VISION: At The Table

At The Table: Home and Serveware from Celebrity Chefs

COMPILED BY Annemarie Meintjes WORDS Robyn Alexander PHOTOS Supplied

These celebrity chefs have gone beyond creating inspirational food to dreaming up special takes on what we should be serving it on.


Renowned for his trendsetting taste and his ability to wear multiple hats – as chef, restaurateur, interior designer and even hotelier – Jacques Erasmus has long combined his culinary skills with a distinctive design ethos. Both Jonkmanshof, his exquisite country retreat in Montagu, and his ever-evolving Cape Town restaurant, Hemelhuijs, showcase his unique aesthetic.

A perfectly judged blend of old Cape Dutch style with Eastern influences, his homeware offering includes the full range of the minimalist crockery used at Hemelhuijs every day, as well as the delightfully baroque “Boerendelft” plates embellished with hand-painted blue or gold designs. The brand is all about “a story of dedication to the art and craft of the human hand”,


Yves Klein Blue Vases

These exquisite vases come in three sizes.

From R1 500

Jacques says – and his range of fine products for the home also includes whimsical candleholders, pure linen napkins and tea towels, and scented candles featuring the aromas of the garden at Jonkmanshof. Simply dreamy…


Another South African chef who considers the settings in which he serves his food, and the plates that will best complement it, as much as he does the creation of his Michelin-star dishes is Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen. Those fortunate enough to have eaten in Jan’s two restaurants on the French Riviera, JAN and MARIA, and who have followed his career via his television series and food magazine, also called JAN, recognise the ongoing development of a fresh, slightly Francophone but also very homely take on South African style in his homeware.


“My heritage informs everything I do,” says Jan. His pieces currently reflect the aesthetic of his latest establishment, KLEIN JAN, at Tswalu in the Kalahari – hence the robust leather aprons and earthy tactility of his serveware items – and his website also offers a variety of delightful, custom-designed toile napery, nostalgia-tinged crockery, and a wide range of classic kitchen essentials.


Internationally acclaimed chef Yotam Ottolenghi is the author of multiple best-selling cookbooks, and so famous that his sort of cooking is frequently described as “Ottolenghi-style”. His early restaurants served food on large platters, and bowls of salads-as-meals, displayed in tempting heaps from which guests could select their favourites. So it’s an almost overdue step for this game-changing creative to be launching his own range of ceramics, glassware and serveware, which he recently did in a collaboration with Serax.


Designed with input from regular Ottolenghi visual collaborator, Sicilian artist Ivo Bisignano, the range is colourful and playful, featuring simple prints of bell peppers and other vegetables, and abstract faces. All pieces will be used in Ottolenghi eateries, and fans will be able to take them home too. Asked to identify his favourite item, Yotam says, “I love the large serving platters: the mere size allows them to shine, and they are ideal for serving our salads.”