Chef Wandile Mabaso is a creative food artist full of global experiences. He has vast international experience and has worked with internationally renowned Chefs in Michelin star restaurants in New York and Paris.
Classically trained in French cuisine, he currently specializes in contemporary French haute cuisine, where only the finest luxury ingredients are used and treated with extreme perfection in the most bespoke settings.
Today, Chef Wandile Mabaso is the owner of Les Créatifs Restaurant, which is shaking up the Johannesburg food scene with its unique offering: an experiential form of dining that takes guests on an exciting gastronomic journey.
Soweto-born chef Wandile Mabaso has an impressive culinary
pedigree. He has worked around the world at establishments including
Maison Kayser in New York under famed French chef Olivier Reginensi
and Le Meurice in Paris under the legendary Alain Ducasse (holder of
21 Michelin stars) before returning to South Africa and opening Les
Créatifs in Johannesburg. He was given the highest award that exists
for a chef in France, the Culinary Excellence of the College de France.
The exterior to the restaurant may be unassuming but there’s fine
attention to detail. The 40-seater dining space is a collaboration
between the talented chef and renowned interior designer Donald
Nxumalo. The chef’s culinary art is complemented by both the art
on the walls, which changes monthly, and the handmade, specially
designed ceramic plates by Andile Ndyalvane.
Wandile aspires to achieve the level of refinement associated with
the world’s best chefs. The food combines his global culinary journey
with the best South African produce: “I respect ingredients and try
to bring the best out of them while also adding an artistic approach.
I use French gastronomic techniques but incorporate our own South
African culture which is from where I take my inspiration,” says the
articulate and softly spoken, classically-trained maestro of his menu
which changes every fortnight.
Lobsters come from a supplier in Mozambique, chicken from Mamelodi
outside Tshwane. “If someone offers me warthog today, it will be on
my menu tomorrow,” he says. He is well-known for his sauces and jus
made from stocks that have cooked for days.
There’s a playfulness to some of his dishes – his Red Riding Hood
dessert comprises light-as-air red velvet sponge with beetroot and
strawberry gels, guava and inkomazi (maas) sauce and citrus parfait. A
large brigade in the open-plan kitchen on one side of the establishment work togethers in harmony under Wandile’s expert eye. Service is
impeccable. Diners can choose four courses from a small set-price
menu. Both wine and cocktail pairings are available.