At Damhuis Restaurant, we pride ourselves on being a close family of people who care about top-notch food and service. At the helm of our bustling kitchen is executive chef Stèfan Meintjes.
Stèfan has been in the food industry since the age of 16. After a gap year in the United States, he returned to South Africa to study professional cooking and culinary arts. Today, he is responsible for curating the menu at Die Damhuis and ensuring that the traditional South African cuisine and fresh seafood we are known for remain up to standard.
We decided to get to know to know our executive chef Stèfan Meintjes a little better…
1. What inspired you to become a chef?
I remember loving being in the kitchen, growing up. My brother Pierre, who is also a chef, and I used to cook together all the time. And my grandma was also a great cook, so it runs in the family.
2. What’s your philosophy when it comes to food?
Simplicity is the art of perfection.
3. What is your favourite ingredient to cook with?
Any fresh, local, good quality organic ingredients because it does make a difference when it comes to flavour. But, my all-time favourite ingredient has to be butter.
4. What do you usually find yourself craving?
I am a meat lover, so definitely well-matured meat. There is indeed nothing more beautiful than seeing great marbling on a quality steak. But I also love casseroles, Osso Bucco and kleftiko.
5. What do you like about Melkbosstrand?
I love the fact that it is a tight-knit community that works together to make out little village stand out from the crowd. We are always willing to help each other and ready to lend a helping hand to those in need. We are also passionate about supporting local business, which helps the community thrive.
6. What do you appreciate the most about Damhuis Restaurant?
We are a family that works together. The team we have assembled is a cut above the rest: they are a hard-working, multi-cultural team that performs like no other I have led in the past. We have respect for one another, we laugh together, we cry together, and we can’t wait to get up in the morning to come to work. I am also very proud of the fact that we have low staff turnover, and firmly believe that the number one asset for any business is the people. If you take care of your staff, they will look after the clients.
7. Happiness is…
Being successful and grateful in your personal and business life. Taking stock of what you have and how you made it happen in life. Life is too short to eat crappy food and drink shitty wine.