Brooklyn >Food & Dining > Madiba Restaurant
195 Dekalb Ave, Brooklyn, NY | Directions 1120540.689665 -73.971784
Mon - Thu, incl Sun 11am-11pm
Fri & Sat 11am - 12pm
Neighborhoods: Fort Greene
Perfect food. Perfect service. Perfect time waiting with great bartender in front room. Perfect ambiance. Perfect lighting. Percect menu. Perfect wine selection. Perfect all around. Nuff said.
No place like it! – You walk into a hopping bar scene with all of the most beautiful people you almost want to leave! But they smile, and say hello, and greet you warmly. Move on in and try some crazy food, try it all! The wine selection is varied, and their homemade drinks are...umm....interesting. I love this joint!
There were so many signs saying 'Turn back now!' We just didn't listen. – Warning #1 - We should have known it would be bad when a table walked out because the food took too long. We went on a Saturday at 6:30pm. We were not seated until 7:30pm. Understandable, it was a busy Saturday night, but no one came to our table for at least 20 minutes, not even with water. We ordered food for our 3 year old and waited 20 minutes for that even though we asked to have the french fries brought out as soon as possible.
Warning #2 - After we had received our appetizers and the plates had been cleared, which took about 50 minutes, we were told that one of the dishes we had ordered had sold out. Again , we waited.
Warning #3- At some point the waitress asked us how we were doing. We were fine although we had no food to comment on so we all just stared at each other for a while. Actually, we were hungry. There were three of us sharing a bowl of rice that we had ordered for our kid. The waitress seemed surprised that no one had brought out any food. We were surprised too, but more so at the fact that she had no idea what was going on.
Warning #4 - I had to get up and go to the bar to get the beer that my brother in-law had ordered. It took her about 30 minutes, it took me 2.
My advice - don't go unless you have several hours to waste staring at other people who are hungry and waiting for their food or unless you have gift certificates, which we did. Needless to say, WE WILL NEVER GO BACK!
Oh, and just because the owner is really nice does not make up for the fact that it took us 3 hours to eat a two course meal.
Not what you'd expect – The ambiance is amazing and the setting is unique. You walk in to a dimly lit restaurant and look around at the tables, you feel at home. The entertainment is great. I thought the music I was hearing by the bar was music the restaurant was playing.
- I had to wait about 20 minutes for it.
+ Tasty I had one called Cane Cachacha or something like that. There were fruit in it: a slice of mango, 2 strawberries, and a slice of kiwi.
-Waited about 35 minutes for it.
+Gets your taste buds going. I had fish and fries with calamari. I needed no ketchup or tarter sauce. Everything was seasoned well. The fish tasted buttery and salty but not too salty. It was just right. The calamari were crunchy, not too soft and gummy like some places. The fries were cooked well.
**Make sure you have reservations especially on special holidays.
-The table I got because I didn't make a reservation, was right by the entrance. It was a cold night and the curtains over the door served us no purpose.
The tables to the right of the restaurant are at your knees!
-We waited about 20 minutes for our bill
+The waiters and host are very hospitable and polite
Although Madiba is understaffed, their food is good and so are the amenities. The place is small and can probably only accommodate but so many workers. I'm sure it would cut the wait time for food and even getting your bill when you're done.
a bit expensive – the food is quite good although i can't say authentic, the drinks generous, the staff is friendly. it is overpriced and can be very crowded. but what really upsets me, is that despite the use of mandela's name, the management clearly isn't even trying to exude the progressive political values of this great man. they tolerate harassement of customers by those who have clearly consumed too much alcohol (i have heard this complaint from quite a few women). women beware-stick to irish bars if you want to drink-they don't tolerate open harassement of women
fort greene gem- great date spot – I went to Madiba last night for Brooklyn Restaurant week. I was scared away by the reviews but tried it on a recommendation. I loved it! I don't know what the rest of you are talking about. DELICIOUS food, great decor, amazing artwork, incredibly friendly and efficient waitstaff, and cute friendly bartender Dennis.
I was in South Africa just two months ago and I did not find it inauthentic. I had the veggie samosas and bobotjie, and the malva pudding for desert. They are all mouthwatering, and I'm the biggest foodie ever. The music and the vibe were great. It's dark and romantic with huge windows and has an eclectic crowd. We were seated right away and had some great SA savannah and krait beers, yum!
Interesting stuff- Madiba is Nelson Mandela's nickname. They have internet workstations, randomly.
Check it out. You won't be disappointed.
Always a party outside – My girlfriend and always pass by this place and notice music and crowds of people almost every night. We decide to go in for dinner (9/6) and try it out. We order a Caipirinha and a glass of red wine (Nederburg Pinotage). The overpriced Caipirinha was terrible. We ordered a salad, oxtail and a fish dish (I forgot the name, but it was big fish, head chopped off). The salad and the oxtail were impressive! For dessert we had Jenny's Malva pudding. It was a nice way to top it off. We will return, but will stay away from the expensive drinks.
Friendly and yummy but overpriced – I've lived in the neighborhood for 7 years and I have always had a good time at Madiba. The service is really friendly - much more so than alot of other places in the area. The food is delicious and definitely different then everything else on the DeKalb strip. The only downside is that it's totally overpriced. $9 for a whiskey? You can get the same thing almost anywhere else for $6-8. I guess you're paying for the atmosphere but it's a bit much. Still, I go back every so often and always feel welcome.
Ridiculously poor service, plastic, overpriced – Being a South African I was excited to check out New York only South African restaurant. I should not have bothered, what a disappointment. You walk into an overcrowded space decorated in tourist kitsch which has the feel of a plastic, cheaply produced high school play.
The bartender took about 10 minutes polishing glasses and trying to establish a "cool" South African attitude before he deigned to look in our direction. Of course there were no South African beers you could actually order - the multitude South African beer bottles behind the bar was there for decoration only. We ordered a Mojito and a Capirinha. The Mojito took 5 minutes. Then he proceded to make Sangria, serve wine etc. while ignoring us for another 10 minutes. I finally cancelled the order and was charged $16 for a very bland Mojito.
Spare yourself and the one you love.
Excelent! – Excelent place! I recomend to everybody that want to have a great night!
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