Fish & Chips at Victoria Yards

Sunday was the official launch of Victoria Yards in Lorentzville, Johannesburg. We very briefly popped in a while ago but this time we made sure we had enough time to wander around. You might wonder what this Victoria Yards is? It’s described as “a uniquely integrated urban space”. It’s in a ‘dodgy’ part of Johannesburg that few people venture into. And maybe that is exactly the point. This is a space shared by artists and small businesses, artisans, and urban agriculturalists. The focus however seems to be on skills development and integrating the community into this project, instead of just displacing them in favour of a more affluent crowd. I truly hope they can reach or stick to this ideal.

This is a food blog, so before I get carried away, let’s get back to the yums. Between the artists and gardens, all sharing once derelict buildings, is a little corner fish & chips shop. In fact it is called The Fish & Chips shop. They serve herby battered hake and chips made from real potatoes on site, all slathered in salt and vinegar and rolled in newsprint. Oh and tartar sauce made with Cross and Blackwell tangy mayonnaise. That’s it. No frills or extensive menus.

I haven’t had oily, slightly mushy, vinegary corner cafe ‘slap chips’ in a while, and this was the closest I’ve come to stuffing my face with them in Joburg. Restaurant chips all seem to come from a very powdery place.

Newspaper fish and chips. I hope to go back soon and chat to the owners when it is less frantic.

As the dolphins said, “thanks for all the fish.”


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