Meet Executive Chef Treasure Makwanise
Local flavours in the spotlight
Our Executive Chef Treasure Makwanise delves deep into the history of Rwandan cuisine to bring his guests a fresh, modern take on a traditional menu. In the kitchens of One&Only Nyungwe House, he is inspired by Rwanda’s rich heritage and local ingredients to create exciting recipes and delicious dishes.
From strength to strength
Zimbabwean-born Executive Chef Treasure Makwanise’s reputation precedes him. His story is a one of resilience and determination, his journey taking him from living on the streets of Cape Town as a teenager, to being welcomed into the kitchens at One&Only Cape Town. Here, he launched his career in the culinary arts, first as a steward and rapidly climbed the ranks under his mentor, the chef and restaurateur Jason Miller, until Treasure’s current role as our talented Executive Chef at One&Only Nyungwe House.
In his own words...
“Before a guest checks in, we find out all of their dietary requirements, and when they arrive, I will personally ensure nothing has been missed. We then create daily menus based on the freshest available produce with dishes that each celebrate the local ingredients. I’m passionate about working with my dedicated team and being creative. That’s what I love about One&Only Nyungwe House: it gives us the opportunity to invent new dishes, sauces and infusions every day.”
“Our chef’s garden at One&Only Nyungwe House started small, and has now expanded to around 100 square-metres. We are in the middle of the forest with a huge landscape, so why not plant all of our own produce? At the moment around 30 percent of our produce come from the garden depending on the season including lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, zucchini, asparagus, onions, micro-herbs, leeks, beetroot, radish, broccoli, cauliflower, dodo (local spinach) and potatoes. We’ve also started a project with chickens, so we have our own eggs. We used to have goats as I really wanted to make our own goats’ cheese, but they were so naughty and ate my garden!”
“Part of my role is to dig deep into the roots of Rwandan food and share it with our guests. Dishes like agatago, using plantain with a protein like fish or chicken are popular, as is cooking pumpkin leaves in a house-made peanut sauce. We make our own peanut butter – we have lots of locally-grown nuts in Rwanda, which is incredible. We are creating a big open kitchen where our guests can learn different skills such as making peanut butter and tea-infused butters. I use a lot of tea from our plantations in our cooking and the results are amazing. Tea adds a hint of bitterness; everyone needs to try our tea pesto and tea pasta with a parmesan foam and roasted almonds – eat it once and you’ll never forget it.”
Experience an authentic Rwandan tea ceremony in our graceful Tea Lounge, pairing local brews with decadent African pastries.
Honest food that comes from the heart; allow Executive Chef Treasure and his expert team to introduce you to the flavours of East African cuisine with fresh, organic produce from our own garden and surrounding tea plantations.