“We realised there is a real niche in the market, not even for food specifically — we create a vibe,” Higgs says. “And we want to create a vibe around something like pizza, which is something that everybody eats, and elevate that experience. That’s really what we have done with Saint, in a city that deserves it.”
Like Marble, the décor in Saint is otherworldly and gorgeous: practically anything you eat in Irene Kyriacou’s carefully curated surroundings would be elevated. How could it not be when you have beautiful tapestries, 3D-mapped animation on domed roof, and a giant sculptured relief of Michelangelo’s David’s head and torso behind the bar?
It’s lush to say the least, but my eyes are fixed on the kitchen. Watching Clayton and his team seamlessly put their freshly minted pizza making training into practice as they masterfully turn shaped dough, sauce, and cheese into piping hot pizzas for the hungry Sandton masses is a real treat. But tasting it is even better.
The pizza style that they learnt and serve is classic Neapolitan: equal parts tomato base and buffalo mozzarella, neither one outshining the other, but instead existing in saucy, gooey harmony.
“When you’re eating something that is as simple as a pizza, if it’s not perfect then it’s not going to be nice,” Clayton says. “It’s one of those things in food where the more simple something is, then the harder it is to execute.”