Principal: Chef Francois Ferreira

François Ferreira…passion personified!  When one studies the life and achievements of this energetic personality you cannot miss the thread of passion which runs deep and vigorously through each moment he lives, works and plays. At the epicentre of it all, just one thing shines through…food

…cooking it…

François Ferreira is known as South Africa’s Food Evangelist, a perfect description, as the passion with which he LIVES AND BREATHES food is pure inspiration. Also a highly acclaimed author, the public is invited to cook with François from his award-winning books.

…sharing it…

Inside and outside the home, he is a true professional.  Conversing like a diplomat, knowing the correct protocol is the priceless experience that François accumulated while managing the households of two State Presidents and an Administrator-General from 1988 to 1994.

…discovering it…

The Teaching Spirit of François shines through in all the areas of his life and he is constantly searching and discovering new ingredients, dishes and new talent.

…re-inventing it…

Recognised by the most prestigious culinary organisations in South Africa, François is at the heart of the South African culinary world.

…designing it…

The experience François accrued at the State Presidency stirred his passion for creating the perfect ambience and a welcoming table.  He revels in teaching the art of the meal and creating the ultimate experience for all his guests

…tasting it…

François is a member of the South African Brandy Guild for promoting responsible use of South African Brandy, and is affiliated to the Cape Wine Academy. He believes that good food should be served with well-paired wine, excellent service and a welcoming ambience

Vice – Principal: Denise Lindley

Food and Wine connoisseur – elegant, visionary, innovative and creative…these are all attributes that best describe Denise Lindley- a British lady with a world of experience, having worked in industrial catering in the UK, Botswana, Swaziland, Mozambique and South Africa. Her last outpost now is George, where she is now concentrating on her latest role as Vice Principal of the Francois Ferreira Academy.

As a partner to Francois Ferreira, Denise is totally dedicated to service excellence and customer satisfaction and believes in being proactive. She believes in people’s abilities and empowering them and would rather work with people with a positive attitude than competent people – attitude and passion – she is passionate about ….not just food, but life!

Previous career experiences include:

Chief Operating Officer and General Manager of Servco Catering based in Mozambique, and grew the company from 7 contracts to 23 by the time the company was sold  She trained all her many Mozambican managers to  efficiently handle their roles, and operated some extremely challenging remote mining and road camps, producing some 25,000 meals a day.

An ex accredited assessor for the Tourism Grading Council of South Africa, grading hotels and restaurants.

Denise excelled early on in her career as a trainer and manager, and qualified in the UK in Industrial Catering Management, and subsequently has worked all her life in the catering industry. Previously, Denise worked for Compass Group, the largest catering company in the world, where she latterly was responsible for running the mining division, and all the company business in Botswana. She was appointed the first female Area Manager in the company in 1986, when it was just not “done” to have females in these demanding roles.

Denise was then transferred to the Northern Transvaal to run the first government tender contracts that the company had ever been awarded, and became the pioneer in Compass of working in remote “virgin” areas, where she worked alone in some very dangerous situations.

Prior to joining Compass, Denise worked for Fedics, the first industrial catering company in South Africa, where she cut her teeth going to Mafeking, to open the fledgling University of Bophuthatswana (UNIBO), and was then transferred to Swaziland for 2 years to be the Catering Consultant at the University of Swaziland (UNISWA).