Meet Reuben Riffel
Celebrate local flavours with South Africa’s master chef, Reuben Riffel
A flair for flavour
Reuben’s culinary philosophy is proudly South African, from the fresh, indigenous ingredients to the open, friendly attitude of the team. At One&Only Cape Town, Reuben’s embodies Cape cuisine, bringing you the best that South Africa has to offer, with food to tantalise and restaurant service to make you smile.
“I’m predominately a self-taught chef, learning from outstanding chefs locally and following the careers of famous chefs abroad. My goal early on was to experiment with ingredients and bring modern techniques into my repertoire, and then incorporate the food I grew up with. This is how the concept of Reuben’s has evolved. I’m inspired by everyone – from the greatest master chefs like Nobu, to home cooks and farmers. You’ll find food that is uncontrived, fresh and simple, with deep flavours. I love to cook with South African ingredients, especially snoek, waterblommetjies, Karoo lamb, ostrich and springbok. We let the produce shine and enhance the flavour which, thanks to our abundant landscape, speaks for itself.”
Savour signature favourites
“Reuben’s Chilli Squid is a dish that has been on our menus since I opened my first restaurant, back in 2004. I’ve brought it to One&Only Cape Town, where it remains a firm favourite. It’s simple, with the crispiest and most delicate of baby squid served with a fragrant leaf salad and my signature home-made chilli syrup. The flavours are phenomenal. Also not-to-be-missed are the Springbok with Pinotage Jus, Walnut Crème and Pickled Cherries, and our Crisp Pork Belly, served with Jus, Atjar – a vegetable pickle - and Preserved Chillies and Ginger. If I’m dining myself, you’ll most likely find me devouring our Peri Peri Prawns. It’s my go-to. I love seafood and this is my all-time favourite.”
Working with wines
“Reuben’s is situated next to our stunning three-storey, glass-walled Wine Loft and savouring wine with your meal, from a familiar favourite to a rare vintage, can elaborate the flavours of your meal and elevate your dining experience. We have a large team of sommeliers at One&Only Cape Town, all of whom are completely ingrained in South Africa’s viniculture, and we’re proud to be able to share this knowledge with you. We offer wine pairings as requested and also develop monthly ‘Chef and the Vine’ dinners, where we work very closely with wine makers from across South Africa to curate menus that celebrate our food and their wines, the flavours complimenting and enhancing each other. It’s a complex process and one that I believe comes from the heart. We look forward to it every month and love to keep in such close contact with both the wine growers and our guests. Most importantly, our wine dinners are a relaxed affair, peppered with sparkling conversation that lingers long into the evening.”
Ochre brings together a kaleidoscope of heritages to create uniquely re-imagined dishes and flavours, exquisitely prepared by Head chef Chris Mare.
Explore 5,000 bottles of the world’s best wine and rare South African vintages, and taste bold, new flavours with our sommeliers.