Food for the body…a view for the soul…
Overlooking the magnificent Klein Drakensburg mountains is our alfresco dining area, serviced daily from the farm-style kitchen where head chef Vandi, ably assisted by sous chefs, Princess and Jefferson create a myriad of dishes for your enjoyment.
Renowned for stirring the pot in more ways than one, Vandi started her affair with food via an apprenticeship with the Institute of Culinary Art in Stellenbosch; internationally rated as the best chef school in Africa and within the top three in the world.
Vandi’s natural flair for creating a taste sensation from the most basic of ingredients and her adventurous ability to fuse flavours was recognised early on in her career and a six-month stint as a student at the highly rated La Petite Ferme restaurant in Franshoek was soon converted into a full-time position. From there she moved onto the Baia Seafood Restaurant in the busy V & A Cape Waterfront, Rust en Vrede and Haute Cabriere, all of which helped her gain valuable experience before she relocated to the lowveld in 2016.
Vandi’s menu presentations are generally delivered to guests with a twist of wicked humour, whilst her vivacious personality and infectious laugh add a constant and cheerful vibe to the Khaya kitchen!
Princess started out at Khaya Ndlovu scrubbing dishes in the scullery, all the while peeping her head around the corner to keep a watchful and secretive eye on the chef of the day. Not long after her first day of work at Khaya she asked if she could try her hand at cooking a meal, and the rest is now history for this self-trained darling of our kitchen.
As well as bringing a wealth of experience to the Khaya kitchen, Jefferson adds a measure of impressive calm to an otherwise noisy space. He trained in his native Zimbabwe at the Wilderness Safaris Chef School in Chiredzi before enjoying a spell at Harare’s famous Meikles Hotel, whereafter the lowveld beckoned again and he joined Singita Pamushana in Zimbabwe’s Malilangwe Reserve.
With two children to educate in a destabilising political situation, Jefferson sought greener pastures at the Kitchen Bar in Johannesburg where he remained for ten years until joining the Little Switzerland Dream Hotel & Resort in the northern Drakensburg. As his children were still at school in Zimbabwe, he grabbed the opportunity to move closer to his homeland when a position at Khaya Ndlovu became available.
Most of our kitchen produce is sourced locally including our very own free-range eggs, a rather ambitious project considering our location, that was started by Trevor and Lisa. The eggs are collected multiple times during the day from a highly secured and electrified chicken run, much to the frustration of the resident monkeys, mongooses, genets, pythons, and all the other egg-seeking bushveld missiles!
Our dining area comfortably seats up to 50 guests in a COVID compliant, fresh-air environment and all dietary requirements can be accommodated. Pre-bookings are essential for day guests.
Feast on an assortment of fruit, cheeses, pastries, cereals and yoghurt from our buffet selection, whilst choosing a hot breakfast from the menu where Princess’s signature ‘free-range’ eggs benedict seems to be a firm favourite
Order from our menu which changes according to the season.
Sip on a cocktail whilst the sun dips below the mountain, before enjoying a scrumptious 2,3 or 4-course dinner.
Although traditionally a British custom, Vandi, Jeff, and Princess have mastered the art of serving an all-African high tea on the Khaya Ndlovu deck, however pre-bookings are essential.
Sitting beneath a starlit night, enjoy a traditional South African braai or ox-tail potjie alongside a mesmerizing fire!