First taste: Banks Burgers in Newlands

This stylish new burger bar, Banks Burgers, offers the type of food you’d expect from a fast food chain restaurant like McDonalds, but, as Eat Out critic Ashraf Booley pleasantly discovers, is a far cry from it.

A close-up of Bank's buns. Photo supplied.

A close-up of Bank’s buns. Photo supplied.

If cheeseburgers and fries are of the few acceptable foods from McDonald’s that would actually pass your lips, then you’re no doubt pleased that more fast-casual eateries like Banks Burgers are popping up – that is, takeaway-style food without the nasties.

Fast facts

Main course average: R70 to R100
Parking: There is usually on-street parking available
Food type: Burgers and fries
Best for: A quick bite, a casual date or dinner with the crew
Star rating: food 4, service 4, ambience 5


Shall I compare thee to Junior? Yes and no. Having adopted a similar concept to the aforementioned, Banks Burgers offers fast food made fresh, minus the additives and preservatives. However, their take (aways) has its own unique flavour.

The burger with felafel patty. Photo supplied.

The 50/50 burger with a beef and felafel patty. Photo supplied.

I unwrap my hamburger to discover gloriously golden brioche buns, and true to the words displayed on the glass exterior of the store – we love big buns – they’re fresh, thick and squishy, exuding the aroma of homemade bread. Between them are a dripping-juicy pure-beef patty, a slice of cheese, slightly crunchy pickles, caramelised onion (fresh onion is an option, too) and a secret sauce that leaves my tastebuds wondering. All in all, it hits the spot. The single is filling enough, but you can order the double or triple at a few rand extra. I tuck into both the potato and sweet-potato fries (skin on, which is never a bad idea in my books). They’re delicious, but turn out to be a tad too oily.

Another burger option. Photo supplied.

Another burger option. Photo supplied.

Ultimately, it’s the Butcher’s Daughter burger that’s after my own heart, featuring an incredibly tasty falafel patty with all the trimmings, sandwiched between brioche buns. The guy at the counter remarks that it’s in its experimental phase, but it gets a thumbs-up from me.

For the carb-conscious there’s a no-bun option and, if fries are not your thing, try the house slaw.


The simple shakes come in four flavour variants, strawberry, chocolate, vanilla and malt. I opt for the strawberry milkshake, which is satisfyingly sweet and creamy, but doesn’t quite bring all the boys to the yard. Freshly brewed Beaver Creek Coffee is also on offer, if caffeine is what you need.

The restaurant follows the recent trend towards fast-casual eateries. Service is at the counter. Photo supplied.

The restaurant follows the recent trend towards fast-casual eateries. Service is at the counter. Photo supplied.


Like Junior, Banks works on a self-service system, which means they don’t offer table service. Your orders are taken at the counter and you can take a seat while your food is being freshly prepared. The service is speedy and just the right level of friendly.

The stylish interior. Photo supplied.

The stylish interior. Photo supplied.


The décor and design elements are minimalist yet cosy, with a nod to retro-chic. The colours are a quirky mix of bright orange and cool aqua hues, which add a warm and playful element. There’s also lots of natural light pouring in, which is great for snapping those Instagram pictures – or simply for soaking up some sun.


Counter servers offer speedy, friendly service. Photo supplied.


There’s a 50/50 option, which allows you to have a half-beef, half-falafel burger. It comes highly recommended by the staff.

Have you been to the southern suburbs’ new Banks Burgers? Give them a rating out of five stars for food, ambience and service and put them in the running for the 2016 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries. Write a review now.

Eat Out critics dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.

The Banks menu includes a banting option. Photo supplied.

The Banks menu includes a banting option. Photo supplied.


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