When a good friend of mine invited me to a place called Van Hunks in Kloof St for his farewell drinks last Fri, I must admit, the first thing that came to mind was that I’d walk in there and be faced with wall to wall Johnny Bravo types saying stuff like “Hey mamma, wanna watch me comb my hair real fast?” or “You smell kinda pretty, wanna smell me?”
But turns out the name in fact has absolutely nothing to do with hunky boys… damn it. The name actually comes from the story of how Table Mountain got it’s “tablecloth”. The legend states that there once was an old Dutch pirate who went by the name of Van Hunks. He had a little cottage between Table Mountain and what’s now called Devil’s Peak and he loved smoking his pipe. Then one day he found himself in a pipe smoking dual with the devil himself. They smoked until the mountain was surrounded by a white cloud, but being a champion pipe smoker, Van Hunks beat the devil hands down in the end. Now when you see the white cloud on Table Mountain, you’re basically witnessing a mega rematch between old Van Hunks and the dark one going down. Or so the story goes…
Anyhoo, now that I’ve given you a nice solid history lesson. Ahem. Let’s get back to the actual place.
There’s a dining area where you can have a bite to eat. They have a pretty manly menu with things like burgers, ribs, steak, ravioli & chicken livers. But we actually settled in the bar area. So can’t comment on the food.
I liked the feel of the place. It’s casual with a fun pub vibe and decor wise they have some really cool old school elements on the walls:
We had a great time there. The energy was good and it was quite busy. So clearly it’s a popular spot for Friday after work drinks. The only thing I didn’t like was the fact that it was very smoky in there. I get that the bar was a smoking area. But there wasn’t any ventilation from what I could see. That meant by the time I got home I smelled like an ashtray… hair, clothes, skin, everything… and I don’t smoke. Blegh.
BUT… other than that… it’s a pretty stand up watering hole. I’m sure one which will be favoured by die manne.