The energy and enthusiasm amongst the chefs is tangible in the new, glass-fronted kitchen at Singita Lebombo Lodge, which reopened earlier this year after a significant renovation. In keeping with the lodge’s reputation for offering the most forward-thinking, contemporary safari in Africa, the kitchen was designed by award-winning chef Liam Tomlin, who owns Chefs Warehouse in Cape Town. Singita is working in close partnership with Liam to realign, refine and modernize the approach to food and dining at its lodges.
Lebombo’s head chef, Andrew Nicholson, and his team have already benefited enormously from both the practical and creative input of Liam, who worked closely with the chefs before the lodge’s reopening and continues to do so. The most radical shift in thinking has been taking the routine out of eating. Guests can now eat anything at any time. Liam’s trademark tapas form the basis of this concept, with a selection of small plates to choose from on the lunch menu. This will encourage sharing, and exploring different tastes and flavours. The tapas-style lunches can be served anywhere on custom-designed trays, at the pool, in the bar or even on the roof terrace.
Breakfast, too, is an individual, personalized spread brought to the table to complement a concise menu of seasonally driven breakfast dishes. For those who feel peckish during the day or prefer to snack, rather than sit down to a proper meal, a focal point of Lebombo’s bar and lounge is a long deli fridge filled at different times throughout the day with individual portions of savoury and sweet nibbles, from smoothies and fruit salads to charcuterie and cheese plates, slices of terrine and pots of duck liver parfait to mini desserts.
The partnership between Liam and Singita is set to continue, as plans are in place to make the chef’s food influence felt at Singita’s other lodges and camps. The brand’s commitment to community upliftment and ‘giving back’ is also close to Liam’s heart, and he is particularly excited about renovating and equipping the Singita Chef’s School based at Lebombo’s staff village. Established in 2008, the school is one of several development programmes established by Singita to benefit conservation, communities and tourism. With plans to bring in sponsorship, the future of the training facility looks bright.
Singita Lebombo Lodge’s new kitchen is kitted out with cutting-edge, energy-saving technology and prioritises the reduction of waste. This commitment to “touching the earth lightly” is echoed in throughout the lodge and the company as a whole – visit our website to find out more about this philosophy.