The Kitchens of the Great Masters:
The kitchen of Karlheinz Hauser, Süllberg in Hamburg
On the historic Süllberg hill in Hamburg, Karlheinz Hauser, a two-star Michelin chef with the latest modern equipment. "The ideal kitchen equipment is without a doubt not a question of honor, but of reason", says Karlheinz Hauser at our interview and is especially happy about his latest acquisition, the "intelligent" Combi-Steamer Salvis-CUCINA.
The history of the Süllberg hill can be traced back to the year 1060. At that time the first castle on the 75 meter hill was built. The castle which is still standing today was built between 1887 and 1903. It sits full of majesty on its hill – an architectural synthesis of the arts and center of Hamburg Blankenese. Even then Süllberg was one of the most popular places for excursions. Generations of Hamburgers celebrated glittering balls and festivities here. Over the past century, the estate was repeatedly changed and rebuilt. The last renovation was from 1999 to 2002 when Karlheinz Hauser began to work there as an entrepreneur and operator. This reconstruction was certainly the most complex transformation, because that beautiful piece of architecture of the Wilhelmine era was not only fitted with a high-quality interior, but also with all the technical refinements. The building complex includes a large ballroom with a gallery, the observation tower, the cross roof attic and the coach house with ten luxurious rooms and suites. In addition, several drawing rooms of different sizes and styles, two restaurants and two terraces - all under one roof.
Based on its well-founded concept, its particular attention to detail and passion for gastronomy, Karlheinz Hauser has managed to let the gem of Hamburg's history shine with a new splendor. "My vision was to reconcile tradition and history with contemporary and international lifestyle trends. Following the costly renovation, we have succeeded to shine on new light on the outstanding historical setting with chic accessories, "says Karlheinz Hauser. Since 2012, awarded with two Michelin stars, the gourmet restaurant "Seven Seas" is the core of the Süllberg ensemble. It offers an excellent, classic French influenced cuisine, accented with touches of the seven seas. With conceptual thinking, assertiveness and a sense of what the Hamburg gourmets love, he was able by means of a well-trained team to carry out an innovative restaurant concept and make Süllberg a popular meeting place for locals and guests from nearby as well as abroad. In suitable temperatures, both terraces are decorated for guests who enjoy the fine food and who wish to watch the large ships sailing on the Elbe.
The 47-year-old Karlheinz Hauser is an integral part of the German gourmet scene. He has developed his culinary skills after completing his training at the Hotel Lindenhof in the Black Forest in highly decorated houses such as the Kulm in St. Moritz and in Munich Königshof. Essentially however he was trained by Eckart Witzigmann. After his subsequent time with Gerd Käfer with whom he hosted catering and banquets around the world, he made his way to Berlin. As executive chef and culinary director at the Hotel Adlon, he organized large banquets for prominent national and international figures and hosted high-profile dinners at Schloss Bellevue. In spring 2002 Karlheinz Hauser followed the call to the capital of the Elbe on the Süllberg. From then on he became one of the top chefs of the Hanseatic city and based on classic French cuisine he creates light dishes and combines them with creative and modern elements. Whatever the effect he causes in the restaurant "Seven Seas", he has been revealed as a quality fanatic who neither rests nor roosts until he has enticed the tasty quintessence from all the ingredients. How about when he "cooked low temperature monkfish with tomato ginger stock and spherical olives", "Canadian lobster with light tomato-ginger stock Tom Berries powerade and baby spinach", "Duet of Welsh salt marsh lamb with lemon thyme sauce, baked green beans and polenta maize tart" or the "interpretation of Joselito pork tenderloin, cheek, Secret 18/63 and ham with polenta tarts, artichokes and peppers of Padrone". In the market restaurant "Deck 7" the guests can delight in "dual Holsteiner veal", "shrimp cocktail with yogurt sauce" and "Charantais melon in a papaya" or be served "pulled pork, delicately smoked pork shoulder, coleslaw and beans in flatbread ". The culinary pampering by Karlheinz Hauser can be experienced outside the Süllberg through its catering service of "Hauser Catering & Consulting Company". He gave advice about this for example to Donald Trump in the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, one the most exclusive private clubs in the United States for more than two years. Further reference projects are the Golden Pen, the Golden Camera in Berlin, the Tennis Masters at Rothenbaum or the Porsche LMP1 project, where he cooked worthy of a star, amongst others in Le Mans for the Porsche factory driver Mark Webber, Neel Jani, Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas. Especially for those catering projects Hauser built a mobile van with many multifunction appliances inside which makes his abandoned kitchen at home almost forgotten.
"My Combi-Steamer thinks along with me"
Of course kitchen technology in Süllberg cannot lag behind. The current most important kitchen appliances, the combi and the pressure steamers bear the logo of Franke-Salvis. "Since my times with Käfer, I worked with Franke Combi-Steamers and at the Adlon Berlin it was no different," says Karlheinz Hauser. In particular, since his catering appointment in Hamburg, Salvis equipment with touch-screen operation is indispensable for him. "Without the Combi-Steamer or the Pressure Steamer, catering in the modern kitchen would be as good as nothing," reports Hauser. It is not a question of honor, but of reason. For innovative chefs like him, the Swiss Salvis AG has practically equipped its new Combi-Steamer Salvis-CUCINA with five senses and converted it into a trainable assistant for chefs. Using highly advanced sensors, Salvis-CUCINA senses in particular the current conditions in the oven and the consistency of the food. It senses the size, the food load and the condition of the products and for example calculates independently the time for the desired browning. Even interruptions such as the interim opening of the door are to be taken into account. "With just two taps I can call up the most important processes, make individual variations and have a reliable control. The Salvis CUCINA leaves me free time for really innovative work," says the Süllberg chef. Another novelty is that he can also cook different dishes simultaneously. The system announces when he can take a certain meal out of the oven and Easy function ensures that the heat, air and moisture is always evenly distributed. With the reversing the fan the Salvis -CUCINA can also be an oven for freshly baked rolls, croissants, bread or snacks. The new device in Hauser's kitchen does not stop to think even when the work is done. The Eco-Autoclean (EAC) feature detects how dirty the oven is and determines from four different cleaning levels – with either solid or liquid detergents - the optimum level required to remove dirt and lime in each case. The optimal distribution of water and chemicals in the interior of the oven is obtained by using the built-in cleaning nozzle with a jet cycle.