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Taste of Africa: Chef Coco’s favorite places

Chef Coco shares his expert recommendations for incredible places to eat, sleep and drink for a taste of Africa.

Our newest ambassador, the award-winning Chef Coco, is now on TWISPER sharing his expert recommendations for a taste of Africa. We’re all about discovering incredible places to eat, sleep and drink around the world. So we’re especially excited to welcome Chef Coco on board and explore his favorite African restaurants, hotels and bars.

A man whose passion for food goes back generations, Coco Reinarhz – Chef Coco, to us – has honed his culinary talents across Africa. Growing up at his mother’s side in her restaurant in Kinshasa, he did his formal training in Belgium and has since worked in a number of world-class restaurants in the DR Congo, Ivory Coast and now in South Africa, where his restaurants are a must-visit for foodies in Johannesburg. He blends his unique flair with his expert knowledge of different cuisines from across Africa to create mouth-watering modern cooking.

Let’s join him on a journey around Africa via his favorite places to eat, sleep and drink from Tunisia to South Africa…

Must-visit on a foodie tour of Jo-burg

In the heart of Sandton, one of Johannesburg’s most vibrant, modern neighborhoods, is Épicure. Chef Coco’s latest venture, this sophisticated – yet warmly welcoming – restaurant really does have a space for everyone. From cozy corners for romantic rendezvous to private dining areas for business meetings, a beautiful terrace for lazy lunches and a walled garden for kids to run around in.

The food matches the mood. As a leading figure in modern African cuisine, Chef Coco expertly combines tastes from all over the continent to create exquisite dishes that suit fine dining and street food vibes. Of course, the menu is constantly adapting as Coco gets fresh bursts of inspiration. Whether you’re enjoying an homage to West African seafood or the luxurious comfort of southern African goodness, one thing remains the same: high-quality ingredients brought together for a mouth-watering taste of Africa. And always accompanied by excellent wines and an impressive cigar bar, if that takes your fancy.

The place to go for a night out in Sandton

Continuing our culinary exploration of Johannesburg, Chef Coco’s next recommendation is for hip bar-restaurant Rockets Bryanston. This lifestyle venue provides a unique space to enjoy the best things in life with the people you love.

Beautiful art, great live music, excellent cocktails and delicious food make this an essential stop on a night out in Sandton. Wherever you sit at Rockets – sliding into a soft leather booth in the plant-filled interior or chilling on the rooftop terrace – you’re gonna have a great evening. And if Chef Coco recommends the burgers, you should probably get a burger 🍔

Escape to a luxury bush lodge in the country

From an unforgettable night in the city to an unforgettable taste of Africa’s natural beauty. In the lush countryside of northern South Africa, just 30 minutes’ drive from the spectacular Kruger National Reserve, is Lira Boutique Lodge & Spa.

As if lavish rooms – contemporary décor with traditional artistic touches – and a beautiful natural setting weren’t enough, the service here is incredible. From in-room spa services to safari trips to the nearby reserve, everything is designed to ensure a perfectly relaxing stay. And after you enjoy a heavenly massage without having to leave your room, you can rinse off in the (private, but still) outdoor shower to feel truly immersed in nature.

Indulge in a sensory journey through Congolese cuisine

Chef Coco takes us next to the city where he grew up, Kinshasa. And more specifically, he takes us to one of the Congolese capital’s best restaurants: Arome. You’ll find yourself in a wonderfully inviting restaurant with seriously enviable interiors (stunning, massive wooden table, we’re looking at you 😍).

Led by the incredibly talented Chef Christian, you’ll embark on a culinary experience leaving you wanting more. Through his weekly changing menu, he showcases a tantalizing fusion of Congolese and international cuisine using the finest local ingredients. Drooling just looking at these photos…

Enjoy legendary luxury in Kigali

A newly opened boutique hotel in Kigali, Mythos has brought a new touch of understated elegance to the Rwandan capital. Located in the charming Kiyovu district, it offers its guests a home away from home from its beautiful rooms to its uniquely Rwandan hospitality experience.

Its restaurant is equally impressive, serving up a taste of Africa alongside international creations with panoramic views of Kigali as its backdrop. Chef Coco recommends the breakfast as the best in town, and we’re also eyeing up the Saturday high tea. Delicious!

Experience pure tranquility in Nairobi

Sankara means “source of tranquility” in Sanskrit – and this luxury five-star hotel definitely lives up to its name. You wouldn’t think it was located in the heart of Nairobi from the peaceful atmosphere that immediately envelops you on arrival. Although you’d know from the spectacular view from the rooftop pool 😉

With elegant rooms decorated with the perfect fusion of tradition and chic modernity and six world-class bars and restaurants, you almost wouldn’t need to leave the hotel. But you will – the incomparable attractions of the Kenyan capital are outside just waiting to enchant you.

Find a little piece of paradise in Ivory Coast

Nicknamed the Palace of Assinie-Mafia, a coastal resort in southeastern Cote d’Ivoire, La Maison d’Akoula is a dreamy place to stay. Located between the land and the sea, it offers accommodation in luxurious safari suites or lagoon-side bungalows.

A fine dining restaurant, an infinity pool and an incredible art collection put this high up on our bucket list. Combine that with its spectacular natural setting – coconut groves, an orchid garden and a private beach – and we can see why Chef Coco calls it mind-blowing. Who’s joining us?

Get a taste for tradition in Bizerte

Last but not least, from South Africa up to the northernmost area of the continent in Tunisia. Chef Coco loves Restaurant lounge le Quai Bizerte for its fabulous service, excellent food and spectacular views of Bizerte’s marina.

The restaurant brings modern twist to traditional Tunisian cooking. And in a city with 3000 years of history, that’s a lot of tradition to live up to. Plus, its unbeatable location means that 1. it’s ideal for watching a bewitching sunset over the sea and 2. the seafood is exquisite 🦞🤤

Follow Chef Coco on TWISPER for more expert tips

So, who’s joining us on a year-long trip around the African continent to visit everywhere Chef Coco has recommended? 🤩

Hopefully this has inspired you to indulge in a taste of Africa, whether at home or on your next trip (all of these places are on the app, so you can save them to Try Outs)!

Hungry for more? Follow Chef Coco on TWISPER to discover more of his favorite places to eat, sleep and drink around the world.

About the expert

Multi-award-winning chef and restaurateur Coco Reinarhz shares his expert recommendations for incredible places to eat, sleep and drink across Africa and around the world.

Find him on TWISPER