The Beginning – 2019

Woodfired Grill Company was Founded in early 2019 with a few key points in mind. Firstly and foremost lets be honest, Food. Nothing beats great food. Secondly has to be fire.  Fire is at the core of all our souls and needs a place in all our lives. Thirdly, a deep passion for building things. I have noticed in South Africa we have this diversion from fabrication, nobody wants to do it. Everyone wants to be the middle man and just take a cut. Its very upsetting to me and I really want to try and change this in South Africa. Finally, well we all need to make a living don’t we?

My first workshop was an old chapel in Maitland, Cape Town. As you can see not much more than a wooden door and a dream.

My Story

In the beginning of 2019, 2nd of January to be exact. I awoke for the first day of work of the new year. It was as always 5:10am and I had just had a week off. Lets just put this in context, any other time in my life, all I would want to do after a weeks holiday, is go back to work. 


This time however was different. I turned to my wife and told her how for the first time in my life I truly did not want to go into work. She jumped in “Don’t worry its just because its your first day back”. Quickly followed by “…don’t do anything silly”. So I jumped in the car for my 15 minute drive to work. Progressively pondering deeper into my own thoughts. One of those self conversations where everyone around you would probably think you were crazy. That is to say if they over heard you talking to yourself in the second, third and forth person.

As I pulled into the parking area, my heart sank. You see a year before I had a purpose. I ran an Engineering Shop, and I created some really awesome products. However, in the last year I had no purpose, no true outcome. I stood at my car looking at the large face brick building and that voice in my head would keep telling me “It’s fine, this will pass”.


It was about an hour before our MD pulled in. I went up to his office to check up on what was on the cards for the week. Somewhere between the bottom of those stairs and the end of that conversation. I made up my mind, this was not how I wanted to spend the rest of my days. That safe voice I’ve always listened to was shouting in the background “ARE YOU CRAZY”. As the words “tendering my resignation” came out. 


So I left work about two hours after getting there with the biggest Smile on my face since my Wedding Day. Having no plan with what was next or what I was going to do for money. This was a strange and wonderful feeling. As I pulled into the driveway my wife was at the door. A very confused look on her face as I walked up to her. I like to think she asked me “why are you so happy?”, however I can not be sure. I can be sure that there were tears of joy as I told her what I had just done. Although they were very short lived considering my complete state of ecstasy.


It took about a week to come up with the idea of Woodfired Grill Company. I sat down and wrote down all the things I love doing. But here comes the problem, I love a lot of things.

You see, we were making Grills at the Engineering shop before it was shut down. But with no place to build them, they were no longer made. And all that hard work was for nothing it seemed. So I went back to the MD and asked if it were possible to go into this line of work on my own. In the next month I secured Woodfired Grill Company domain name, “”. I went off on a tangent building my own website.. That’s right the one you looking at was designed by me, not too bad for a crash course. 


Around four months notice later, finishing off where I used to work and handing over projects. I moved into a little premises and continued to make Grills. At this point I know I’m about to lose it. Starting to talk to myself again. This is what happens when you are a one man band filling all the roles.

To name just a few:

  • CEO
  • Accountant
  • Book Keeper
  • Receptionist
  • procurement agent
  • Designer
  • Engineer
  • Welder
  • Machinist
  • Marketing Agent
  • Website Designer
  • Floor Sweeper

The list never ends.  I find new positions to fill every day.


So almost no capital to speak of, just a roof over my head, a welder and a wooden door on some trestles as a welding table.  A bond to pay every month, a wife, dog and three cats to feed. At least I have three orders right? And I still have two to complete which will keep the bank manager at bay for a little while. 

For now that’s all I’ve got.  I’m writing this as I go and I am a few months behind on the story at the moment as I have been really busy… but that’s a good thing. 

As a final note, No matter how busy you are take the time to spend time with your friends and family, the quality type of time talking and playing board games or playing outside. Even better start a fire.