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  • Lisa Martus


Updated: Feb 17, 2023

When the ‘Haenertsburger’ is brought to your table with a flourish at the Iron Crown, it is one of those ‘wow’ food moments where a meal looks too good to eat, never mind the practicalities of how to fit it into your mouth. The Haenerts-burger is a celebration of the spirit and the flavour of the village after which it is named. All of the delicious layers work together harmoniously to create a unique and delectable burger from the homemade patties sourced at Stylkop Butchery, or the honey-roasted macadamias from Tupelo Honey Farm to the organic cheese and lettuce from Wegraakbosch Farm. Add to that a tart but ‘berry’-delicious chutney from Magriet’s Fine Food, avocados delivered by Fresh From the Farm, a generous spoonful of mayonnaise from local, free-range eggs and plump fruit from Blueberry Heights reduced to make the distinctive sauce.

The fresh burger buns from OK Sugar Hill in Tzaneen try valiantly to contain all of this deliciousness in a firm embrace but as soon as you take the first mouthful, it’s all over… in terms of trying to hold the burger together as well as keeping your tastebuds in check. The only way forward is to give in and fully enjoy the Haenertsburger …and the same applies to the town… explore it with the knowledge that you will discover lots of lovely layers. Starting with owners Audrey Earle and Lenny Thomas, who ‘grew up’ in the Iron Crown Pub as young residents of the area and jumped at the opportunity to buy it. Their first day of trading was 1 November 2019, made even more memorable by the fact that South Africa won the Rugby World Cup. Audrey says that their dream was to breathe new life into the much-beloved pub, ultimately opening up the back garden space for live music events.

Covid put many of their plans on hold for a while but Audrey and Lenny are still passionate about the area not only because of the relaxed lifestyle but also because of the special friends and family who call Haenertsburg home. Audrey and Lenny have known each other since high school and their enduring love story is reflected in their warm welcome for visitors, the camaraderie within their team and their commitment to supporting and building the community. More than this though, is their love of a good party… so come to the Iron Crown and join the locals for live music, Quiz Night, Cleavage evening, St Patrick’s Day or the next big Rugby Match. You will soon feel like a Haenertsburger yourself.

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