Walter Bickel

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Walter Bickel

Walter Bickel (born April 15, 1888 in Berlin ; † February 26, 1982 ibid) was a German cook , specialist journalist, and author and translator of specialist books on the catering trade .


Born in Berlin, Walter Bickel moved to London with his parents and three sisters in 1893 . There he attended an English school.

From 1914 onwards he had missions on the eastern and western fronts, for which he was awarded the " Iron Cross " 1st and 2nd class. From 1917 to 1921 he was a French prisoner of war , most recently in Avignon .

In 1925 he married Elli Burandt. The marriage from which the daughter Lilli came was divorced again in 1931. On August 15, 1941, his second marriage to Erika Strehlow took place, which lasted until his death. His son Roland comes from this marriage. One daughter died shortly after she was born.

Shortly before the end of the Second World War , he was drafted into the " Volkssturm " and was taken prisoner by the Soviets from April to June 1945.


In 1902, as the only German in a French brigade, he began an apprenticeship as a cook and pastry chef in the "Restaurant Frascati" in London. After successfully completing his apprenticeship, he worked at various positions in the “Midland Hotel”, Manchester ; "Trocadero Restaurant" and "Hotel Claridge", London; “Restaurant Turbigo” and “Restaurant Paillard”, Paris ; "States Restaurant", Liverpool and in the "Hotel Frankfurter Hof ", Frankfurt . After all, he worked as head chef at Prince Friedrich Leopold of Prussia in Klein Glienicke and at the Siemens directorate's casino in Berlin.

After returning from French captivity, he ran the casino of the Siemens management for a short time until he became head chef in two large mansions in Berlin. In 1927 he was awarded the master chef diploma from the Association of German Private Chefs .

Parallel to his work as a chef, he wrote articles for specialist magazines and from 1924 was co-editor and editor of the magazine Die Herrschaftliche Küche , which was published as a kitchen and table by Carl Hinstorff Verlag, Rostock, from 1932 until it was closed in 1934 . In addition, he has already started revising and writing various specialist books.

His further path led him, among other things, as head chef to the German Embassy in Paris , to the Romanian court of Prince Nicolai and to the World Exhibition in Paris in 1937 in the "Restaurant Horcher" in the German Pavilion. Then, relying on his international contacts, he was ready to take over the management of the Reichskochschule in Frankfurt am Main. This included responsibility for the culinary art museum, which he absolutely wanted to keep. However, he soon had to give it back. From 1938 to 1945 he was deputy kitchen director of the Aschinger AG / Kempinski Weinhaus GmbH joint venture - at that time the largest gastronomic group in Europe.

After his release from the second captivity, he worked for a short time in the kitchen of the American headquarters in Berlin. From 1946 to 1949 he was head chef for the British city commandant in Berlin.

From 1950 until his death he was only active as a specialist writer, author, editor, reviser and translator of specialist books. From 1950 to 1980 he was a permanent employee of the Allgemeine Hotel- und Gaststätten-Zeitung , which was published by Hugo Matthaes Verlag , Stuttgart. From 1951 to 1963, Bickel was also editor of the trade journal Die Küche - the official organ of the Association of German Chefs , Frankfurt.


Own books

  • Modern egg dishes , 1927. The 2nd revised edition appeared in 1932.
  • The World Cuisine Series , Volume 1: France , 1936
  • Decameron of Gourmets , 1936
  • German state kitchens , 1949
  • Feste, Fresser, Feinschmecker , 1951 (awarded as the best cover design)
  • The community kitchen , 1954 (1965 silver medal from the Association of German Community Catering)
  • Fine Cocktail Bites , 1957
  • The national kitchens of France , 1956
  • Mankind's greatest passion , 1959
  • Who's Who on the Menu (1967 under the title Who's Who on the Menu? )
  • Chatting from the Kitchen - Famous Dishes and Their Stories , 1967
  • The great international confectionery book , 1970
  • Game and poultry in international cuisine , 1974
  • with Pierre Mengelatte and Albin Abélanet: Buffets and receptions in international cuisine , 1976
  • Fish and crustaceans , 1978
  • The cook as a pastry chef
  • together with Felix Henseleit: Berlin à la carte , 1972

Translations and edits

  • Kochkunst-Bibliothek , 1949 revision of the series. Most of the titles originally come from other chefs of their time ( Matthaeus Carl Banzer , Johannes Berlin, Franz Joseph Beutel, Richard Boelke, Moritz Richter and Rudolf Seher).
  • Auguste Escoffier's culinary guide , 1949 revision and translation.
  • Richard Hering : Lexicon of the Kitchen , revision 1952 to 1976
  • Mary Hahn : Practical cookbook for home cooking , translation.
  • Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin : The real French cuisine ( La vraie cuisine française ), 1955
  • Henri-Paul Pellaprat : Cook well and modernly ( Les meilleures recettes de cuisine et pâtisserie ), translation and adaptation 1956
  • Henri Paul Pellaprat: The Modern French Art of Cooking ( L'art culinaire modern ), Bern 1959 (translation, editing and expansion together with other authors)
  • Henri Paul Pellaprat: The great Pellaprat. Modern French and International Culinary Art , 1966
  • Henri Paul Pellaprat: The fine kitchen ( Le nouveau guide culinaire ), 1969, translation and adaptation; appeared after several revisions in 1977 as Der kleine Pellaprat

Many of Bickel's books have been awarded bronze, silver and gold medals and the golden pen at the International Culinary Art Exhibition (IKA) in Frankfurt am Main, HOSPES in Bern, the Gastronomic Academy of Germany (GAD) and others.

Memberships and honors

  • Honorary member of the Berliner Köche 1841 eV association, the kitchen master guild of Berlin 1889 eV, the Association of German Chefs (VKD), the German Gastronomic Academy (GAD) and other domestic and foreign professional associations, such as Fraternelle des Cuisiniers du Comtat Venaissin .
  • 1961 VKD medal for culinary merits
  • 1963 gold medal of the VKD
  • 1972 Eugen Lacroix Medal
  • 1972 Carl-Friedrich-von-Rumohr-Ring of the Gastronomic Academy of Germany 1972.

In 1959 he and Eugen Lacroix gave ideas and was a founding member of GAD. As the official representative of GAD and VKD, he was the guest of honor on the occasion of the opening of the Auguste Escoffier Museum in Villeneuve-Loubet, France, on May 2, 1966.

Dishes created by him include poultry cream soup "Ilona" , venison chops "Eugen Lacroix" and Fogasch "Kârolyi" . Recipes named after him include saddle of lamb "Walter Bickel" with "Walter Bickel" sauce .

Web links