The Fat Cactus

12 Visitor Photos +

47 Durban Road, Mowbray, 7700, Cape Town Central, South Africa


American, Mexican, Vegetarian

Good for:

Breakfast/Brunch, Families with children, Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Takeout


3.7 rating based on 3 ratings
3 Reviews

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Overall Rating

Very Good

Rating Summary

4.0 rating based on 3 ratings
4.0 rating based on 3 ratings
4.0 rating based on 3 ratings
4.0 rating based on 3 ratings
  1. Expert Review

    4.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Feb 2015 · morgantrimble

    Mexican food is my favorite, and I consider myself a little bit of a connoisseur. Unfortunately, most restaurants in South...

    Mexican food is my favorite, and I consider myself a little bit of a connoisseur. Unfortunately, most restaurants in South Africa that try to do Mexican food get it terribly wrong. You just can’t really get the right ingredients to make it work. The best I’ve had is El Burro in Green Point; they import ingredients like masa harina to make their own delicious corn tortillas. Fat Cactus is a good second choice though. I call it Mexican inspired, because it’s not particularly authentic, but they make some good dishes and offer a wide variety of options for people who are not necessarily super into Mexican food. Fat Cactus has three branches in Cape Town—Mowbray, Gardens, and Woodstock.

    The Mowbray location is in a nice, small, atmospheric pub. It’s nearly always packed, so a booking is a good idea. The menu offers a confusing array of choices, many of which are just variations on the same thing. There are a variety of quesadillas, nachos, salad bowls, burgers, tacos, and fajitas as well as ribs, fish, chicken, and calamari dishes. For each item, there’s generally a choice between a long list of fillings. I usually always go for the “Texas beer chunky chilli beef”. It’s chunks of beef in a spicy red sauce with some kidney beans. I’ve had it in tacos, nachos, and fajitas and this time around, I tried the enchiladas. It’s always super tasty, although not probably the Mexican food you’re used to. Portions are generally quite large.

    One of Fat Cactus’s greatest offerings is the “iceberg”. It’s a draught beer (Castle or Castle Lite) with a big dollop of frozen lime slushy floating on top. It’s a little bit sweet and very refreshing, and you’ll probably go through more than one trying to cool down from the spicy food. There’s also a big list of margaritas and tequilas. The service is pretty good for such a busy, pub style restaurant and the atmosphere is fun.

  2. Expert Review

    3.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Oct 2014 · christinebernard

    Don’t go here if you’re on a diet. This is food that oozes with cheese that drips through your fingers...

    Don’t go here if you’re on a diet. This is food that oozes with cheese that drips through your fingers as you enjoy each bite. Well, mine did at least. Oh okay, there are salad options on the menu, but this is not the type of place I’d go to for a salad. At least they have the option for those that completely disagree with me.

    We had so much fun at The Fat Cactus. It’s very friendly and lively, and definitely a good place to go on a Friday evening after a long week of work. This is what we did. We started off with cocktails, which I had been told that you cannot go to The Fat Cactus without trying a cocktail. I had the Lime and Strawberry blend and my husband got the Mango and Strawberry blend. Both amazing and certainly a great way to start the evening.

    Their menu is quite diverse and everything looked delicious. In the end I went for the Pistol Pete Quesadillas which was basically grilled tortilla wedges with guacamole, salsa, crème, crispy bacon, avocado and feta. My husband went for the Texas Beer Chunky Chilli Beef Enchilada with came with cheese and enchilada sauce. They were both huge and I even took some of mine home. I have been told that their burgers are incredible, especially the Rock Hudson which is a Smokey BBQ 200g beef burger served with crispy bacon and blue cheese.

    They offer a nice selection of milkshakes and sweet deals such as an apple cheesecake chimichanga with soft serve ice cream, but I was way too full to even consider it. Perhaps I’ll go again and try starting off with dessert. Why not!

  3. Expert Review

    4.0 rating based on 1 rating
    Nov 2014 · BiancaFernandes

    Fat Cactus is one of my favourite restaurants in Cape Town and with their new branch in Woodstock, I decided...

    Fat Cactus is one of my favourite restaurants in Cape Town and with their new branch in Woodstock, I decided to see what this one was all about. Although I’m a big fan of Mexican food, I’d never ordered chilli poppers before and I thought that this was a good occasion to try them while I decided what I was going to order for mains. When the 3 golden brown poppers arrived, I couldn’t wait to tuck in. Chilli poppers are jalapeno peppers stuffed with cheese and battered and fried to create a delicious spicy experience of chili and cheese. I can’t wait to go back and have them again as these must-haves are just too good to deny. Did I mention they are served with a salsa mayo that helps cool things down and tastes amazing?!

    It’s always difficult deciding what to eat at Fat Cactus, because everything on the menu sounds so appetizing. Their burgers are always superb, but I had to order the legendary Nachos with Texas Beer Chili Con Carne for my main meal. As Nachos are their most popular dish, you can choose from a range of different toppings and types. There are with chicken, veg or plain, simple cheese which makes for s great starter too. I would definitely recommend the nachos at Fat Cactus as you’ll have a tough job trying to finish the huge portion and always end up taking some home for later.

    For dessert, I asked the waiter what she recommended and she bought me the Brownies with Ice Cream. Although the plate looked spectacular, the brownies were a bit dry and incredibly chocolaty. Remember, there’s no dessert on the menu, so ask your waiter for the desserts of the day. I would recommend booking a table before you go as the fantastic atmosphere, food and service at Fat Cactus makes it pretty popular all week long.

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