Three generations

The Silwood School of Cookery – AWARD WINNING and Internationally rated the BEST chefs school in Africa.  Silwood is South Africa’s oldest cookery school, boasting student achievement unmatched by any other cookery school in the country.

The school was founded in 1964 by Lesley Faull, Commanderie des Cordons Bleus de France. Over the past 59 years Silwood has earned itself a world class reputation and   has remained a family run business. Lesley’s daughter, Alicia Wilkinson, Commanderie des Cordons Bleus de France, is the present principal of the school, assisted by her daughter Carianne Wilkinson, International restaurant judge and director of SA Chefs Association. The family continues to produce international top chefs.




Silwood graduates can be found in the top kitchens of the world from Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck & Dinner restaurants, Raymond Blanc’s Le Manoir, Gordon Ramsay’s and even Noma Restaurant, Copenhagen.
Nationally Silwood students and graduates dominate the kitchen teams of our top restaurants such as The Test Kitchen (SA no 1 restaurant),  La Colombe and Chefs Warehouse. Londolozi Private Game Reserve to the Greenhouse at the Cellars Hohenort; from Food selectors at Woolworths, top caterers such as Escoffier, Annalize Buchanan and Pommegranite and restaurant owners such as Four & Twenty – Silwood students only train under the best.

Silwood offers a broad based culinary education equipping the graduates with the classic skills required in top international kitchens.

The school is surrounded by spacious organic gardens where students relax between lessons and pick and use their home grown herbs and vegetables.

Silwood does not offer a quick fix solution but a complete culinary education. Silwood graduates dominate all areas of the food industry– proof that Silwood’s training is the best.

Location & Facilities

Nestled at the foot of the iconic Table Mountain, Silwood is situated in leafy Rondebosch, Cape Town’s top educational suburb, the school is an original 17th century Cape farm. The stables have been converted into state of the art kitchens, giving a feeling of rich heritage and tradition combined with the new and cutting edge. At Silwood, we believe that the best chefs have a deep understanding of the ingredients they cook with, so students learn how to grow and harvest their own produce in our organic vegetable and herb gardens.

Our teaching kitchens are equipped with state of the art, premium quality equipment, such as Le Creuset cookware, Kitchen Aid mixers and blenders, Thermomix and Whirlpool ovens.