Growing up loving the ocean, makes it fitting for our Chief Operations Officer Steven Jooste to work for a seaside restaurant on the stunning West Coast. Steven is a key player at Damhuis Restaurant because he ensures that the hotspot is the smooth sailing, well-oiled machine that it is. It’s a task that he executes with incredible diligence and focus. We decided to get to know him a little better…
Getting to Know Chief Operations Officer Steven Jooste
1. When did your journey with Damhuis Restaurant start?
I first heard about Damhuis in 2005 before it actually became a restaurant. The building, back then, was a beautiful but derelict piece of history that I knew would someday become something worth its historical significance. At that point, I was in the restaurant industry for some years and envisioned that it would be perfect for a restaurant. Some time passed, and after a year and a half of travelling around rural South Africa, I returned to Cape Town to find that it has become precisely that, and I wanted to be part of the team. This was in 2014
2. What sets Damhuis apart from the rest of the culinary scene?
Damhuis is authentic. There is no pretentiousness, or trend-following when it comes to the food. It’s all good quality, value- for- money comfort food. The best ingredients, prepared by qualified chefs produce great food. Besides the food, there is also that going to Damhuis Restaurant is not just a meal, it’s an experience.
3. What part of your job do you enjoy the most?
As Chief Operations Officer, I am actively involved with the processes and procedures that contribute to a smooth running restaurant. With so many moving parts in a shop, there is a severe thrill when you are in the midst of a crazy busy day, and to see that it all flows. It’s also a beautiful thing to see the team come together with a focus in each one’s eyes to make it happen.
4. How would you describe your work ethic?
To find a balance in the food service game, I have adopted a calm approach, with an inquisitive mindset to see how and where one can improve. I believe if I support my team, they will, in turn, support the business. If there is a gap, I can fill…I will.
5. Richard Branson said, “Clients do not come first, employees come first…” Do you agree?
Yes, but only to an extent. I suppose if the clients come first in their eyes, then they come first in my eyes.
6. If you could eat a dish on the Damhuis menu every day for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
It will have to be stuffed calamari tubes. Delicious!
7. What’s the best thing about being a part of the Damhuis family?
The passion that most of us share for what we do, and that we can also share that with our patrons. It is incredible to make a positive difference in someone’s day through what we do.
8. Happiness is…
… a fresh West Coast breeze.
Enjoying getting to know Damhuis Restaurant and our brilliant team? Read more about our fantastic Restaurant Manager Zelda Williams.