Local just got a whole lot more lekker

Social Parkwood's new look is more local with vibrant colours and textures.
Social Parkwood's new look is more local with vibrant colours and textures.

A revived take on "shebeen canteen" food and a social experience is what the newly launched Social Parkwood restaurant has to offer.

The spot reworked its menu, decor and vibe in just under six weeks, and officially opened its doors to locals ready to socialise.

The ambience is warm and inviting with wood and velvet furniture next to green plants.

You escape from your typical street corner restaurant with the street-made artworks that are displayed on the walls.

Occasionally you will see an artist creating a masterpiece that would eventually be hung up. And although it's marketed as a shebeen vibe, the music is not your Baby Are You Coming vibes. It's laid back with tropical Caribbean sounds softly playing in the background.

The mouth-watering tasty treats feature platters of lamb, wors skewers, garlic and rosemary beef sirloin skewers, SA fried chicken nuggets and beef burger sliders.

A menu that caters for all, with vegetable skewers, sriracha grilled prawns and the classic fish 'n chips.

A budget of R200 may not cut it for a dinner date that caters for two because there is so much on offer, it would be an injustice not to try at least three dishes. The most a couple can spend would be roughly R450 on food and drinks.

According to owner Bruce Beattie, the new look is a focus on being local with vibrant colours and textures. He says it has become "the shebeen that went to private school".

"We had the honour of being on air with Azania [Mosaka] from 702 a few weeks ago and we were asked to do a tasting. So we cooked up a few of our favourite dishes - the dishes that best represented us - and one of those was the shisanyama sharing board with the truffled parmesan pap.

"They exclaimed that we aren't any average shebeen, not with this kind of pap, but rather like a shebeen that went to private school. It stuck!" he says.

The current menu was inspired by Mzansi's flavours and ingredients. "We have so many amazing elements at our fingertips and being a nation that has so much to offer, it was only fitting that we paid homage to these elements through our food in a casually cool and unsuspecting way."

Beattie says a balance was reached to ensure the space would be authentically South African - without becoming a theme bar.

Under the direction of head chef Albert Said, the spot is well on its way of becoming an international restaurant with a South African twist.

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