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BIOGRAPHY

Hans completed his rigorous apprenticeship and three years of schooling in the Black Forest, where he learned the fine points of combining Classical French and Nouvelle Cuisine with elegant presentation.He perfected these techniques while cooking and traveling in Germany, France and Switzerland. Hans came to the United States after being recruited by Jovan Tryboyevic of the legendary Le Perroquet Restaurant in Chicago. At the age of twenty-two, Hans was one of the youngest talents to command a fine dining kitchen in the nation.

He moved to Los Angeles in 1984 to open his own restaurant, Röckenwagner, which gains notoriety year after year as one of the top restaurants in Southern California. The Los Angeles Times, Gourmet Magazine, the Zagat Survey and the TV Food Network consistently praise Hans' intelligent cooking and his ability to seamlessly meld classic with new, while integrating innovative, whimsical presentation. So much so, Röckenwagner was named one of the top ten restaurants in Los Angeles by Gourmet Magazine (October, 2000).

In addition to being an accomplished chef and cookbook author, Hans is a skillful carpenter. His handmade furniture graces his restaurants and home, and has been featured in House Beautiful Magazine, American Homestyle and Gardening Magazine, the Discovery Channel and House and Garden TV. He resides in Venice, California with his wife and business partner, Patti, and his three children, Gina, Roxanne, and Hansi.


His Restaurants:

Röckenwagner (1985) Venice, California:
The original, 40-seat restaurant drew critical acclaim for Hans' "creativity and caring" Cal-French cooking that made food cognoscenti scream, "it is touched by genius!" (Zagat, 1992)

Röckenwagner (1991) Santa Monica, California:
Original location is sold and larger restaurant is opened on Main Street in the Frank Gehry-designed Edgemar Complex. Röckenwagner continues to draw accolades for its contemporary cuisine, timeless setting and professional service. Dinner is served nightly, and brunch on weekends.

RÖCK (1999) Marina del Rey, California: RÖCK Bistro and Bar is opened as a casual alternative to Röckenwagner. Its colorful design was featured in a New York Times article about design trends. In 2000, RÖCK received top ten honors from both The New Times and LA Weekly Newspapers.

Career Highlights:

  • Named "Rising Chef of America" by prestigious James Beard House (Sept. 1992)
  • Recipient of Golden Dish Award by G.Q. Magazine for his Maine Lobster on Baked Sweet Potato with Truffle Butter (Dec. 1993)
  • 1994 recipient of Robert Mondavi Award for Culinary Excellence
  • Los Angeles Magazine lists Hans as one of the "300 Reasons Not To Pack Up and Leave Los Angeles (Apr. 1994)
  • Hans is invited to be featured in PBS Series Great Chefs-Great Cities (1996)
  • Hans is requested by The International Museum of the 20th Century Arts to create special cake for the 50th anniversary of UNICEF/UNESCO "Celebrating Children" birthday party in Geneva, Switzerland (Oct. 1996)
  • Release of the highly anticipated Röckenwagner Cookbook (Spring 1997)
  • Hans' menu featured in first and business classes on Lufthansa; Hans consults for LSG SkyChefs (1997-1998)
  • RÖCK is listed one of the hottest new restaurants on AOL's Digital City (Aug. 1999)
  • Hans appears on TV Food Network's "Cooking Live with Sara Moulton," doing a special segment on Germany's famous Oktoberfest (Oct. 1999)
  • Saveur Magazine features Hans' White Asparagus Festival (Apr. 2000)
  • Gourmet Magazine's Best Restaurants in America 2000 issue lists Röckenwagner among the Top Ten Restaurants in Los Angeles.
  • LA's New Times and LA Weekly Newspapers name RÖCK's pizza the best in L.A. and RÖCK's coconut-clam soup best dish of 2000, respectively (Dec. 2000 / Jan. 2001)
  • Hans is asked to cook once again at the James Beard House (May 2001)
  • Gaggenau selects Hans as the official spokesperson for their professional line of home appliances (October 2001)

 

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