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Chef Gert De Mangeleer Biography (Belgium)

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Discover the culinary journey of renowned Belgian chef, Gert De Mangeleer. From his humble beginnings to becoming a culinary icon, explore his innovative techniques and passion for gastronomy. Delve into his Michelin-starred restaurants, his influence on Belgian cuisine, and the secrets behind his delectable creations. Uncover the fascinating story of Chef Gert De Mangeleer, a true master of the culinary arts.

Gert De Mangeleer is a Belgian chef who has established himself as one of the most respected culinary minds of his generation. He is known for his innovative, creative, and technically precise approach to cooking, as well as his dedication to sourcing the finest local ingredients.

Early Life and Career

Gert De Mangeleer was born on December 12, 1977, in Roeselare, a small city in the Flemish province of West Flanders, Belgium. From a young age, he showed a strong interest in food and cooking, and spent much of his free time experimenting in the kitchen.

After completing his secondary education, De Mangeleer enrolled in the culinary arts program at the Ter Groene Poorte culinary school in Bruges, Belgium. While studying at Ter Groene Poorte, he had the opportunity to work in some of the finest restaurants in Belgium, including the three-Michelin-starred Hof van Cleve in Kruishoutem, under the tutelage of chef Peter Goossens.

In 2003, at the age of 25, De Mangeleer opened his first restaurant, called Oud Sluis, in the Dutch town of Sluis, just across the border from Belgium. From the beginning, he set out to create a dining experience that was unique, innovative, and uncompromising in its commitment to quality.

Oud Sluis

At Oud Sluis, De Mangeleer quickly gained a reputation for his technically precise and inventive cuisine. His dishes were characterized by their intricate preparations, bold flavors, and unexpected combinations of ingredients.

One of his most famous creations was a dish called “Oyster Leaf,” which featured a thin sheet of oyster-flavored gelatin topped with a single oyster, served on a bed of green leaves that tasted like oysters. This dish was a perfect example of De Mangeleer’s approach to cooking, which emphasized the use of local and seasonal ingredients, as well as a deep respect for tradition and technique.

Under De Mangeleer’s leadership, Oud Sluis quickly became one of the most acclaimed restaurants in Belgium, earning three Michelin stars in 2008, just five years after its opening. De Mangeleer’s dedication to quality and innovation had put him on the map as one of the most exciting chefs of his generation.

Hertog Jan

In 2014, after more than a decade at Oud Sluis, De Mangeleer decided it was time for a change. Together with his business partner, Joachim Boudens, he opened a new restaurant in Bruges called Hertog Jan, named after a nearby historic castle.

Hertog Jan was a departure from Oud Sluis in many ways, but it retained the same commitment to quality and innovation that had defined De Mangeleer’s earlier restaurant. The cuisine at Hertog Jan was more modern and creative than that of Oud Sluis, featuring dishes like “Lobster, Seaweed, and Soy” and “Beetroot, Herring, and Mustard.”

As with Oud Sluis, Hertog Jan quickly earned critical acclaim, receiving three Michelin stars in 2016, just two years after its opening. De Mangeleer’s skill as a chef and his commitment to sourcing the finest local ingredients had once again paid off in a big way.

 

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