Nils Henkel began his training as a chef in 1986 at the Romantik Hotel Voss house in Eutin.
He then continued his career at Le Jardin Raphael Hotel, Heinz Wehmann and Il Ristorante.
In 1997, he started working in the kitchen at the castle hotel Lerbach’s restaurant with Dieter Müller. In 2008 he became head chef and in 2010, he saw the restaurant take a completely new design and a new name: Gourmet Restaurant Lerbach.
At restaurant Lerbach, guests enjoy its modern conservatory and a new German cuisine which is confident and resourceful, balanced with different textures and seasonal produce.
In 2009, chef Nils Henkel was awarded The Gault Millau Chef of the Year. In 2010 his cookbook Pure Nature appeared in the Diners Club Magazine, where readers voted him as chef with the most innovative cooking. In 2012, industry magazine Rollingpin named it in the Leaders of the Year Awards, for cooking of the year.
What was your most moving culinary experience?
A wonderful meal at Louis XV in Monaco, an experience I would hate to have missed, as well as an excellent tajine which I was invited to partake of by a Moroccan family in Fez.
The most amusing kitchen incident you ever witnessed?
Difficult to say, we normally have a good atmosphere and lots of fun in the kitchen.
Your best piece of advice for amateur chefs?
Never take shortcuts with products – good quality is the foundation for a great meal.
- The Gault Millau Chef of the Year, 2009
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