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Dieuveil Malonga

Emerson Collective Fellowship

Using the power of fine dining to accelerate food-related solutions to the climate crisis.

Headshot of Dieuveil Malonga

Dieuveil Malonga learned to cook from his grandmother in the Republic of the Congo, where he was born. When he moved to Germany at age 13, he brought that passion for food with him. Afro-fusion cooking became his primary mode of expression, blending flavors and ingredients, from Africa and from the West, both modern and traditional. After going to culinary school and working in some of Germany’s top restaurants, he opened Meza Malonga in Kigali, Rwanda, in 2020, which has been named one of the world’s best restaurants by Food & Wine magazine.

Now, Malonga is turning his attention to training the next generation of African chefs in his own kitchen and through Chefs In Africa, a collective that connects and highlights chefs from the African continent, while showcasing food practices and products that are kind to the environment and originate from “our people, our lands, our culinary techniques.” Chefs In Africa has brought together 4,000 (and counting) chefs, all sharing climate-friendly approaches to food. 

As an Emerson Collective Fellow, Malonga is building Culinary Innovation Village, a first-of-its-kind food innovation space in Musanze, Rwanda. The village will include a culinary research center, a restaurant, and an experimental farm. It will aim to accelerate food-related solutions to the climate crisis, from studying insects and ancient grains as alternatives to meat, rethinking water and food waste in rural contexts, to experimenting with ways to reduce greenhouse gasses from food transportation. Culinary Innovation Village will also be a home base for training chefs from across the continent, generating opportunities for women and young people while promoting “gastrotourism.”