Conscious Meat Merchants, Makers Landing, V&A Waterfront
10:00 - 17:00 Fri 08:00 - 17:00 Sat & Sun
Price Range (p/p)
Rafieka Banderker, attended the launch of Conscious Meat Merchants, a new concept eatery at Makers Landing, V&A Waterfront. A brand new collaboration between Conscious Carnivores and Frankie Fenner Meat Merchants to break foodie barriers and bring halaal meat to a broader culture.
Makers Landing is located at The Cruise Terminal opposite Silo District, they have their own parking garage which makes it easily accessible. The warehouse has been designed as an indoor food community that celebrates South Africa’s diverse culture through food. The aim is to bring people together to eat, to make, to learn and to share.
The space is gritty and almost industrial-like with a modern twist, appropriate for its location at The Cruise Terminal and pays homage to its legacy as a cold storage space in the 1920s.
I spent some time connecting with fellow foodies and influencers while I waited for the event to kick off. Once everyone was seated we were introduced to the founders; Mohammed Adam, Andrew Fenner and Mohamed Mohidien who went on to give us the backstory on how the collaboration came about and how Conscious Meat Merchants was conceptualized.
Conscious Meat Merchants was born when Conscious Carnivores joined hands with Frankie Fenner Meat Merchants. It is a unique concept of bringing you high end quality halaal meat alongside the eatery where you can actually taste the meat on offer.
Then came the time everyone was eagerly awaiting; the time to indulge our inner foodies. We were taken through the menu and were told what was available to order for the evening. And so, the delightful culinary adventure began.
Opting for a steak was non-negotiable for me. All their steaks are cut to 300g and are prepared with any of the following: sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, house basting sauce or Conscious Carnivores dry rub. Andrew recommended the salt and pepper rub; however, I went with the house basting and ordered the rump as that was on offer for the evening. The steaks are served without any sides, these needed to be ordered separately. In terms of sauces, they had mushroom sauce and café de paris butter on the menu. I went with Andrew’s suggestion of the mushroom sauce. I also ordered a side of fries and onion rings. Lastly, we ordered chicken wings and chilli poppers to share at the table. The chicken wings were served with your choice of sauce, ranging from house basting (mild) to Habanero (extremely hot).
Now onto one of my favourite spots, the mixologist’s station. Anyone who knows me, knows that I have a deep love for mocktails, it is almost always my drink of choice. I was absolutely fascinated by what was on offer as it differed significantly to the usual options available at other restaurants. The mocktails were designed around the four founders. We chose two mocktails, the pink pomegranate mojito and what was described as a savoury mocktail called The Monster Mo. We watched as the mixologist worked her magic to create our drinks.
We took the drinks to our tables while we waited for the food to arrive. The seating is casual and consisted of light wood tables with either benches or black metal chairs. The seating area was spacious so that social distancing could be adhered to.
The mocktails were delicious, refreshing and bursting with different flavours. The savoury mocktail was a mix of pineapple, date and citrus which gave a unique but great taste. The mixologist explained that some of the syrups were homemade including the pomegranate which was added to my mojito.
The chicken wings, chilli poppers and sides arrived first. The chicken wings were tender and tasty with a slight smoky flavour from the house basting. The jalapeno chillies were stuffed with a combination of mozzarella and cream cheese. I loved this combination and the flavours worked well. The onion rings were crispy, tasty, and moreish. The fries were delicious, crispy on the outside and light and fluffy on the inside. Perfectly fried with the skin on as well as an added flavour of rosemary which I thought was a hit.
Then came the piece de resistance, the rump steaks. Although we waited fairly long, safe to say it was more than worth the wait. The steak was cooked to medium perfection, evenly cooked throughout. It was succulent, flavourful and almost melt in your mouth. It also had a good crust and the house basting gave it the added smoky flavour. If you don’t enjoy a smoky flavour, I would suggest going with Andrew’s suggestion of the salt and pepper rub. The addition of the mushroom sauce was added perfection. I love a great steak, and this was definitely it! I tried a piece of rump with the café de paris butter too. This made me go wow, I think I’ve just tasted a piece of heaven. Flavoursome and richness bursting through.
After all of this, I felt like I was in a food coma but alas no one leaves without dessert. Surely? We decided to try the brownie pie and basque burnt cheesecake. The crème brulee and the banana split were unavailable that evening. It was the first time I’ve tried a basque burnt cheesecake and I have to say it was complete yumminess. The brownie pie wasn’t as satisfying, I thought it to be a bit on the dry side.
The menu also catered for burger lovers with offerings such as an American cheese burger, chicken prego burger and monthly burger. They also offer small plates or sides for those not wanting a huge meal. The trinchado looked amazing and was served with bread. Someone at my table tried it and said she would definitely order it again. They also offer a charcuterie platter, sausage platter, esquites and a variety of milkshakes.
The prices range from R160 for a rump or sirloin steak with no sides to R120 for a burger and fries. The sides and small plates range from R30 to R120. Milkshakes and mocktails are R65 and desserts start at R65.
The evening turned out to be a delightful journey of mouth-watering food, wonderful people and witnessing the birth of a unique approach to the halaal meat industry. I think I speak on behalf of everyone in attendance when I say I was blown away by the attention to detail, effort and passion that was put into every single dish and the entire store. The founders were so hands-on and gave us great insight. I could tell this was a labour of love through and through. I left the event having experienced a true sensory feast and will be back for another taste sensation.
By Rafieka Banderker
Accountant by profession, writer at heart. Avid traveller, adrenaline junkie and bookworm.
“You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life”- Rumi
The above quote pretty much sums me up. I live life to its absolute fullest!