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SA chef gets Michelin Star

South African chef, Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen, has received a Michelin Star for his restaurant in Nice, France.

02 Feb 2016

 - 2 February 2016 - 

The highest achievement for a chef is a Michelin Star. South African chef, Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen, who owns and runs his own restaurant in Nice, was  awarded a Michelin Star yesterday, Monday 1 February 2016. The announcement was tweeted yesterday as van der Westhuizen received the star for Restaurant JAN as part of French Michelin guide’s 2016 awards.

The restaurant in the Côte d'Azur is one of 52 to receive a star for 2016. Last year Restaurant JAN was voted as one of the best restaurants in the world by Conde Nast Traveller, which praised its “healthy modern cooking”.  A meal for two at the restaurants is estimated to cost around R1,800.

The South African chef, who's cooking is inspired by his grandmother, wins customers' and critics' hearts alike with a menu that often features South African favourites like biltong, mussels, fish curry and Malva pudding, among others. 

Follow this very talented chef's beautiful foodie posts on Instagram on @janhendrik2016 and marvel at the South African inspired food posts that have won him a Michelin Star. 

The 'Oscars of the Food World', the Michelin Stars are awarded annually for Michelin Guides, which are a series of annual guide books published by the French company Michelin for more than a century.  The Michelin Red Guide is the oldest European hotel and restaurant reference guide.  The acquisition or loss of a star can have dramatic effects on the success of a restaurant.

The Michelin guides use the following definitions for starred restaurants: (via Andy Hayler)

One star - Very good cooking in its category

Two stars - Excellent cooking, worth a detour

Three stars - Exceptional cuisine, worthy of a special journey

There are some other categories and symbols used, such as bib gourmand (introduced in 1997), which denotes “good cooking at moderate prices”. The allocation of stars is done annually by Michelin, based on anonymous visits by their inspectors.  The precise definition of what is looked for in a restaurant in order to gain a star is a closely guarded secret of Michelin.

However it has become a highly coveted accolade, partly due to its perceived integrity – unlike many guides, Michelin takes no advertising no hidden fees.

Japan and France are the 2 countries with the highest number of three-starred restaurants. There is no Michelin Guide available for South Africa so Michelin Stars are not awarded to chefs based here. 

A huge congratulations to Jan Hendrik for this incredible achievement. 


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