There’s a trend in Joburg restaurants where we import our chefs from Europe – just look at Yohann from France doing an amazing job at the EB Social Kitchen & Bar. AtholPlace Hotel & Villa in Atholl has done the same. All the way from the Netherlands and boasting a passion for the kitchen, the 25-year-old Omar Koenen is a big deal.
New Head Chef Omar Koenen joined AtholPlace Hotel & Villa in February. Before this, Chef Koenen trained at various Bib Gourmand- and Michelin-rated restaurants in the Netherlands and Belgium. Since his arival in SA in 2015, Koenen worked at the Ellerman House in Cape Town.
Koenen’s “global menu” is a fusion with Asian and Indian flavours to create dynamic and umami offerings that will leave patrons booking weekly tables well in advance.
Koenen’s goal is to work alongside the established team at AtholPlace and share his food philosophy – which is that food and cooking equals love. As the new chef at the helm set to develop new ideas alongside the team, Koenen plans to bring his enthusiasm and experience to the kitchen.
By Shawn Greyling