TAKING THE FLAVOURS OF SOUTH AFRICA TO THE WORLD
South Africa’s time as an origin of unique and captivating flavours, curated by its passionate food and wine personalities, has arrived. The world is becoming increasingly aware of the original and enticing spectrum of tastes the country’s pioneering chefs, wine-makers, produce-farmers and culinary artists is putting forward on an international stage that has been waiting for these pioneering spirits of taste to arrive.
Under the auspices of Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen and his Michelin-star Restaurant JAN, a brand new concept awaits Europeans and the world whereby fellow friends from Jan Hendrik’s homeland, South Africa, will be joining forces with Restaurant JAN to present a curated flavour and sensorial experience.
In the kitchen four skilled hands will combine in presenting a once-off South African menu of eight courses paired with the very best South African wines. The true flavours and tastes of this diverse country, rich in tradition and heritage with a contemporary pioneering spirit, will be brought to the table using original cooking techniques for which its people are known.
Bookings are essential and can only be done through the form below.
In the true spirit of Ubuntu (compassion and humanity), a percentage of the profits will go to a charity.
A 24-seater fine-dining restaurant in the up-and-coming bohemian district of Nice Port, JAN is a celebration of South-African hospitality and serves honest food inspired by local produce from the markets of the South of France.
Originally from Middelburg a town in the northern reaches of South Africa, Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen studied culinary arts and applied design in Stellenbosch, after which he worked for food publications both locally and abroad. It is during this time that he happened upon the concept of adapting and serving South African favourites like melktert and biltong to discerning culinary audiences in Europe.
PRIVATE DINING ROOM : MARIA
Proudly named after the mother and grandmother of Chef JAN this was also the name of Jan van Riebeeck’s wife, one of the first French Huguenots to settle in South Africa. Vintage Baccarat Chandeliers, all white interiors and natural wood creates a creative atmosphere that makes this space highly recommended for a group from 8 up to 18 persons seated at one communal table. The group will also have a view on the open plan kitchen with a dedicated chef and server attending to your needs.
Chef, award winning author and passionate photographer Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen’s understanding of the world was forged in the kitchens of his mother and grandmothers. So how did he get from kneading dough in a farm kitchen in Mpumalanga, South Africa to running his own restaurant in Nice, France? Here’s the inside scoop straight from the horse’s mouth.
IN THE WORDS OF THE CHEF
A LONG AND WINDING ROAD
Every story has a beginning. Mine started at the tables of my mother and grandmother, where the notion of true South African hospitality seeped into my consciousness to become the foundation on which I would later build my restaurant JAN. It is here that I learned the humble art of serving and creating a warm, welcoming space where people would feel special and escape the humdrum of everyday life to enjoy the singular pleasures of good company and delicious food.
As all creative South African souls do I then made my way to Cape Town. One culinary arts qualification and a Masters in Pastry later I applied for a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Design with a focus in photography at Stellenbosch. Spending a lot of time in the surrounding winelands, I discovered a love for wine and spent a few years plying my trade in the wine industry. In the meantime I continued to foster my love for the visual arts by hosting a few solo painting and photography exhibitions in Cape Town.
ONE STEP AT A TIME
My unique skill set lead to a stint as a contributing food editor at ELLE South Africa, after which I packed my bags to join the ranks at the test kitchens of the head office of ELLE International in Paris. This career move afforded me the opportunity to co-found COORD Event Direction and launch Champagne PIAFF in Epernay.
THE WAY FORWARD
The story of how I came to own a French restaurant is one filled with many obstacles, hard work, determination and more than a little bit of luck. I believe that each of us will experience a few occasions in our lives where the stars are perfectly aligned to make our dreams come true. Destiny will shove you into the right place at the right time, but in that moment it remains your responsibility to take the plunge – to close your eyes, leave the safety of your comfort zone and prove how badly you want it even though you doubt yourself every step of the way.