With a stellar resume that packs centuries of culinary skills into two decades of experience, world class German-born Chef Uwe Opocensky continues to charge up and up. Best known for his recent 9-year tenure as Executive Chef at the iconic Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong, Opocensky was responsible for overseeing 10 outstanding bars and restaurants - three with Michelin stars, and all with countless awards to their names.
Opocensky’s career began as a young apprentice at the Gasthof zum Hemberg in Germany, after which he embarked on a training program under Anton Mosimann at his private dining club in London. He quickly demonstrated his natural flair in the kitchen, and rose to become Head Chef within only two years at the club. Here, he was given the opportunity to cook for the likes of The Queen, Prince Charles, President Clinton and various other noted Heads of State. He stayed for 9 more years, honing his skills and readying himself for his next post as the Executive Chef at leading five-star Anassa Hotel in Cyprus. After spending two years overseeing all aspects of kitchen operations, a demanding job at a high-profile resort property such as this, he finally made the big move over to Hong Kong. As newly-appointed Executive Chef of the prestigious Aberdeen Marina Club, Opocensky spent a few years at the helm of 5 distinctly unique dining concepts.
He then had the spontaneous idea to apply for a 6-month stage position in the creative team of Ferran Adria at the world-famous El bulli, voted the best restaurant in the world. As it turns out, he was one of only 8 chefs chosen out of the 5000 who apply every year. This 6-month period at El bulli proved crucial for Opocensky’s career, because this was where he found the ability to unleash his true potential as a chef. Opocensky returned from Spain with a keener sense of his culinary direction, and took on the position of Executive Chef at Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, to revamp the all-day dining and introduce a new food concept. Chef Opocensky’s tenure saw to the hotel’s fine dining establishment’s multiple accolades, including the Tatler Award for “Best Restaurant in Malaysia 2007-2008”.
When offered the opportunity to work at his ultimate dream destination, The Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong, he jumped at it - and the rest is history. Opocensky describes his style as “progressive gastronomy”, presenting the familiar flavours of fresh, seasonal ingredients with his own, modern and sophisticated interpretations. Currently, Opocensky enjoys newfound creative freedom in his role as Group Executive Chef of Beef & Liberty, and will be the driving force for the specialist hamburger brand’s continued growth and refinement.