Shortly after Chef Luke Dale-Roberts closed down his restaurant at The Saxon Hotel, Villas, and Spa in Johannesburg, the five-star hotel has announced that it will open Grei fine-dining restaurant on 19 April, with Chef Candice Philip at the helm. 

The Grei restaurant name and theme comes from the Portuguese word, meaning ‘society of people’, the media release informs. A palette of greys will be used in the decor.  ‘Essentially, grey is colour without colour. This has been a huge inspiration in developing the look and feel of the space, and menu’, says Chef Candice.

The restaurant will serve a six course tasting menu, paired with local and international wines. It will reflect Chef Candice’s love of unusual pairings, her passion for herbaceous flavours, and her signature style of intricately-plated dishes. She has been at the hotel for thirteen years, working her way up the kitchen ladder, working alongside great chefs such as David Higgs and Luke Dale-Roberts. 

The hotel vegetable and herb garden supplies the kitchen with organic and heirloom produce. ‘We’ve always worked with the garden and its produce, focusing first on organic and heirloom, and later looking to the proteins. But for me, the herbs are often the little things that are overlooked. Not only do they bring an enticing aroma to the food, but also great flavour and colour’, enthuses Chef Candice. The Grei menu will have the smell and flavour of the herbs running through it. Dishes will feature unusual pairings and natural, succulent flavours. The menu will highlight the three key flavours from each dish, and convey a different colour with each course.

The focus at Grei will be on the unusual, starting with the restaurant name, but also in its menu layout, and the ingredient pairings. Chef Wynand van Wyk is the Sous Chef. 

Grei, The Saxon Hotel, Villas, and Spa, Saxonwold, Johannesburg. Tel (011) 292-6000.  Dinner Tuesday to Saturday. 

Chris von Ulmenstein, WhaleTales Blog: www.chrisvonulmenstein.com/blog Tel +27 082 55 11 323 Twitter:@Ulmenstein Facebook: Chris von Ulmenstein Instagram: @Chris_Ulmenstein