Chef Philip Alcock, who has worked both locally and globally, has joined The President Hotel in Cape Town and will be transforming the hotel kitchen with a modern approach to classic cuisine.

“I’m excited about the opportunity to expand the food offering at the President Hotel, working alongside local farms to reconnect diners to the robust flavours of seasonally sourced foods” shares Philip, who will be leading the hotel into more tapas and a la carte style menus.

The chef, listed as one of SASSI’s Trailblazer chefs because of his use of sustainable seafood, has been cooking for 33 years and brings a fresh creative touch and precision to each dish.

Born in Bicester, England, Philip worked at Michelin starred restaurants and hotels in France before meeting French restaurateur Albert Roux. It was then he realised that to take his skills to the next level, he needed to work alongside the best in the business.

“I got a job working for Marco Pierre White opening Quo Vadis, then the fastest restaurant to gain a Michelin star; I think it took us all of 4 months.” Thereafter, Philip climbed the ranks beneath one of Britain’s most respected chefs, Raymond Blanc, starting as a sous chef and after just 3 months, received a promotion to head chef and assisted in expanding the Le Petit Blanc restaurant chain.

With an itch to travel, Philip, packed his bags and knives and headed to Thailand. It was while he was in Thailand that he was contacted by Cellars Hohenort in Cape Town with a job opportunity, and without really knowing South Africa got on a plane and came over.

Upon his arrival, Philip fell in love with the Mother City. He spent several years working in both Cape Town and Johannesburg, developing his experience and lifting the culinary standards in various hotels and trendy restaurants. Philip was inspired to work at the President Hotel due to the forward thinking and direction of management – a place where he would be able to uphold the high culinary standards with the freedom to revolutionise the menus. Diners will be challenged to broaden their palates to indulge in anything from fresh oysters to Bulgogi Korean beef short ribs.