Patron of Franschhoek’s ‘Le coin Francais’, Darren Badenhorst has opened his second establishment in the Cape Winelands village. ‘Le chêne’, meaning ‘The Oak Tree’, is located in the Manor House at Leeu Estates, part of the Leeu Collection. The restaurant pays homage to Franschhoek by utilising only the finest local ingredients whilst celebrating the valley’s heritage through its cuisine, concept and interiors.
The all-new, stand-alone restaurant Le chêne aims to raise the dining experience at Leeu Estates to another level, complementing the beautiful interiors, spa and gardens, for which the hotel is already well-known. Badenhorst and his team will also manage every other aspect of the food and beverage offering at Leeu Estates, including in-room dining, breakfast and event catering.
To complement the food and to add an historic touch to Le chêne, Badenhorst has commissioned a stunning 6m long 750 year old yellow wood feature table from Pierre Cronje, along with custom-built chairs that echo the sophisticated elegance associated with both Leeu Estates and Le coin Francais.
Says Badenhorst, “I am both honoured and excited to be opening my second restaurant in the village I love so much, and I could not wish for a better brand partner. Leeu Collection’s quality standards are second to none and I believe my creative and sophisticated cuisine will fit seamlessly into Leeu Estates, creating a synergy of two world class brands under one roof. I feel privileged to be a part of their culinary journey.”