Tim Mälzer: Big mouth led to success

Tim Mälzer
Big mouth led to success

Tim Mälzer is celebrating his milestone birthday with a virtual cooking evening.

© imago images / Stephan Wallocha

Tim Mälzer turns 50. In the corona pandemic, he has become the mouthpiece of restaurateurs. He always found clear words.

Tim Mälzer, who will celebrate his 50th birthday on January 22nd, is one of Germany's most popular TV chefs. The Hamburg restaurateur has developed from a trained chef to a TV star, book author and role model in the restaurant scene. His quick-witted mouth but also his creativity helped him.

There is no such thing as "does not taste good" for maltsters

Born in Elmshorn in 1971, the maltster completed his training as a cook, gained experience abroad and opened his first own restaurant in Hamburg in 2002. The title of his first TV cooking show fits his directness and his idea of ​​cooking: From December 2003 he presented "Doesn't taste good" on VOX. Following the example of his British colleague Jamie Oliver (45), he wanted to show people how they can conjure up delicious dishes on the home stove with simple products – with success. "Doesn't taste good, doesn't exist" was broadcast until August 2007 and was nominated twice for the German Television Award.

"I've lost my balance"

Mälzer became known to a larger audience through the evening ZDF cooking show "Cooking at Kerner", in which, from 2004 onwards, he regularly conjured up a menu with fellow cooks. Then came a setback in health: the cook suffered from burnout in 2006. "All the pressure has become too much for me. I have completely lost my balance. I no longer had a basis," he said in 2019 on the VOX program "The Substitute Teacher". In a very short time he was allowed to learn a lot about life and himself, "which makes my life today much nicer, easier and more relaxed," said Mälzer. Today he deals with failure proactively and with humor.

Since the end of 2007, Mälzer has often been a guest on the VOX program "Die Kocharena", in which celebrity chefs competed against amateur chefs. In 2009 Mälzer opened the "Bullerei" restaurant in Hamburg's Schanzenviertel and got his own program "Tim Mälzer kocht!" in the first, which ran until 2014. From 2013 to 2015 he was also a juror on the Sat.1 show "The Taste". He also wrote bestsellers such as "Born to Cook" and "Born to Cook 2". With "Fiete Gastro" the TV chef started his own podcast.

The "Kitchen Impossible" risk

In February 2016, Tim Mälzer's most successful TV format went on air. In "Kitchen Impossible" (new season from February 14th) he doesn’t share his best recipes with the audience or judge the skills of amateur cooks; instead, he has to prove his culinary talent. He engages in tough and heated duels with fellow cooks, in which the duelists send each other to different countries and set the task of cooking mostly local dishes. A jury on site decides on the success of the cooking result.

"My ambition is to put myself in the position of 'David against Goliath'. I'm trying to find opponents that I can't really beat," Mälzer said in an interview with spot on news in February 2020. It is extremely emotional and exhausting for him. "But every time I'm proud that I pulled through and didn't show myself naked. It's a bit of my 'Wetten, dass ..?' and as long as there is no Lanz, I'll keep doing it. " In 2017 and 2018 the format was awarded a German Television Prize. The guests have already seen great chefs such as Tim Raue (46), Roland Trettl (49), Maria Groß (41) and Steffen Henssler (48), who did not resent Mälzer's cheeky and confident manner and were only too happy to teach him better.

Role model in the corona crisis

Mälzer proves that he wears his heart on his tongue and finds clear words, not only at the stove, but also in public, which the Corona crisis in gastronomy once again showed. In May 2020 he said on the talk show by Markus Lanz (51) close to tears: "I'm not talking about my existence here, but about an entire industry and about employees for whom I have a responsibility." In an interview with "Bild" he then made specific demands such as a reduction in VAT for at least three years or an increase in short-time allowance for the duration of the crisis.

He organized a demonstration on Hamburg's Rathausmarkt to draw attention to the plight of the severely affected gastronomy and took part in fire letter campaigns by the landlords who, among other things, demanded immediate Corona aid from the federal government. Time and again, the chef also appeared on social networks with creative ideas and tried to compensate for the lost sales with various cooking boxes or, under the motto "Cooking for Heroes", provided nursing staff, clinic employees and homeless people with food.

Mälzer has not lost his sense of humor and recently explained "Bild am Sonntag" about a possible birthday party: "I'm speculating on the possibility of holding an open-air event when the weather is better. The Queen does that too." In order not to miss his birthday altogether, Mälzer has once again become creative: Friends and fans can buy a "Bad Ass Birthday Box" with ingredients for a menu including cocktails and celebrate virtually together with the birthday child.

"We cook, laugh, eat, drink and have a nice evening together," announces Mälzer dressed in a confetti suit on Instagram. On top of that, there is a maltster face mask in the package. The TV chef explains, modestly as ever: "Everyone who wants a Tim Mälzer at home gets a Tim Mälzer."