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Picnic

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t’s a beautiful day at Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat, the luxury South African property that readers of Condé Nast Traveler voted third on its list of best hotels and resorts in the world. And while I’m excited for our early morning visit to explore the San rock art, some of which dates back 10,000 years, Executive Chef Ryan Weakley is already hard at work. “The first few months have been busy but fantastic,” says Weakley, whose typical day is from 07:30 to 22:30. “I have great support from management and the owners. I’ve also adopted a team of skilled staff (trained by Floris Smith, Bushmans Kloof ’s previous multi-talented chef

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extraordinaire), which has made my job much easier.”

him from the city to Sabi Sabi Earth Lodge where he worked as executive chef for the first time. Eighteen months later he moved to Wilderness Safaris’ Mombo Lodge in the Okavango Delta in Botswana as Executive Chef, before joining Bushmans Kloof in Weakley, who hails from Queenstown in January this year. Not only did this allow the Eastern Cape of South Africa, studied at the Institute for Culinary Arts in Stellenbosch, him to work at a prestigious Relais and Châteaux property in the Red Carnation where he graduated in 2006 with a Diploma Hotel group, but it fed into the love for in Culinary Arts and Baking. He started his nature. That’s important to someone who hospitality career as Chef de Partie at Ginja enjoys rock climbing, scuba diving, and restaurant in Cape Town, where he was anything to do with the outdoors. runner-up in the Jeunes Commiss Rôtisseurs “I love the diversity and creativity of Competition, Bailliage du Cap. the job, and being able to work anywhere In 2008, he opened the Vineyard Hotel’s in the world,” he says. “But when I Myoga restaurant under chef Mike Bassett. moved into the game lodge industry, But in May 2010, his love for the bush drew

Balancing flavour and beauty

WINTER 2016/17

Profile for FWT Magazine

FWT Magazine: food wine travel - Issue 6, Winter 2016/17 - World Cuisine  

It gives us great pleasure to bring you another issue, this one themed “World Cuisine.” On this journey we skip around the planet, pausing h...

FWT Magazine: food wine travel - Issue 6, Winter 2016/17 - World Cuisine  

It gives us great pleasure to bring you another issue, this one themed “World Cuisine.” On this journey we skip around the planet, pausing h...

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