The Jolly Cook

The Jolly Cook

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A new way to experience food

My passion for food comes from my ancestors who were Sephardic Jews living in Spain.  Our food culture was greatly influenced by Mediterranean cuisine following Jewish traditions. My family were forced to flee Spain to avoid persecution and made their way through Portugal and Madeira and ended up in Rhodes Island. When the Second World War broke out my grandparents left Rhodes Island and settled in Rhodesia, now known as Zimbabwe.  I was born in Zim and immigrated to South Africa 48 years ago. 

In South Africa, my late Father became involved in restaurants and take-aways.  He opened up his first Wimpy in Sea Point which in those days had a full A la Carte Menu as well as a fast food take out menu.  At age 11, I started working at an Italian restaurant next door called Pizzeria Napolitana.   This is where I fell in love with Italian food and my passion for food grew from there.  Pizzeria opened its doors in 1958 by Mrs Barletta who cooked the most delicious Italian food.  I also assisted my father with his Wimpy Stores in Camps Bay, Sea Point, Strand Street, Rondebosch and Milnerton and I remember people queuing for the Sunday lunch roast. 

After High School, I was called up for my 2 year National Army Service and was sent to the Chefs school.  This is where I learnt so much and it also gave me a good grounding to cook for larger groups of people.  During my service, I was sent to Kimberly as their Kosher Chef and was later transferred to the Main kitchen to cook for the Officers and all the permanent force members.

After the army, my life took me on a different career path until a couple of years ago when a friend needed help in his restaurant in Hout Bay.  Cooking at home every day has always been enjoyable but getting back into the restaurant industry re-ignited my passion for food.

During lockdown I was invited to join a collective of Chefs from various Hout Bay restaurants, which we called The Bay Brigade. This was a huge success and ran for 26 weeks. The concept was to create a dish for the day that was pre-ordered. The meal was pre-cooked and the customer would simply re-heat the meal. Everyone loved the idea as it was simple and they received a delicious home cooked meal. Through this collaboration I gained so much experience and knowledge.

I will be continuing on my food journey following this concept, offering the same quality meals 5 days a week.  You can order for 2 people or for a family of 4 and have it delivered to your door fresh and ready to be re-heated when you are ready to eat.

I’m looking forward to sharing my passion with you and serving many delicious meals.