Trenchtown (previously Roots/Cool Runnings), now under the ownership and management of Antonio Manuel, held it's relaunch last weekend, 31 August to 2 September. Having been to the Caribbean-style restaurant only twice before, and briefly, I had no memorable experience of the place. On the Friday night it was packed to the brim, so waiting for drinks/meals to arrive was much like waiting for the second coming.
It is based in Observatory and is most likely frequented by students, so I will review it for what is. It's very spacious - whether you're looking to feed your face with American cuisine (burgers/pizza) or go binge drinking (specials galore), there's plenty of room to do it in - when you're inside, the rustic decor makes you feel like you're outside, and when you are outside, you'll feel like you're at the beach as your feet sink softly into the sea sand. Manuel hasn't done much with the outside yet, but it has plenty of potential.
Donovan "Doggy" Wright
While salivating over our neighbour's food, we were treated to the acoustic tunes of Kenneth Minor, and I'm assuming it was Minor as we couldn't quite hear much over the humming of conversation. Minor was followed by Doggy and the Outlaws, a three-piece acoustic comedy-rock trio made up of Donovan "Doggy" Wright on lead vocals, Charlie "Fatty" Laubscher on backing vocals and rhythm guitar, and Alexander Moffat on lead guitar. They don't take themselves seriously and neither should you; it's all a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun.
Somewhere between being there and not being there, we missed a magician, fire poi and breathers, a bartender flair show and a beer pong contest. The rest of the weekend, however, promised hula dancers, a bit of limbo fun, mud/sumo wrestlers, a surf machine, and a wet T-shirt contest - how well that went down in this icy weather is hard to imagine.The Trenchtown challenge
Accompanied by five others at my table we were all keen to taste chef Paul Wakelin's wares. If you enjoy cheesy pizza, salty fries, greasy seafood, hot-as-hell chilli poppers, and towering burgers, Wakelin is the master chef for you! If you're planning on making a meal of it at Trenchtown, I suggest that you arrive hungry - even your starter will be served with a side-serving of fries, so be prepared to let slip on that precious diet.
Island Vibes pizza
If you're feeling more than just a little peckish, Trenchtown has a challenge for those feeling "man enough". If a stack of SIX beef patties basted in BBQ sauce, drenched in cheddar cheese, served with 200g fries and a 1l draught, doesn't break you (and your heart), I don't know what will.
Kingklip in garlic and butter sauce
Trenchtown is the perfect venue to take your housemate to on his birthday, a great spot to celebrate the end of your exams, and a nice after-party venue for your matric dance. For an after-work drink, maybe, though their cocktails aren't great - if you're the beer-guzzling sort, then hell yes, by all means. Trenchtown was not for me, but it may just be the perfect spot for you.
For more on Trenchtown, find them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/trenchtownobs
.All images by Tyron Marshall