Dion studied management at the Swiss Hotel School, but his love for cooking saw him undertaking a self-study programme to become a chef. This passionate chef was inspired by a well-known American chef as well as local chef and mentor, Rudi Liebenberg under whom he currently works at The Belmond Mount Nelson.
Being part of a national culinary team is one of the greatest achievements for a chef in any country, so representing South Africa and wearing the national colours means a lot to me because I’ve always been a hardcore patriot. This is what I have worked for my entire career!” says Dion when asked what being on the South African National Culinary Team means to him.
Dion is in charge of the cold starter in the hot kitchen and the tapas items on the five course festive menu. He has a particular affinity for the starter dish (Cape Crayfish ‘Malay’ – poached crayfish, pressed carrot terrine, carrot mayonnaise and Malay curry sauce) because the subtle Indian flavours of the ingredients are reminiscent of his childhood and showcase our heritage.
Dion currently works as a Chef de Cuisine at The Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town.
The South African National Culinary Team will be participating in the IKA Culinary Olympics under the auspices of the South African Chefs Association. Their participation has been made possible through the generous sponsorship of headline sponsor LSC/Imperial, along with partners City Lodge Hotel Group, ChefWorks, Turn ‘n Slice and N1 Restaurant Suppliers.
Starter of Cape Crayfish Malay – poached crayfish, pressed carrot terrine, carrot mayonnaise and Malay curry sauce.
Main course of Springbok ‘Masakhane’ – pan-roasted loin of Springbok, rolled veal sweetbreads, red cabbage and cider purée, savoy cabbage and Boulangére potato.
Dessert is a textured Splash of Raspberry, Rose, Coconut and White Chocolate – coconut sand, coconut sorbet, coconut sponge, rose jelly, rose meringue, raspberry mousse, and raspberry jelly.