Afrikaans is a crazy language, with super-long words filled with many vowels, guttural g’s, and rolling r’s requiring acrobatic tongue movements. Afrikaans food words are no exception; they are delightful and I have no idea what they mean or how to pronounce them. Such were my thoughts as I pondered the menu at Bergbron Plaaskombuis.

Bergbron PlaaskombuisBergbron Plaaskombuis. “Plaaskombuis” means farm kitchen. “Plaas” is farm and “kombuis” is kitchen and the two words are combined together into one long word, as often happens in Afrikaans. “Kwekery” means nursery.

What is tuisgebakte and how on earth do I say it? What about boepensbroodjie, roosterbrode, sonop jaffel, vaaljapie? Skilpadjies?

Menu at Bergbron PlaaskombuisThe menu at Bergbron Plaaskombuis, which the server delivered with a tiny tin cup of homemade ginger beer. 

Bergbron (another inscrutable Afrikaans word) is a western Jozi suburb, adjacent to Northcliff, Greymont, and Florida Glen. I was excited to discover an interesting restaurant there (thanks to Gail for the tip), as I find the sprawling West Rand suburbs difficult to penetrate from a “things to do” perspective. The Plaaskombuis is definitely something worth doing.

Breakfast at Bergbron Plaaskombuis

Marie-Lais and I went to the Plaaskombuis on a cold, rainy Friday morning. The restaurant sits on the property of a garden nursery, so you have to walk through rows and rows of pretty aloes and other indigenous plants to get there.

succulents at the Bergbron nurserySucculents on display at the kwekery.

Looking in at Bergbron PlaaskombuisLooking in on the Plaaskombuis.

I expected the restaurant to be empty on a day like this, but several tables were taken and it was so warm and cozy on the enclosed porch (or “stoep”, as they say in Afrikaans). At the center of the dining area was a giant iron stove with actual flames coming out of one of the burners.

I knew we were on to something good.

Plaaskombuis dining areaThe Plaaskombuis dining area, with the requisite decorated tin cups hanging from the ceiling. (Every Afrikaans restaurant seems to have these.)

Stove at Bergbron PlaaskombuisThe wood-burning stove.

I ordered the snoop jaffel — two waffle-like circles fused together with egg, bacon, and cheese in between. I’m not sure if I was supposed to do this but I drizzled the whole thing with syrup and it was absolutely delicious. Marie-Lais had the skilpadjies, which is basically two balls of liver, and a side of fried eggs.

Breakfast at Bergbron PlaaskombuisBergbron breakfast.

I loved everything. My only complaint is the coffee — the cups are way too small and two americanos felt like barely enough for me.

After paying the bill (only R180, including tip, for two breakfasts and four coffees), we were lucky enough to catch our server pulling homemade bread out of the wood-burning oven.

Bread coming out of the oven at Bergbron Plaaskombuis

Homemade bread at Bergbron PlaaskombuisI love this.

The Plaaskombuis also has a small “padstal”, or roadside stall, next to the dining room selling various homemade goods. I didn’t investigate closely but a friend tells me they have very good cordials, jams, etc.

Bergbron Plaaskombuis is at the corner of Bergbron Driver and Helderberg Road in Bergbron. Call +27-76-932-4333.

Read the rest of my 2018 Restaurant of the Month series.

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