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GT & Lizelle LundieYour Hosts

GT and Lizelle Lundie met while they were both working at Singita, a luxurious private game lodge in Mpumalanga. They set off to work their way along the culinary routes of London and Scotland together for a year.

On their return, GT was instrumental in elevating Roots (at the Cradle of Humankind) to one of the top ten restaurants in South Africa. But they could not shake the magnetic pull of the Lowveld and the desire to have their own restaurant.

The couple finally realised this dream and came full circle when they opened Orange Restaurant in Nelspruit in November 2007. Soon, they were raking in awards and catering for a full house every night.

Three years later, this husband-and-wife team seized the opportunity to bring exceptional dining to a wider audience and Zest was born.

 

Experience and Awards

GT combines a classical background and a wealth of experience with an innovative and passionate approach to food. Working with the French classics, and inspired by restaurant-goers and food-loving friends, he creates fresh and modern dishes. Read on for a brief overview of his 15-year career.

  • GT started his career as chef at Rivonia’s popular Browns Restaurant, where he had three years of valuable experience both in the kitchen and front-of-house.
  • He then moved on to Jatinga Country Lodge in White River to expand his culinary experience in a country setting.
  • A few years later, he was offered the opportunity to work at Singita (member of Relais & Chateaux and the winner of Conde Nast & Harper’s Best Business Hotel in Africa and The Middle East two years running).
  • During his time abroad, GT was fortunate to work under Michelin-star chefs at Glenapp Castle and Amberley Castle (Relais & Chateaux).
  • Returning to South Africa, GT was appointed head chef at Roots restaurant in the Cradle of Humankind.
  • GT and Lizelle set a new benchmark in the Lowveld with Orange Restaurant. Within the first year, it received an American Express Fine Dining Award, a Diners Club Diamond Award for its wine list and one of only twelve Chaîne de Rôtisseurs Blazons awarded in South Africa.
  • In 2013, Zest received Get It’s Best Fine Dining Restaurant award. It was also the only restaurant in Mpumalanga and Limpopo to receive an American Express Fine Dining Award. Zest also raked in its fifth consecutive Diners Club Diamond Award and received three flutes for the South African Wine List of the Year award.
  • GT is currently the Vice-Echanson of the Chaîne de Rôtisseurs and Ordre Mondial des Gourmets Dégustateurs. He is also the Lowveld chairman for the Chefs Association of South Africa.

Reviews

Excellent food, great service, fantastic selection of wines, great ambience, friendly and efficient waiters… Thank you!

Margie C.

This restaurant was absolutely stunning. Great tasting food, very good prompt service and very professional, and the atmosphere is calm and relaxing.

Karen V.

This restaurant always lives up to our expectations. Breakfast, lunch and dinner good food and excellent service.

Corrieta P.

Can really recommend this restaurant. Food was fantastic, service was great, cake was out of this world and the presentation was amazing.

Marijke V.

A great eatery at any time of day. Zest is a great restaurant and serves great breakfast (try the Eggs Benedict), lunch and dinner and has a very good wine list.

Simon C.