The New Chinatown In Johannesburg.
Whenever people hear we live overseas, they always ask if we can get Asian produce there and if there’s a Chinatown.
Of course there is a Chinatown. I bet there’s not one place in the world where the Chinese have not “invaded” and built a small place of their own and then labelled it as “Chinatown”.
It’s a pity that I never wrote about the Chinatown in Auckland when we were living there because we were there every week. We loved that Chinatown. There was fresh Asian greens, the best butcher I’ve ever been to and nicely filleted fish in a seafood shop. It’s a vast difference from the Chinatown we now go to in Johannesburg.
No no, this is not the Chinatown in Johannesburg that I had written about a while ago. I’m talking about the new.. or rather the real Chinatown. The one we go to today when we need stuff like roast duck, Asian greens like chye sim and water spinach and oyster sauce and Nissin cup noodles.
Every Asian living in Johannesburg will recognise this place. We all go there. The hubby hates it. Hahaha! It’s dirty, dodgey looking and frankly, rather filthy and messy. I, on the other hand, love it there. It’s where we get cheap hair cuts and I get to buy 5As export grade Thai rice and all my ingredients for my cooking.
This place is self-sufficient. You’ll get everything you need to live here in Chinatown. Food, hair cuts, hardware stuff, clothes, massages, internet cafes, dentists, car rentals, video shops.. Kids can get their kiddy rides for just a couple of Rands too.
This is my favourite vegetable stall. Yeap, it’s a temporary stall by the streets. I never thought I would be buying my vegetables from street side stalls, but this is the best you can get.
Here are my friends, stocking up on instant noodles in my favourite grocery store, Yat Kee.
It’s a crampy, dusty little place. And the hubby hates it here.. have I said that already? =)
Decisions, decisions.. which chilli sauce should I get?
My friend, Martina gets excited over frozen ducks and chickens in the deep freezer. I think those were waxed ducks. But who knows?
Rows and rows of all kinds of frozen stuff. Great for steamboat days..
And one my favourite thing to buy when we are in Chinatown – roast duck. You can see some excited faces in the reflection too.
Of course the best reason to go to Chinatown is for the food. Cheap and good. Guaranteed to
satisfy make you fat.
The new Chinatown in Johannesburg is located at Derrick Avenue, Cyrildene. Bring lots of cash and a big appetite. =)