Home cooked Cape Malay-style curry is what keeps patrons coming back and regulars calling D6 their “second home”. Creating mildly hot yet rich, spicy curries is the main preoccupation of chef-owner and waiter, Grace Fourie. She has tweaked and personalized each of the dishes to perfection. As a result, the lamb curry (the most popular dish here) is fall-off-the-bone sumptuous, served with two generous bowls of steaming rice. Sambals include a sweet and sour sauce, a refreshing cucumber salad and beetroot to offset and complement the rich flavours of the lamb. Other specials include tripe curry, sourced (as a favour) by Famous Brands for the restaurant, waterblommetjie bredie (which is a seasonal offering and also contains lamb, apple and potatoes) and boboties served in quantities fit for a very hungry giant. Only if you’re ordering the main meal to share – or already have plans to enjoy leftovers later – should you order the flavoursome Malay samoosas as starters. Then perhaps you’d also have space for the milktert and warm, freshly made koe’susters (two per serving) as an after-dinner treat to be enjoyed their strong cup of coffee. The pumpkin fritters (two in a portion) also come highly recommended, the recipe for which has been published by a national newspaper – and mounted as a talking point alongside family photographs and glitzy Cape Carnival costumes.
The rather meagre line-up of wines on the menu includes a selection from Arabella, Wolftrap, Welgemoed and Porcupine. Beers and spirits are also on offer.
The warmth and friendly service by Fourie, and the obious pride in what they serve, makes you feel like you could be breaking bread at your aunt’s house.
It’s an authentic homage to the Cape Malay aesthetic. The décor is colourful and festive with a vibrant palette of lime green and orange.
No oil is used in the preparation of the curries – rather, a slow cooking method is at the order of the day, which makes for healthier eating, proven to tenderize tougher cuts and bring out the full flavour of the meat and spices.
Starters are of such a nature that one can easily share a few per table, such as the traditional Malay samoosas, which are slightly milder in flavour than Indian samoosas. Other starters are the smoked snoek cocktail (which resembles a Russian salad with fish added), and the obligatory – and delicious – pickled fish. Main courses are all served with white or yellow rice (rotis may be ordered at an additional charge) and a little tray with four sambals: beetroot, tomato, chutney and a chilli paste. Apart from the regular main items there are a number of lovely specials including smoorsnoek, crayfish curry, trotters and tripe, waterblommetjie bredie (with green apple, potatoes and lamb) and buttered chicken. Bobotie is served in quite generous portions, while the highly spiced lamb denningvleis is worth returning for again and again. Apart from a legendary melktert, other desserts include the ubiquitous malva pudding, but also lemon fridge tart, Malay koesisters and pumpkin fritters.
As is the case at most eating houses, there is a large beverage cooler at the back of the restaurant where you can view what's available. While the selection of wines is not big, it does include some solid choices such as Porcupine Ridge. A small espresso machine lurks in the back for those that can't leave without a caffeine fix.
This is one of those little places where a table close to the kitchen will be occupied by a group of family and close friends of the owners, enjoying a Sunday lunch. The flamboyant owner/hostess Grace Fourie seems to be able to seat guests, take and deliver orders, and even accompany guests to the loos without batting an eye. Grace might introduce herself rather formally on your first visit, but rest assured that there will be hugs and kisses by the time you leave. She is as colourful and fun as the décor and the food, which is a valuable part of our cultural heritage. District Six understands what hospitality is all about and while they have stated open times, they really only close when the last guest has had enough and feels it is time to go home.
The service counter at the back of the room is filled with a lovely collection of teapots and other crockery, tables are dressed in vibrant plastic tablecloths and a large chandelier overhead provides gravitas. Walls are decorated with all sorts of memorabilia: a row of red fezzes; some bright and shiny Kaapse Klopse uniforms; and a block of framed photos of friends and family. This tiny restaurant is located among other shops that should excite any food lover, such as the fantastic spice shop and grocer across the street.
While a framed restaurant review proclaims that Districts Six serves the best milk tart in Johannesburg, some may go as far to suggest that theirs may be the best in the country. Expect a generously proportioned slice filled with luscious folds of cinnamon custard with just the right amount of quiver, and enjoy it to a soundtrack ranging from Barry White to gospel.
Most delicious food ever! Loved the warm homely feel! Thanks for a wonderful evening!
Had the most magnificent dinner at D6 in Emmarentia last night - food was deliciously spiced and served with love and care and great attention to detail. The Denningvleis was so tasty and the best melktert I've had in years and years! We'll be going back there very soon.
Had the privilege of dining at D6 Eatery in Emmarentia last week. The owners Grace and Emmanuel are warm and friendly, and the food is honestly life-changing. Good wholesome meals cooked with love and attention, a warm and cosy restaurant where you actually feel welcome, a nice change from the sterile environments you often experience in most modern restaurants.
Will definitely be back, and will be recommending to all my friends.
Our local favourite - great personal service, excellent no nonsense food and if you are looking for some entertainment, book for a fun Friday night of a mix of stand-up and songs...a Jozi gem.
District disaster is the only way I can describe the experience.
Our waiter presented the starter consisting of the house salad with a variety of samoosas. We had a verge retrain amongst our party who asked about the vegeterian options on the plate and his response was that , "they plate it and I serve it can't tell you which is which and it's a hit or miss thing ma'am". Then only to find out that the waiter is actually the owner. Should have known after a comment like that that the culinary experience for the rest of the evening would not pan out well. The boboetie that I ordered was presented on my plate as a globular mass of fatty meat, the quality of which was attempted to be diguised with an incredible amount of spices and was ineddible. The stemmed veggies that accompanied the boboetie were equally ineddible, the baby marrows were clearly old as they were bitter and spoiled the rest of the veggies.
Topping the distastrous tour of the Cape Malay cuisine (not that you could call what we ate cuisine) was the dessert platter - the koeksisters were stale approaching rancid, the Malva pudding was dry and lifeless and the custard was the equivalent of what is served at a boarding school mess!
The only redeeming thing of the evening is the fact that's it's BYO - however the good quality wine was spoiled by the sub-standard quality of food that was on offer!
A really great dinner. Fantastic cosy environment! Makes me homesick , but in a really good way. The samoosas were sublime, the tomato bredie was excellently flavoured and the Roti literally melted in our mouths! Proper Cape Malay koeksisters finished off a great meal. We will be back!
The food is brilliant, best curry in Johannesburg. Don't come here for a rushed meal, take your time and eat all there courses. The samoosas are the best ever and the salad is super. Highly recommended.
Dear Jutta. You must have had a bad night out. I'm sad that you had such an unsatisfactory experience at D6 Eatery. Clarence and I make sure that our customers leave fulfilled. I'm sorry that your bobotie was 'dry and overcooked'. I'm not sure why you felt that way. You should have told us. Out of interest sake we do not have a microwave in our kitchen in order to 'nuke' food and we do not serve any frozen food in our restaurant, we do not even have a freezer that can accomodate such frozen items. Our coffee is not filtered and brewed and watered down but is made from fresh Napoli Coffee beans supplied by Caturra, which we then grind as required by customers and made in our DeLonghi Espresso coffee machine. Next time say that you like it strong and we make it strong, or extra strong. We make to your liking. Call me so that we can discuss your 'bad' food experience. Looking forward to hearing from you. Romano (Co-owner) D6 Eatery, 082 337 2187 / 011 486 7226
I really hope this was just a bad night for the restaurant, but the meal that was served up last night probably ranks among the worst I have eaten ever. The bobotie was dry, overcooked, nuked beyond recognition (the custard had long collapsed on itself), served with frozen vegetables. The coffee must have been brewing on the hot place all day and thinned down with some boiling water before serving! If it hadn't been for the great service and the great vibe, we would have left after the already disastrous starters. Please tell us that this really was a bad night - it would be a huge pity for such a great little place to go down in the culinary hall of shame.
I celebrated my birthday there on 26 August and Clarence and Romano were the perfect hosts and the food and service were excellent!