Thoughts from the Saxon Head Pastry Chef
My culinary venture started with me completing my studies in professional cookery, I then received an opportunity to work abroad in the U.S.A at various country clubs and spent 5 years honing my skills and working with top class chefs who featured on the American Culinary Olympic team. Upon my return to South Africa I completed my diploma in patisserie and enjoyed a short stint at the Hilton Hotel in Cape Town before embarking to the Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa in Cape Town where I spent 5 years.
A family move brought me to Johannesburg and the Saxon Hotel, Spa and Villas where I will head up the pastry kitchen.
My role as pastry chef is menu design, preparation of all pastry products, training of pastry staff on desserts and techniques and assume overall responsibility and accountability that a high quality product leaves the kitchen at all times. Quality plays an extremely important and vital role to me in terms of execution of services the Saxon Hotel renders to our highly valued customers, I must reiterate that highly valued customers is not singling out anyone but simply means every single customer who passes through our doors at the hotel.
With the competitive nature of our business, I extend a high degree of emphasis to the quality of desserts and continuously keep up with modern trends in the endeavour to not only satisfy our guests but to exceed their expectations. Increased global competition has led to increased client expectation and to stay competitive and maintain good economic performance I would need to enhance our efficiency and effectiveness in terms of how I embrace our customers. A good starting point and I have started this is to position myself as a contagious leader and develop the staff in order for us to produce the best patisseries in town or the country.
At the Saxon I follow a simple strategy but certainly effective and it goes, train my staff so that they can leave but treat them well so they do not want to leave and then creating an environment where champions are inevitable, I regard my team as champions and this is the culture we create in our pastry kitchen at the Saxon which will in turn allow us to be the best.
By Nathan Jacobs
Head Pastry Chef