake was a treat, but all the toppings put on top so we suggest stirring them in to flavour the ‘milk’. They were very generous with their toppings.
The service at Brocka was good. Our server was attentive, polite and very helpful, what you want really. The open plan kitchen allows you to watch the cooks at work. Cleverly, they’ve included umbrellas because the sun can beat down from the mall ceiling so the umbrellas make a big difference.
Overall, we love the urban look and feel of Brocka. It’s a cool space, well located and offers a quick sit down or an easy take away – both handy when at a mall. Also, it’s not in the food court which makes a nice change. As you know, I’m not a big mall person, but it’s great to have something that’s modern and comfortable at Canal Walk.
Thank you Brocka for having us!
FACEBOOK REVIEWS: I see there have been a few negative reviews on Facebook so just to be clear. We opted to sit down so self-service didn’t come into play. We were given real knives and forks, so I’m not sure about bamboo. Our food wasn’t burnt, but do see note on rib flavour. When I return to Brocka; if they service has gone down, I will be sure to update this post. For now, however, I would be happy to return.