Head Chef - Isca Stoltz

I like to describe myself as a "young, independent woman," but deep down, I'm just a sentimental old soul who adores food and the bustling atmosphere of the kitchen.

Growing up in a family that lives and breathes food, I have countless memories of my grandmother and me folding koeksisters and peeling litchis together. My true passion lies in creating nostalgic experiences through food.

From a young age, I've always dreamt of a career in the culinary arts. Little did I know that at the age of 26, I would find myself leading a sustainable seafood restaurant in the heart of Cape Town - it truly is a dream come true!

I began my journey in some of Cape Town's top restaurants, such as The Test Kitchen and The Pot Luck Club, alongside culinary legends Frederico Dias, Luke Dale Roberts, and Ryan Cole. Eventually, I made my way to Muizenberg, where I played the role of Head Pastry Chef at The Skotnes, working closely with my dear friend and Head Chef, Phil de Villiers.

However, my adventurous spirit led me to seek new challenges. Taking a chance, I applied to become the Sous Chef at Belly of the Beast. After they saw me scoffing down Anouchka's baked Alaska, I was offered the job - a decision I can confidently say was the best I've ever made.

Working alongside Neil and Anouchka at Belly of the Beast, I absorbed valuable lessons ranging from the business side of things to honing my cooking skills. Combining this knowledge with my years of experience, I've added my own unique twist to create a culinary style that defines me.

Neil and Anouchka have been a tremendous inspiration, showcasing how I envision running my own kitchen. Though that day may be just around the corner, the respect they showed to the entire staff at Belly of the Beast is something I aim to carry over to Galjoen.

My vision for Galjoen is to create a warm and inviting atmosphere where people come for exceptional food, excellent wine, and a memorable time. I am fully aware that embarking on this incredible journey at Galjoen will present challenges, but with Neil and Anouchka's unwavering support every step of the way, I'm confident in our ability to push boundaries and exceed expectations.

I am overflowing with excitement as we prepare to open the doors of Galjoen and leave my mark on the diverse culinary landscape of Cape Town.