What makes us special
- CHEF CANDICE PHILIP describes her approach to cooking as an ‘'Alice in Wonderland’ kind of scenario” by putting her own interpretation into dishes, and you will definitely be taken on a whimsical journey of play, fun, taste and excitement, loaded with decadence, as she helps you rediscover every sense you thought you had, and then help you create new ones she thinks you need in order to really understand the magic she creates in her kitchen.
- She is well-respected for her focus and calm demeanour, and highly regarded for her skill and passion. She has the innate ability to conjure up imaginative flavours, making them work within one complete dish.
- After 13 years at the Saxon, she opened Grei, the fine-dining restaurant at the Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa on 19 April 2018. - “Since joining the Saxon, I’ve been privileged to work alongside some of the country’s best Chefs – including Chef David Higgs and Chef Luke Dale Roberts,” she says. “I’m excited to bring my own long-held vision to life in the form of Grei. I really want people to come and appreciate what we’re doing – to take the time and enjoy the journey.”
- Chef Candice’s grace and reverence for her craft have seen industry professionals honour her with sought after accolades and Olympic stature, and most recently, Chef Candice and Grei Restaurant have been listed in the EAT-OUT Top 30 Restaurants in South Africa, and have just been selected for the inaugural list of The World's 50 Best - ’50 Best Discovery’! and nominated as World’s Leading Fine Dining Hotel Restaurant 2018 by the World Travel Awards – and again in 2019 and they have been awarded a 2 plate rating by JHP Gourmet Guide – ‘exceptional dining that demands a detour’.
- GREI, which loosely translates from Portuguese as “a society of people” blends together Chef Candice’s love of unusual pairings, her passion for herbaceous flavours and her signature style of intricately-plated dishes. Appropriately, her menu has the aroma and flavour of the herbs running through it. Dishes feature unusual pairings and natural, succulent flavours. The menu highlights the three key flavours from each dish. - “We’ve always worked with the garden and its produce, focusing first on organic and heirloom vegetables, and later looking to the proteins,” she says. “But for me, the herbs are often the little things that are overlooked. Not only do they bring an enticing aroma to the food, but also great flavour and colour.”
- Centred around a palate of grey tones, Chef Candice Philip’s new fine-dining restaurant promises to be a vivid burst of colour for local and international food lovers, and the design conceptualisation and installation was inspired by the Scandinavian’s simple, minimal and sophisticated approach to plating, food and restaurants. The space is classic and elegant, but also understated and unintimidating.
- The intimate, 32-seater restaurant is located upstairs at the Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa in Sandhurst. It overlooks the trees and indigenous gardens of the five-star location. The restaurant also features a small private dining room and retains its open-theatre kitchen which has become synonymous with the space.
- “Essentially, grey is colour without colour, and this has been a huge inspiration in developing the look and feel of the space, and menu. We’re making the often-overlooked herbs the hero of our dishes to bring colour, aroma and flavour to the dishes. I’m excited to bring my own long-held vision to life in the form of Grei. I really want people to come and appreciate what we’re doing – to take the time and enjoy the journey.”
- The menu is a six-course tasting menu, paired with a combination of international and local wines. There is also be a non-alcoholic pairing option as well as vegetarian- and pescatarian-suited menus.
- There is a holistic benefit in the herbs running through our menu – the health benefits of these herbs combined with organic and plant-based options means that we can keep our menu healthy and inviting.
- We get the majority of our fresh herbs and vegetables from Sarapana, Saxon’s organic herb and vegetable garden. This garden is maintained by Sought After Seedlings – a great partner to have!