The much-anticipated revamp and opening of Calexico in 44 Stanley Street


The brand-new doors opened on Friday to reveal an entire new look and new name. Co-owners Larry Hodes and Michael Vacy-Lyle are excited to show Joburg what they have in store: “The new restaurant is an eclectic mix of Americana style food, décor and music – staying true to the nature of Stanley beer Yard, but with a shinier and edgier feel”.

The story of #CalexicoJHB at @calexicojhb

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X marks the spot for @calexicojhb (formerly Stanley Beer Yard).

#CalexicoJHB is a portmanteau for Californian / Mexican cuisine – and that's about as pretentious as they get. On the menu are sticky finger treats like ribs, wings, and nachos, served alongside hyper-healthy coleslaws, and a very trendy little artichoke dip (served hot but mildly spicy). Desserts were crowd-pleasing brownies and apple crumble – unfortunately I didn't have room to enjoy, but I stole a scoop of the accompanying vanilla ice-cream, and was pleased enough to be impressed.

I couldn't drink alcohol as I hadn't eaten beforehand, so I challenged their mixologist to make me a virgin cocktail that didn't taste like syrup that was missing something … he created a decidedly dry citrus mojito followed by a fiery chilli & coriander concoction that kicked like a mule. I eventually did have tequila and promptly forgot the names of everything!

Highlight: A very exciting evolution of the Stanley Beer Yard narrative into a more eclectic dining space that won't alienate regulars, but is certain to attract new foodie followers.

Lowlight: I'm certain I can find one if I had enough time to dig deep enough …

Conclusion: if The Beach Boys wanted to hangout in Jozi, you'd probably find them at #CalexicoJHB! #DineJoziStyle

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Calexico is a border city in California: a portmanteau of the words California and Mexico and a perfect intermingling of music genres, food and dance. The band of the same name is an Americana, Indie, country, folk and Latin rock band from Arizona. The music style, like the city it gets its name from, is a blend of southern Californian and Mexican inspired sounds.

Their feel-good harmonies, alongside legends like Band of Horses, the Eagles, The Band, Otis Redding, John Coltrane, Bob Marley and The Beastie Boys have inspired our very own Calexico: an Americana style restaurant and bar.

Calexico has its roots in great music and being first and foremost a vinyl lounge, we have decided to include a vinyl wall full of records from legendary musicians. We have included a classic record player, where patrons are welcome to play their own choice of vinyl during the day” says Larry Hodes.

The new menu was designed by chef and food stylist Robyn Timson-Moss, who believes the food is a vibrant take of classic Californian-style dishes. Think artichoke, nachos and hot brisket and racks and racks of ribs.

Calexico prides itself on diversity and originality – inspiration hit when trawling through the names of great rock legends and flavourful food styles and genres – a perfect combo of music, eating and drinking.

Call 011 482 5791

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