Pete Goffe-Wood brings years of first-hand kitchen experience and a wealth of restaurant-industry knowledge to his new consultant role at Majeka House & Spa. He will be responsible for directing and mentoring Makaron restaurant’s kitchen team, including newly appointed head chef Lucas Carstens who joins the hotel on 1 December.
Previously at Cuvee, on Simonsig Wine Estate in Stellenbosch, Carstens’ style leans towards locally sourced, ingredient-driven food with a sustainable conscience. It’s clear that Carstens and Goffe-Wood share a similar philosophy on food. They agree that the focus of good cooking should be all about the flavours on the plate, rather than any disguises or pretence.
‘With its location in one of Stellenbosch’s most desirable residential areas, Makaron lends itself to being an inviting neighbourhood local, rather than a fine-dining destination,’ says Goffe-Wood.
Well-known for his no-nonsense approach to food – lip-smacking deliciousness being far more important to him than fiddly plating or fussy garnishes – Goffe-Wood is keen to make Makaron’s lunch menu more substantial, and to develop a common thread between the lunch and dinner menus. Above all, he wants to shift the emphasis at Makaron to ‘special’, rather than ‘special-occasion’ dining. ‘We’re into food that’s more about ‘origin’ rather than ‘process’. If you take a beautiful braised shoulder of lamb as an example, it definitely won’t be manipulated in seven different ways. The aim is not to dazzle or intimidate diners,’ continues Goffe-Wood, ‘but to create a relaxed, inviting environment in which to enjoy a delicious plate of food that relies on excellent sourcing.’ The hotel’s resident sommelier, Esme Groenewald, who holds a prestigious Cape Sommelier qualification, will be tweaking the drinks list to reflect ‘proudly Stellenbosch’ and regionally sourced wines, craft beers and artisanal cocktail ingredients.
With its sophisticated, eclectic interiors – a mix of contemporary and antique, local and imported furniture – Makaron provides the perfect backdrop for a new era of accessible, ‘bistro chic’ food that is rustic, authentic and modern. Watch this space. Majeka House & Spa is situated at 26-32 Houtkapper Street, Paradyskloof, Stellenbosch. Makaron Restaurant is open for Lunch: 11:00 – 21:30; for Dinner: 18:30 – 20:30, for bookings call +27 21 880 1549 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit www.majekahouse.co.za