Have you had the Western Cape’s best burger?

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Want to know where to find the best burger in the Western Cape? It’s official: it’s to be found at De Vrije in Stellenbosch. De Vrije was voted by you as the Eat Out Hellmann’s Best Burger Eatery at the 2019 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries. Eat Out reader Mart Haasbroek says, “I compare all burgers to this and nothing compares! All options are to die for.”

After Mart’s high praise, we just had to send one of our critics to De Vrije to try the amazing burgers too. Read all about what won them the top spot.


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This is the way all fast food should taste. It reminds you of a New York-style hole-in-the-wall burger joint, but the flavour is quirky South African. Celebrated chef Bertus Basson added De Vrije Burger to his restaurant repertoire in 2018 and it has become a favourite for many visitors.

Fast facts

Cost: R100 for a burger with fries
Parking: On the street
Star ratings: Food and drinks: 5; Service: 5; Ambience: 5


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You can choose a De Jonge Burger (no trimmings – just the beef patty, cheese and bread), but will then miss out on the joy that is the De Vrije build-your-burger experience. When placing your order, you can choose whether the patty should still be pink in the middle or more well done. Optional add-ons include smoked chilli sauce, bacon or Melrose and biltong. There’s the Uitpakslaai (described – for those who don’t remember Sunday lunch salads at your tannie’s house – as a traditional South African salad with creamy dressing), and soft serve ice cream with hundreds and thousands for dessert. The hand-cut potato tjips is offered three different ways – BBQ-spice dusted, cheesy or peri-peri.


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The burger is overwhelmingly big when you take it out of the branded brown bag. The size of the 200g 100% free-range beef patty easily equates to what some chain take-out spots would offer as a double and comes with lettuce, tomato, double cheese and pickles. Word of warning: this is messy eating! So probably not ideal for a first date.


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With every burger bought you get a voucher for a free ice cream.


Wines are available by the bottle and also in a 250ml carafe. The very reasonably priced carafe of 2018 Gabrielskloof chenin blanc rounds off your burger meal perfectly. You can also have a craft beer (Windpomp lager and Leiwater ale from Black Mountain microbrewery are on offer).


You order at the counter and take your own food to your table (seating is available for about 20 people max).


It’s trendy and alternative – in line with the music that drifts from the speakers inside. De Vrije Burger draws customers of all ages, but appeals to a younger crowd with discerning taste. It’s an interesting mix between a fast-food joint and Posh Bosch staple.


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Best for…

Late-night munchies – gourmet-style.

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

Have you visited De VrijeLet us know in the comments below or review your experience using our free app

Only the best will bring out the best!

Hellmann’s is the title sponsor of the Best Burger Eatery category at the 2019 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries. With its rich, creamy taste, thick dollopy texture and simple, real ingredients, Hellmann’s Original mayonnaise has always promised to bring out the best in any burger.

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