FiftyThree's Michael Han: Don't call me a celebrity chef

FiftyThree's Michael Han: Don't call me a celebrity chef

Forget fancy molecular gastronomy, just give him wanton mee. Meet the wunderkind behind Singapore's most buzzed about restaurant
Chef Michael Han
One famously cranky critic called Michael the best local chef cooking European food to emerge in the past two decades.

What a difference a year makes. Barely 12 months ago, Michael Han was just another chef trying to open his restaurant in a food-obsessed tiny island. Granted, everyone knew his back story: Lawyer by training, stints at the hallowed temples of gastronomy -- UK chef Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck among them -- and he was backed by fine dining group Les Amis. The hype was tremendous; the expectations even greater.

Then FiftyThree opened its doors in January 2009. The food spoke for itself, and success came swift and furious. Did skeptics who scoffed eat their words right after eating at FiftyThree? In the immortal words of Sarah Palin, "Ya betcha."

CNNGo: In just less than a year, FiftyThree was lauded by critics, made an entry among the Top 20 in Asia's Miele Guide and has been featured in the New York Times. How do you feel about that?

Michael Han: It's all been very unexpected and extremely humbling. I still believe that we have a long way to go before what we have achieved can be lauded as a success. We have also been very fortunate that we have received such a good response from our guests and the media.

getting there

53 Armenian Street, Singapore
+65 6334 5535
Lunch: Tuesday-Saturday, 12-2pm
Dinner: Monday-Saturday, 7-9:30pm