Hong-Kong-born Chef, Vicky Chen, may create dishes with an air of playfulness and fun, but behind these beautiful plates lies a culinary master with the strongest of work ethics. Vicky wakes up every morning with his mind abuzz with ideas on how to improve his craft, making make diners happier and more excited than ever before. Central to this, however, is respecting each ingredient and honoring it on the plate. While skill, experience and creativity are of significant and equal importance to Vicky, it is his attitude that ultimately determines his altitude.
After working with some of the world’s best chefs, including Jason Bangerter of Auberge du Pommier, Anthony Walsh of Canoe in Toronto, and Daniel Boulud of Michelin-starred Restaurant Daniel in New York, Cheng was appointed as the executive chef of Liberty Private Works, where he gained invaluable exposure in the local dining scene.
After spending these many years working and refining his culinary techniques at various kitchens around the globe, Vicky returned back to his birthplace, Hong Kong, in 2011. Here, he used his experience in the kitchens overseas to create his own cooking style, which blends Chinese and French Cuisine in an elegant and refined manner.
At VEA, Vicky showcases this Chinese x French cooking style in thoughtfully curated, continuously changing tasting menus. As a chef who is never afraid to take risks and experiment with flavors and textures, tasting menus are ideal for Cheng, as they allow a ceaseless exploration of fresh, seasonal ingredients both locally produced and globally sourced.
“Food is a universal language. Through the language of “Chinese x French” here at VEA, I want to share with you, not only cooking techniques I’ve learned, but also a reflection of the culture I grew up in, as this is a heritage that I am most proud of.”
“From the beginning of your menu, until the very last bite, we will present you a series of courses that will all have a connection to Hong Kong. This could mean an indigenous Chinese ingredient that has yet to meet western cooking techniques, locally sourced produce, or simply a distinct childhood memory. The Chinese character in my name, “Wing” – meaning “always” drives me to follow my dreams and purpose.”
Using his childhood memories, his parents, and the vibrant culture of Hong Kong as inspiration for his cooking, Vicky pours his heart into the bi-weekly changing degustation menu at VEA. The only restaurant in Hong Kong to offer such a unique marriage of local and western flavors, VEA takes pride in pioneering the city’s first Chinese x French cuisine.
The menu at VEA’s strong focus on freshness of produce means that whilst the core of the menu remains the same, individual dishes are amended or changed altogether to accommodate the dynamic seasons.
Most renowned for his use of rare Chinese ingredients such as preserved apricot, local sugarcane, sea cucumber and flower crabs, Vicky aims to create a balanced harmony between his Chinese roots, French culinary training, and indeed, breathtaking plating aesthetics with attention to the smallest details.
In the dining room on the 30/F, your senses, vision and your palate will be stimulated and pleasured by the young, modern French cuisine created by Chef Vicky Cheng, in an open kitchen equipped with the latest state of the art kitchen equipment.
Describe your culinary philosophy:
Chinese, French, genuine, personable
What is your greatest inspiration?
My family, my team. Pushes me to be the best that I can be, to be better than yesterday. It’s very important for me to make my family proud.
What FOUR things would you take to a desert island?
Water, onion, garlic, ginger.
If you could take a plane ride to any restaurant in the world, just for one meal, where would you go?
Etxebarri, San Sebastián.
- 1 Michelin Star at VEA | The Michelin Guide Hong Kong & Macau 2017, 2018 & 2019
- Chef of the Year 2019 | HK Tatler Dining
- Top 20 Restaurant 2018 & 2019 | HK Tatler Dining
- Dianping Black Pearl Restaurant Guide 2019
- Best Restaurant 2017 | The Foodie Forks
- Best New Restaurant 2016 | The Foodie Forks
- Chef of the Year 2014 | The Foodie Forks
- #6 Asian Restaurant to watch 2017 | The Diners Club World’s 50 Best Restaurants Academy
- Best Restaurant 2017 | Ctrip
- HK Tatler Generation T50 List 2017
- Top 10 Wine Pairing Restaurants 2016 & 2018 | Wine Luxe
- Wine by the Glass Restaurant Awards 2018 | Wine Luxe
- CNN Hong Kong’s Best New Restaurants 2016 | Wine Luxe
- Best New Restaurants 2016 | South China Morning Post
- Top 100 tables 2018 | South China Morning Post
29 – 30/F, The Wellington
198 Wellington Street