Born in 1963, Tong Chee Hwee started his career at the age of 18 at the Happy Valley Chinese restaurant in Singapore before moving to their Kuala Lumpur restaurant. Having returned to Singapore he was discovered by Alan Yau, overseeing the kitchens at the highly regarded Chinese restaurant at the Ritz Carlton hotel. Tong was persuaded to move to London in 2001 to become head chef at the soon to be opened Hakkasan, which won a Michelin star soon after its launch – an accolade which it holds today. In March 2005, Tong was given another extraordinary accolade at London’s foremost restaurant ceremony, the Tio Pepe ITV Restaurant Awards when he was awarded the “London Chef of the Year”, the only Chinese chef to have won such an award. Hakkasan now has branches all over the world. Hakkasan, Doha opened in January 2013.
Chef Tong is best known for his talent for presenting complex flavoured Cantonese dishes with a modern flair and bringing a freshness and vitality to Chinese food. With a menu philosophy that tells the story of China through reviving and modernising old recipes, chef Tong and his team use Hakkasan’s state-of-the-art kitchen as a facility to develop unique dishes and push the boundaries of culinary innovation. Chef Tong’s team combine authentic wok and barbecue cooking methods alongside modern sous vide techniques, using local, organic produce and coastal seafood from the British Isles, where possible.
- One Michelin star
- London Chef of the Year, Tio Pepe ITV Restaurant Awards