There is a special place on earth for simple, delicious, well-made food. That place might be Parktown North. Over the years, Parktown has been home to a series of dedicated restaurateurs, The Foundry is one such scion.
Start with their bites, such as zucchini fries or citrus olives. Or whet your appetite with a small plate of Jamaican jerk barbecue ribs or jalapeño chicken livers. Popular mains include half spit-roasted chicken served with fries or a meze salad, and accompanied by a peri-peri, lemon or mustard and garlic sauce. If you are sharing, the meat tasting board, which includes crispy wing skewers, Jamaican jerk ribs, pork belly strips, lamb koftas and pumpkin ale fritters, is a perennial favourite. The rump and rocket salad should satiate all of your desires: the matured rump, cut into strips, is tender and well basted, and the salad, a bed of pickled radish, caramelised baby onions, feta, tomatoes and spinach with a chilli-balsamic reduction, defines perfection. The hand-cut fries, cut to the perfect size, are perfectly crispy and seasoned. If you leave space for dessert, the honeycomb affogato (honeycomb gelato and single-origin espresso) will be the sweetest way to seal your meal.
The drinks list is varied and of an excellent standard. From beer on tap, such as Soweto Gold to bottled beer, which includes old faithfuls like Castle Lite, the offering is broad. Cocktails are made at the inhouse bar and include colourful options such as the Me & Mr Jones, a wonder of Monkey Shoulder, pear liqueur and lemongrass. Various wines pair well with the meaty fare.
From a welcoming hello, to a kind and attentive ear, the service is unfailing.
Enjoy cool side-walk views under yellow umbrellas and hanging pot-plants, or venture inside where a relief artwork looms over brickwork. The indoor area also has a hanging screen and projector, which is perfect for birthday celebrations, unusual meeting spaces or ambient functions.
Spectacular greens and grains to accompany well-made steaks – and possibly the best hand-cut chips in Parktown North.
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A firm favourite as a starter is the tuna ceviche served in a crunchy taco topped with trout caviar, sesame oil, avocado, ginger and a side of soy sauce. They taste like delicious mouthfuls of an over-the-top California roll – in a good way. There are also the crispy squid heads with harissa aioli and baby back ribs with plum and oyster mushroom sauce, sesame and spring onions. Another appetising starter is the roasted bone marrow and mushroom with onions and marmalade toast.
The ‘planks’ work well for sharing and are served with wood-fired sourdough flatbread with a selection of Jamaican Jerk ribs and chips by the kilo or half kilo; a tasting board with ribs, wings, pork belly, albondigas, pumpkin ale fritter and chimichurri mielies; and charcuterie and formaggi.
Moving onto the mains, there’s a tempting array of succulent beef and ostrich fillet, springbok shanks and mushroom ravioli with brown butter, spring onions, sage and truffle sauce and pine nuts. Pizzas are made with thin crusts and fancy toppings such as pulled pork butt, chorizo, bacon, fior di latte mozzarella and micro herbs; and vodka roasted tomato, oregano and fresh basil. None of the menu items disappoint – especially not the Belgian-style fresh mussels in a white wine sauce served with frites or sourdough bread.
Top it off with the warm chocolate fondant served with vanilla gelato, berry compote and crumbed ginger biscuits.
Ask about The Foundry’s very own brew called Franky Four Fingers, made with Pilsen malt and brewed in a traditional German brewhouse. Other than that and an endless list of craft beers, lagers and ales, there’s a wide and solid selection of champagne, sparkling wine and wine on offer, including dessert wine. Every palate is catered for.
You might need to flag over a different waiter to the one who was originally assigned to you because the restaurant gets full to capacity. But wait staff is always more than willing to oblige.
With an outside area and an expansive restaurant interior, it gets surprisingly full and jovial with larger group tables and romantic tête-à-têtes.
The all-day roast accompanied by live music is worth a visit on a Sunday. It features Karoo lamb on the spit, roast potatoes and wood-fired vegetables. And no, it’s not bottomless – one plate per person. Also pop round the back, where you can watch a match on the big screen.
Eat Out critics dine unannounced and pay for their meals in full. Read our full editorial policy here.