The Fat Butcher

6 Reviews
Bistro fare, Steak, Vegetarian
Phone Number 0218828705 Opening Hours

Monday to Sunday 12noon to


Menu - Menu currently unavailable.
PDF - Menu July 2019 (006)


Bistro fare, Steak, Vegetarian
No corkage fee
Bar scene, Groups
Mastercard, Visa, Zapper
Accepts credit cards, Beer served, Child friendly, Cocktails, Dinner, Food, Licensed, Lunch, Parking, Serves food, Smoking, WiFi

Critic's review

  • Ambience
  • Service
  • Food

Ilse van der Merwe

The Fat Butcher represents the epitome of humankind’s culinary fascination with flame-grilled meat.

Open since 2016, this steakhouse is situated in the picturesque centre of historical, leafy Stellenbosch in a beautifully restored building adjacent to one of the oldest museums in town. A display at the entrance foyer confirms the name – there’s a large array of meat cuts, mostly matured, with some sliced as thick as a brick of butter.

The Fat Butcher has cemented itself as a firm local favourite across the board over the past three years. In a town filled with great eateries and discerning diners with generous budgets, it’s only immaculate consistency and quality that will win this kind of loyalty.

It’s the ‘when in Rome’ philosophy here – you’re going to have to order a steak (but there are indeed other options on the large menu). For an economical option, try the ever-satisfying 300g sirloin from the Prime Cut menu section, or the Bella burger served with chips or your choice of vegetables or baked potato. All steaks are decadently served with roasted marrow on the bone and your choice of chips/veg/potato. Try more luxurious cuts from the Signature Steaks section like The Grosvenor – steak aux champignons (fillet with foraged mushrooms, Dijon mustard, sherry, white truffle oil, kataifi and black truffle), or the very popular côte de boeuf from the Dry Aged section. All steaks are always cooked to perfection, and while management advises you to order it rare or medium rare, they will indeed cook it to your liking if you prefer otherwise (option of basting sauce or not). Sauces are available at an additional cost (the truffle mushroom is a winner), as well as delightful extras like wilted baby spinach, sweet-potato mash or a braaibroodjie. Vegetarian options are limited (hey, you’re at The Fat Butcher) but include salads, cauliflower soup and porcini or barley risotto.

The chunky in-house BBQ sauce comes standard on the tables and is a must-try on chips and burgers. Slices of freshly baked sour dough bread and butter are also served on wooden planks before all meals. A selection of desserts is available, as is a great kids’ menu.

A carefully curated selection of ‘proudly Stellenbosch’ wines are available on the wine list, as well as teas and coffees, fortified wines, dessert cocktails, craft beers, brandy/whiskey, MCC (including imported champagnes) and even milkshakes.

A large, dedicated team of managers and waiters runs this restaurant seamlessly. Service is friendly and very efficient. Waiters are trained to present the various cuts of meat as a display at each table. Staff are dressed well and are very welcoming (note: all waiters are also fluent in presenting the menu in the most impeccable Afrikaans).

The décor and ambience oozes premium Stellenbosch style, with an eclectic mixture of restored wood, new leather, bold tiles and textured surfaces. It’s best to sit in the picturesque courtyard when the weather permits – they even provide lap blankets and heaters during colder months. The crowd is a mixture of old and younger Stellenbosch locals, a few students (mostly on a special date), international guests, families, groups of friends and business colleagues.

Best for…
Everyday lunches or dinners with family and friends, but also great for business lunches and treating guests from overseas.

(August 2019)

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

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User reviews

6 Reviews
    Amazing experience and amazing food - every single time!
    Once of the best meals out in a while! Incredible burrata salad starter then a fillet that was so tender it was like eating butter. Everyone in our party raved about their meal. Generous portions and if you’re a bone marrow fan, you’re in for a treat - every steak is served with a large bone. Service was excellent - our server Sam was professional, efficient and friendly and treated our kids are guests rather than annoyances. Definitely worth a repeat visit!
    I want to nominate this restaurant as the best steakhouse in the Western-Cape. It is truly an amazing experience time and again, I have never been disappointed dining here. We go back all the time as the food is just superb, we have never experienced anything but excellent service and the relaxed atmosphere makes you feel like you are dining at a best friend's house. The most interesting cuts of meat served with mouth-watering side dishes (and of course, my favorite, the slow roasted garlic sauce). Also, a very versatile wine selection makes for the perfect meal. So much attention to detail in every aspect. Worth every penny.
    Best steak by far! Succulent meat cooked to absolute perfection - no need for any sauce as the basting is a perfect compliment to the tender meat - which is juicy but firm. Presentation of the meat cuts upfront is really good and informative - focussing on the meat with just enough trimmings to make your mouth water! What you order is what you get - really good service too.
    Having battled for months to get in we were delighted to take an out of town friend there today and boy were we not disappointed. Every attention to detail has been made. The chalmar beef is so beautiful and well aged... And cooked to perfection. We tried their speciality steaks... I had the New Yorker which even comes with a marrow bone. My friend had the ribeye on the bone and all our sauces were exceptional. They don't charge corkage which helps take the sting out of the the meal... Even the steak knives are different and super sharp. Dessert was melktert and warm stick toffee.... Sublime. Rita the owner spends time chatting and there is no doubt in my mind we'll be back. LOVED IT.

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