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Can't be bothered to cook? Book a chef with this app

Enjoy restaurant-quality food at home with Hao Chushi (好厨师)

Can’t be bothered to leave the house and face a busy restaurant? Why go out and suffer the indignity of waiting for a table when you can have a chef come to your home and serve you dinner for around the same price?

Just a few taps on the Hao Chushi (好厨师) app has everything you need (if you read Chinese).

app home screen

First, you select a cuisine. They’re all Chinese so far, but there’s a good range including Shanghainese, Dongbei, Shandong, Sichuan and Cantonese.

Then pick how many dishes you want: four plus a soup for 79RMB, six plus a soup for only 99RMB.

Then it gets a bit Tinder. You scroll through all the different chefs and pick the one for you (there are ratings to help you pick).

You can then choose specific dishes or ask for your chef’s recommendations. There’s one last killer feature: choose whether or not your chef does the shopping.

He brings the supermarket receipt along with him.

Put in your details such as address and time and hit go – it’s as easy as that. Well, kind of. After we booked we received a phone call saying that choosing to eat at 8pm was too late as the chef might find it ‘inconvenient’ to get home.


A Tinder-esque chef profile

Then another call came to say the chef wasn’t available.

It seems the app might be offering more functionality than the service can deliver, but we wanted a chef in our kitchen, so we went with it.

App 2

At this point it really helps if you speak Chinese because the chef calls to discuss the menu. We got a real talker, but very professional. This was a useful step as we had to explain that the kitchen wasn’t fully geared up for Chinese cooking, so he agreed to bring all the condiments and spices, too.

On the day, he arrived already wearing his chef’s hat, carrying a branded suitcase and all our shopping, including an entire chicken and a giant fish. He even brought packs of wet wipes for the table. He cooked hard for two and a half hours and didn’t mind a more or less constant audience of guests asking ‘what’s that?’.

There was just one oversight: he doesn’t cook rice. Imagine.

Get that going yourself or just eat the cooked dishes served banquet style – they’re bigger than restaurant portions so you should have more than enough. The table was covered in food, with plenty of garnishes.

Everything was cooked well – the fish was particularly good – though a couple were a little bland, such as the smoked tofu. This was probably our fault for asking that not every dish be spicy. Next time, we’ll just roll with it.

Our advice is to be particular and pick every dish yourself rather than taking recommendations. While we ate, our chef even began cleaning the kitchen, which kind of sealed the deal for us. Our guests enjoyed the experience, too, and said they’d be tapping up their own chefs soon.

  • 4 out of 5 stars