Up Close with Chef Lee Man Sing, Executive Chef, Mott 32 Hong Kong

Chef Lee Man-Sing

CONTENT: Andrew Kho
IMAGE: Mott 32 Hong Kong

Mott 32, a culinary brand under the award-winning Maximal Concepts offering innovative Asian cooking techniques was named after 32 Mott Street in New York, since their inception the brand has successfully gone globally from Hong Kong in 2014 and now in cities including Singapore, Thailand, Seoul, Las Vegas, Vancouver, Dubai and soon to open in Toronto.

We interviewed Chef Lee Man Sing, Executive Chef of Mott 32 Hong Kong, with over 40 years of experience in the F&B industry and graduating with distinction from the Chinese Culinary Institute, he shares with us his passion for cooking which lead him to Mott 32 as well as his experiences, inspiration and struggles in his culinary journey.

Mott 32 HK

At a young age, during his teenage years, Chef Lee knew he wanted to be a Chef, stemmed from his early passion for cooking and nurtured through preparing meals for his family.

Learning his culinary skills at home. Chef Lee’s culinary journey includes graduating with distinction from the Chinese Culinary Institute, participating in the exclusive Master Chef Course, and gaining recognition for his talents at esteemed establishments like The Hong Kong Jockey Club’s Fortune Room and Hoi Yat Heen at Harbour Grand Kowloon.

His tenure as Head Chef at Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong saw him contributing to the creation of a Michelin-starred Cantonese menu. In 2015, Chef Lee left Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong and officially joined Mott 32 Hong Kong.

Luxe Society Asia: Was it hard to adapt from your previous work place to your current work place?

Chef Lee: Transitioning to Mott 32 brought improvements in my work environment, including better equipment and more holidays compared to my previous previous workplace.

Luxe Society Asia: What are some of your most memorable experiences in your culinary career?

Chef Lee: I should say is the challenge faced during the opening of Mott 32’s Vancouver branch and the subsequent adjustments in sourcing ingredients and training the operations team.

Luxe Society Asia: What are some of the most important lessons that you’ve learnt in the Kitchen?

Chef Lee: It will always be the importance of managing the team and the challenges of being able to work together across different venues worldwide.

Luxe Society Asia: What are the challenges you’ve encountered along your culinary career?

Chef Lee: It would be the rapid opening of nine food court concepts in Macau within a short period and having to deal with incomplete facilities, HR issues, and technical challenges.

Luxe Society Asia: Are Awards important to you? What inspires you to work harder?

Chef Lee: Awards serve as significant milestones in my career, bringing recognition and broader visibility to my work.

Luxe Society Asia: Why do you think Hong Kong diners enjoy Mott 32?

Chef Lee: Hong Kong diners appreciate Mott 32 for its fusion of traditional flavours with modern culinary techniques, preserving the essence of Chinese cuisine while innovating.

Luxe Society Asia: Why do you think International tourists need to try when visiting Mott 32?

Chef Lee: International tourists visiting Mott 32 can experience a diverse range of Chinese cuisine, from Cantonese dim sum, to Peking duck to Sichuan-style dishes, showcasing traditional flavours in a contemporary setting.

Luxe Society Asia: What are Mott 32’s plans 5 to 10 years from now?

Chef Lee: Mott 32 aims to expand globally, representing Hong Kong’s culinary excellence on the international stage.

SS Menu

Spring Summer Menu

Luxe Society Asia: What was your inspiration in creating the Spring/Summer menu? 

Chef Lee: my inspiration is from seasonal ingredients to create innovative dishes, collaborating with my culinary team to develop the menu.

Luxe Society Asia: Our favourite dish in your Spring/Summer menu is the Bamboo Charcoal French Lamb Rack, Black Pepper, would you be able to share with us why you decided to include Lamb in the menu and the secret in achieving a tender and flavourful meat to it?

Chef Lee: The inclusion of lamb in the S/S menu reflects its versatility across different cultures and occasions. The addition of a charcoal crust enhances its flavour and texture. The secret to achieving tender lamb with a subtle flavour lies in employing meticulous cooking techniques and seasoning to harmonize with the meat’s natural taste, complemented by our signature black pepper crusts.

Luxe Society Asia: How creative / playful are you when it comes to coming up with new dishes and seasonal menus?

Chef Lee: I will always create new dishes and seasonal menus with creativity and innovation, incorporating international flavours while respecting traditional Chinese cooking techniques honed over my four decades in the industry.

Mott 32 Hong Kong’s Limited time spring/summer menu is available from now till September 2024

Mott 32 Hong Kong is located at Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Rd Central, Central, Hong Kong | Website