After what has seemed like an age, the bru’s of Burger Brews were back doing what we do best – eating burgers, drinking beers, and then telling you what we think! This time, at the behest of one of the bru’s who lives in Noordhoek, we made the trek into the deep south and visited Jakes on the Common situated, as the name suggests, next to the Noordhoek Common. Having been to the other Jakes restaurant in Tokai (Jakes in the Village) a number of times, we expected only good things – and, man, did they deliver!
We chose to go on a Tuesday night which is when they run their “Burger and Band” night. What this translates to is a 2 for 1 special on any of their BEEF burgers and a live performance by a talented musician. We were thrown a curveball from the outset when one of the bru’s couldn’t make it which would’ve meant us not being able to take full advantage of the 2 for 1 special – so we used one of our lifelines and we phoned a friend (I realise that this may need to be explained to some of the younger readers – go to Google and type in “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” where all will be explained J). This night had now become a Burger Brews first as we were joined by a guest reviewer!
On arrival, we were instantly greeted by the restaurants’ funky décor right in the entrance-way. A shell of a backseat of a car with perfectly cushioned seating provided a glimpse of what was to come – a truly impressive and well thought out, well decorated space. The musician on the night was Ashley (or Ashleigh?) – who played guitar and sang with a soulful, beautiful voice throughout the night. We were soon seated and began enjoying our first beers of the night which was from the local Aegir Brewery. The beer was called California Steamin’ and it was, in a word, superb! We each were in agreement that we obviously needed to order another round of these before even contemplating trying something else. Mmmm – we were frothing as much as the beer was….
Food had been an after-thought by that point as we were enjoying the novelty of having a different “bru” in the mix. A number of times during conversation, I would stop and try to work out what song was being sung as Ashley sang well-known songs with her own unique arrangement. It was so much better than the karaoke copycat versions a lot of singers perform these days – great to listen to!
For our third rounds, one bru went for a Striped Horse Lager whilst the other three of us struggled to let go of the California Steamin’ and ordered another. We also ordered our starters of which we chose a portion of Chilli Poppers (Panko crumbed, filled with cream cheese) and a Tasting Platter for two (two each of Panko prawns; yunan ribs; chilli poppers; chicken pot stickers; Parma ham and cheese balls). Before the starters had arrived we were told that they had run out of stock of Aegir beer and, rather than ask our impressive waitress – Tallu – to take a run down the road to the Red Herring Centre to fetch a keg from the brewery, we decided to join our fellow bru and ordered a Striped Horse Lager.
When the starters had arrived, we were taken aback by how huge the poppers were. They were comfortably the largest we had experienced thus far in our reviews but, if you know anything about us, you’ll know that we were definitely not going to be complaining! All in all the starters were great with good variety. The only downer was that two of the bru’s who had the Parma ham balls thought that they didn’t work. Not sure what they had meant as in my experience these two components should definitely work. Perhaps the change of beer tweaked a muscle in their taste buds which caused them to go spastic. I will never know…
We then turned our attention to the main event – the burgers. Tallu suggested we go for the WHATTA BURGER (yes, spelt in caps on their menu) as it was their most popular burger. A quick read through the toppings soon explained why: Cheese, bacon, gherkins, port & mushroom sauce, crumbed feta, and crispy onions. Our guest bru and I went ahead and ordered it, minus the slices of (what the guest bru calls) “frogs’ back” ie gerkins.
The other two bru’s ordered the BCG Burger (Bacon, cheddar, guacamole) and the Classic American Burger (Mature cheddar, chipotle mayo, gherkins, onion rings). When the burgers arrived, they looked everything we had hoped they would be. The portions were large and were well presented. We soon got stuck into them and, needless to say, there wasn’t a lot of conversation around the table until we had finished – aside from the odd “oohhh”, “mmmmm” and “aahhh”.
When we had finished, it was time to think about heading home. Our “take me home” ride for the night was due to arrive any minute. Any minute then turned to 10 minutes, then 15 minutes. A quick call to them confirmed that they were looking for the restaurant on the wrong side of Chapmans Peak Drive – in Hout Bay! We were already the last table in the restaurant and the few staff remaining had begun to play a CD of a band of crickets. Tallu was great throughout and never made us feel like we had to get out and wait in the cold. She was everything a great waitron should be and Jakes is truly lucky to have her. As an aside, on our bill was written “#sendmetomexico” which, upon enquiring, was what Tallu was hoping for in order to be able to do a scuba diving course in Mexico. We, at Burger Brews truly hope her dreams come true and, with service like we experienced, she will get there soon – no doubt!
Beginnings – Lots of variety and great execution. A slight dissatisfaction from two of the bru’s with the Parma ham balls, though. 4.5
Burgers – Great choice on offer and they delivered in every aspect! 5
Beers – The beers we had were exceptional, and there was lots more choice besides. 4
Bringers – we were all extremely impressed by our waitress. She had a great personality and her efficiency was top-drawer. We often read about (and experience) poor service at restaurants in the Deep South, but she proved to be a breath of fresh air.5
Background – Very near a “full house”, probably due it being a themed evening. The singer was great and the combination of the unique décor, lighting, and general buzz made it a fantastic atmosphere. 5