I always get a little concerned when South Africans try to make America South African. Crab shack? BBQ? Yes we know these terms, but coin them as braais and fish rolls. A slice of New Orleans has however arrived in Cape Town, with its own South African twist. Enter: The Deckhouse Crab Shack & BBQ.
A great place for a sundowner on the ever au courant Kloof Street, The Deckhouse has replaced what used to be Jackal & Hyde with a casual, seaside themed eatery, complete with hanging fishing nets and white-washed furniture and boasting a shellfish-centric menu. Relax on the deck as Table Mountain turns pink with the setting sun, before donning your complimentary bib and tucking into fried, fishy and full flavoured fare.
Starting off with cornbread and jalapeños on a stick (R50), crammed full of cream cheese and deep fried in corn batter with a sweet chili dipping sauce – seriously though, I consider myself a popper queen and these are some of the best ever – we moved onto more robust mains.
Surf and turfing it, Bernard had ribs and prawns with cornbread and potato fries (R110), while I had crab and shrimp nachos lathered in guacamole and sour cream (R75). The food isn’t mind blowing, and despite being the city’s first official crab shack, doesn’t offer anything we aren’t already used to seeing – apart from, maybe, crab. It’s a cool vibe, and crab cakes paired with a jug of Pimms and lemonade on a sweltering hot summer’s day – it’ll be the place to visit.
You can also choose from bar ‘buckets’, with favourites such as shrimp popcorn and crayfish tails; steampots; crab buckets to get things crackin’ and the ultimate BBQ menu. Guests are encouraged to be as messy as possible, so although cutlery is provided it’s so much fun to get sticky fingers stuck in. Go with a group of friends, take up a whole booth, order jug after jug of Pimms or margarita and feast on CRAB like it’s nobody’s business.