Life’s too short to not buy the dress, book the holiday or try something a little exotic on your dinner plate. The advantage of living in South Africa is that we have an abundance of game and unusual meats that we can experiment with right at our doorstep. Beware though, once you try venison or springbok cooked to an inch of perfection, you are inclined to keep coming back for more.

Luckily for you, Karibu Restaurant at the V&A Waterfront has an array of exotic meats always available on their extensive menu. And if you are not sure why you should be eating them, here is some information on these meats which will steer you in the right direction.

1. Ostrich

Ostrich is an extremely healthy red meat option. It has all the wholesome flavour of beef and is very high in protein, and low in fat and calories. The high iron content makes it an ideal option, and it has even lower fat per gram than skinless chicken or even turkey. Served as carpaccio or a decadent fillet option, you simply have to try it out. Best paired with a glass of red wine from Karibu’s award winning wine list.
Ostrich fillet.

2. Venison

Venison is rich in flavour and has a deep earthy taste to it. It is high in several important nutrients which include vitamin B12, zinc and niacin. Visitors to South Africa are always bowled over by the unique taste of venison. At Karibu you can enjoy several preparations which include a venison potjie which is slow-cooked and retains extra flavour or medallions which are served with a truly South African Amarula sauce. Alternatively you can opt for the giant skewer served with the same Amarula sauce and a truly unique additive of stewed peaches.
A venison skewer with peaches.

3. Crocodile

A common question asked is, what does crocodile taste like? The common answer is chicken. Personally, I think it is a pretty unique flavour incomparable to much else. It is firm like pork but also has the texture of fish when sliced thin. The flavour leans more towards a combination of fish and chicken, which is unheard of. My best advice would be for you to try it yourself and decide. At Karibu the preparation is simple, it is sliced thin like a salmon carpaccio and served as a starter.
Ostrich and crocodile carpaccio.

4. Springbok

Springbok is rich and unique in taste. Cooked properly it is delicious and very much like a well-prepared steak, just with more flavour profiles. If you’re in the mood for a meal with several layers to it, then definitely try the springbok shank at Karibu Restaurant. The chef slow roasts the shank with peaches, garlic and red wine to successfully merge the flavours then accompanies it with a side of herb mash. It falls off the bone like a meat off a good shank is meant to, and you’re lost in the experience of a tender gamey dish.
The Springbok shank with herb mash.
These meats are a great way to uncover different flavours of our country. We are fortunate enough to have great quality meats and restaurants like Karibu who can prepare them to perfection. The next time you feel like trying something completely unique, make sure you head here first – if not, there are as many less adventurous dishes to indulge in on their menu. Karibu Restaurant has been awarded numerous accolades for its South African food, and truly showcases the best of South African hospitality.
Contact: 021 421 7005
Address: 156, The Wharf Centre, V & A Waterfront
Website: Karibu

Article written by

Nidha Narrandes

Nidha Narrandes is a food-obsessed travel addict with 19 years of journalism experience. She is happiest on a road to nowhere without a plan. A masterchef at home, she can't do without chilli - because chilli makes the world a tastier place.