Following the successful opening of Marble in Rosebank in Johannesburg in 2016, Chef David Higgs and entrepreneur Gary Kyriacou are planning to open Saint ‘Pazzo Italiano’ in Sandton in August. 

The media release shares that Sandton has more than 80000 professionals working in the area, with scope for more restaurants and bars to cater for them. The Saint restaurant ‘will be a great space for Sandton’s trendy, up-and-coming business crowd, and will serve dishes for people on the move – quick to prepare, but tasty and good to look at’, said Kyriacou.

The inspiration for Saint came from a trip to New York two years ago by Chef David and Kyriacou, when they were researching open-fire cooking for Marble restaurant. 

The restaurant name translates into ‘Mad Italian’, and the restaurant focus will be on pizza and pasta. While not an Italian restaurant, it will have an Italian feel, said Chef David. Dishes will also be cooked in woks, and open-fire cooking already used at Marble, will be used at Saint. 

Chef David describes the food offering as follows: ‘The food will be Italian, but twisted. So yes, there will be pizza from our two massive pizza ovens from Italy, and there will be pasta; but there are also going to be lots of things in-between. We’ve got two woks stations and a Grillworks (inspired by Marble) for some crispy elements’. He is quick to emphasize that the new restaurant will not be a copy of Marble. 

Like Marble, the restaurant will be large, seating about 230 patrons, in a 1000 square meter space, located in the MARC-building, previously the Village Walk, close to the Gautrain station, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, office blocks, and hotels. Its decor and food will differ from that of Marble. Light lunches will be served at a ‘business pace’, and after-work drinks will be served at the bar. 

The interior design and décor is being project managed by Irene Kyriacou. She recently traveled to London, Amsterdam, and Paris, and attended the MAISON&OBJET PARIS Trade Show, to gain inspiration for the new venture.  The media release informs that she is working in partnership with Redecco to design the space. Local designers and artisans will largely be commissioned, but some of the pieces will be imported. The logo design for the restaurant is surprisingly old-fashioned. 

Mrs Kyriacou explained: ‘The décor will be playful, a combination of old and new, juxta-positioned textures and vibrant colour. Items will be recognizable, but slightly twisted to be more contemporary, cheekier but also sophisticated. Guests will be able to relate to everything – from the walls, to the table coverings, chairs and plates – but we are taking the classics and translating them into something unique. Giving it our own spin’. 

Saint is planning to be adventurous:  ‘We want to add to the vibrancy of Johannesburg as a working city. We want to be adventurous – and see how far we can take it’, concluded Chef David.

Saint ‘Pazzo Italiano’, Shop UR 18, The MARC Building, Rivonia Road, Sandton. Facebook: @saint.jhb. Instagram: @saint_jhb. Twitter: @saint_jhb

Chris von Ulmenstein, WhaleTales Blog: Tel +27 082 55 11 323 Twitter:@Ulmenstein Facebook: Chris von Ulmenstein Instagram: @Chris_Ulmenstein