Karen Dudley

Karen Dudley is a South African chef, food writer and former restaurateur. She is best known for her iconic restaurant, The Kitchen, in Woodstock, Cape Town, a meeting point for creativity and connection. It was visited by former First Lady Michelle Obama in June 2011.

Karen Dudley came to the world of food writing along a meandering path. From a historical mansion in Washington DC, via a galley kitchen in London’s Chelsea, a monastic stint running a grand old house in Constantia, to opening the lunch spot on the streets of bad old Woodstock.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic forced The Kitchen’s closure, Karen has been putting her creative energies into developing menus for other South African restaurants that have embraced movement towards vegetable-centric dishes. She is also working in television, is a judge for the 2022 Eat Out Woolworths Restaurant Awards, and continues to write about food and whatever else is on her mind.