Charlie and Gerald's Town Treasure is a restaurant, bar and bookshop set in a historic bank vault offering storytelling and jazz dinners.
The historic bank vault section of Somerset House (previously known as the Zwipi Underground) was turned into Charlie & Gerald’s Town Treasure on 6 July 2021. Casual walk-in drinks and food service is available in the ground-floor section as well as the front of the underground section, while the private dining rooms and vault booths in the back are reserved for exclusive One Table lunch and dinner bookings. Where the safe deposit boxes were, has now been turned into an art piece.
The menu consists of hearty and traditional starters or snack bowls like the Cape Malay Butternut Soup or Samoosas; breakfast bowls like the fish tacos with Nigerian chilli sauce; mains like Prawn Matapa, Ethiopian Beef Tibs, Apricot-infused lamb stew and Bobotie; as well as desserts like malva pudding, sorbet and truffles.
Charlie and Gerald, the owners, regularly compete for drink sales. Charlie is known for his ‘Ngudus’ served on tap in the Beer Express and Gerald for fancy Gins with tonic, soda and fruits. The bookshop hosts an interesting collection of treasures that can be viewed here.
The Storytelling evenings take place on the last weekend of every month. This includes the Migrant Cuisine Storytelling Dinner and the 7-Phases of Joburg Storytelling Dinner. Jazz shows are announced on their social media pages.
The public is further invited to join their Pay-it-Forward Meal Project where they serve takeaway meals to those in need of proper food, on Friday and Saturday afternoons at 3 pm.