My dad used to work as an engineer doing the odd call out jobs to the harbour in Cape Town, this was not a new area as he used to work on the dredging ships before this. During this time, he found a small hidden gem called Panama Jacks, it’s not in the busy harbour where all the hustle and bustle happens but rather in the more industrial part where you have to go through customs security, which is unique when going out for a meal.
We didn’t go all too often as it was rather an expensive outing, therefore it was a special occasion visits, but that was okay, as the place never changed and always looked the same. An old wooden type wharfside shack that looked very quirky. As you walked through the door you were met with the delicious smells of cooked garlic prawns, squeaky floorboards and low ceilings filled with flags from countries all over the world, these are thought to be donated by ships that pass through the harbor. This place had a style of its own with a comforting feel. Never once did I ever see this place not buzzing with happy people.
The food is always delicious with the stars being the seafood platters. It first became well known for its live lobsters, oysters, mussels and abalone where you can choose your own dinner straight out the live tanks. With other meals consisting of many fresh fish options that are delivered daily and a sushi bar. The live tanks are filled with real sea water, of which about 30 000 litres of water pass through every hour – this is an extradentary thought. Even if you don’t need to choose your own lobsters the tanks are available to view by anyone eating in the restaurant while you wait for your meals.
Those who do not eat seafood and are not tempted to try, there is a wide selection to choose from including steaks, chicken and even duck if you fancy being a little adventurous.
They have changed their location, so keep an eye out, but an experience that is well worth having, especially those with a love of seafood.