‘Lekker Weskus”s Dawid is living a food dream by the sea


Less than two years ago, Dawid Botha was still a professional photographer and videographer who photographed weddings of celebrities such as springbok Steven Kitshoff.

These days he is rather in front of the camera as the creator of the popular social media page “Lekker Weskus”.

On this page, he makes hearty recipes, often over a fire, with picturesque scenes of the West Coast in the background for his thousands of followers.

Today, “Delicious Weskus” not only consists of videos, but also products and will soon even include a cookbook and restaurant.

All this thanks to a simple pike fry.

“It was all completely by chance and totally unplanned,” says Dawid from a stoep overlooking the West Coast waters.

“Me party trick has always been my radio voice, and I decided one night at a pike barbecue in Churchhaven to make a video while I was busy, as I already had all the equipment. I threw my radio voice over the footage and posted the video on TikTok with no expectations.”

Within a few hours, nearly 10,000 views poured in, and after a month, Dawid’s TikTok followers stood at 20,000 and his hits at more than 300,000.

That was November 2022. Today, more than a combined 100,000 people follow his West Coast food adventures on various social media platforms.

Of garage pies-lover to connoisseur

The George native jokes that cooking is a newfound talent and does not naturally flow through his veins.

“I was just typical garage pie-type of man, I would eat anything. My poor mother doesn’t like cooking either. She did it because she had to, not because she wanted to,” he says with a laugh.

Dawid changed his hometown for Cape Town in 2019, but says he quickly realized he belonged in a small town. Now he calls Velddrif on the West Coast his home.

“The queues, the traffic… Everything was just too much in Cape Town. Here there are real communities, and everyone knows each other. You can still make a fire on the beach, people go to the library, and there is no traffic light. It’s just different.”

Every day starts with a walk on the beach, often with dolphins playing in the shallower waters.

“Sometimes I have to pinch myself to think that this is my reality,” he says, pointing to the almost pristine beach behind him.

For some keyboard warriors, Dawid is still a so-called “incomer”, especially when he gives his own flavor to a characteristic West Coast dish.

Moreover, comments about his voice, appearance and cooking skills almost made him finally hang up his apron and microphone.

“Sometimes I have to talk myself into courage, especially if someone helps me and I can’t take myself down. It’s typically that case where you can get 99 nice messages out of 100 comments, but that one in which you’re bad-mouthed will stick with you the most,” explains Dawid.

“I retaliated in the beginning, but realized it wasn’t worth it. The aunties are funnily enough the ones who are very friendly. It’s more the uncles who get into the comments – every man believes that his way of braaiing is the best,” he teases.

Afrikaans culinary community welcomes him with open arms

David confesses that at times he still suffers from impostor syndrome (imposter syndrome) are struggling, despite the fact that big names in the local culinary industry, such as South Africa’s own Michelin star chef Jan-Hendrik van der Westhuizen and Innisop and cook door said Bertus Basson, happy to set a place for him at the table.

“When Bertus contacted me through TikTok and asked to cook with me, I was terribly on my nerves. I felt like he was going to see right through me because I wasn’t professionally trained or experienced.”

Now Dawid and this popular food expert, whom he also considers a mentor, like to visit again and again.

“I remember how self-conscious I was because I didn’t have the knife skills of a chef, then Bertus said that his mother didn’t have professional skills either, but made him some of the tastiest food in the world. Then you immediately feel better about yourself.”

He has also been invited as a guest to two exclusive meals of Jan-Hendrik.

“I didn’t think that someone like Jan even knew who I was, but we started talking to each other by e-mail. He spoke so highly of ‘Delicious West Coast’ and was happy to give advice for my cookbook.

“I couldn’t believe that they would all be so kind and generous with their knowledge. I’m just this ordinary guy who knows absolutely nothing about professional cooking, but now is welcomed with open arms.”

Comedian and social media personality Mel the Storyteller also became a good friend to Dawid, so much so that he was responsible for the food at her festive three-day West Coast wedding in January.

“We experience quite the same type of criticism and pick on each other, but also encourage each other. She’s a wonderful, genuine person.”

What do his friends and family think of all this sweet success?

“My mother is my only rights fanshe brags to everyone,” he says with a laugh.

“I think the new friends I’ve made through this experience are perhaps more supportive because many others still see me as the wedding photographer.”

Currently, there are far more cooking pots and coals than bridal couples and flowers captured by his lens.

“I’ve been a photographer for 15 years and have been doing videos since 2015. I’ve done 60 to 70 weddings a year, so it feels like I’ve reached my personal glass ceiling to some extent in that regard. I am now more passionate about ‘Nice West Coast’ and want to make it my main priority.”

His appetite for new challenges is now satisfied anew with the new possibilities that come knocking at his door these days.

“That’s probably now my career equivalent of a midlife crisis, but I am someone who wants to grow and learn new things all the time. I don’t want to wake up one day and be in my forties and still be photographing weddings. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s not my dream anymore.”

Currently, his major focus areas are two series he wants to record for YouTube and of course the development of his own West Coast restaurant.

“The idea is to serve genuine West Coast dishes that have been spiced up a bit. No foam or strange leaves, but still a bit of refinement,” he explains.

Which ‘Delicious West Coast’ dish will guests have to try first one day?

“Definitely my rosé mussels and paprika and garlic butter pike. The rosé mussels alone convinced an investor to open the restaurant. That should tell you enough.”