Beijing F&B Entrepreneurs: Stories of Foreign Food and Wine Success

Everyone’s hungry and thirsty, but people are picky about what they consume. Over the last ten years, tastes have changed in China. Foreign restaurants and imported wine wholesalers that used to cater to expats are now having success with all demographics. This event, hosted by China Entrepreneurs (CE), the AmCham China SME Committee, AustCham Beijing, and the Swiss Chamber of Commerce, will showcase some of those success stories of foreign F&B providers in Beijing and how they have achieved success as well as the challenges they still face in growing a sustainable brand. Not only is the market extremely competitive, but high real estate prices also impact profitability. ​Pizza will be served by Gung Ho Pizza and CHEERS Wines will be providing wine.

Date: Tuesday 24th November

Time: 6:30PM – 9:00PM

Price: 100RMB (Members) 200RMB (Non-members)

Venue: AmCham China Conference Center/ 中国美国商会

Address: The Office Park, Tower AB, 6th Floor, No. 10 Jintongxi Road,Chaoyang District, Beijing/ 北京市金桐西路10号 远洋光华国际 AB座6层



Robert Cunningham:

Executive Chef at FEAST at East Hotel

Chef Robert Cunningham grew up on a small farm in the country side of Australia.  The farm raised pig, sheep, cattle, chickens, ducks, and geese.  There were fresh produce all around him so it was no wonder that his interest in culinary arts was first sparked while living on the farm.

 In their orchard his family grew an abundance of fresh fruits and as a child growing up he watched his mother make fresh jams in their kitchen.  Surrounded by food lovers in his family, Chef Rob learnt to bake cakes and breads from his mother and aunts.  “The smell of freshly baked pies and cakes are still forever cherished in my mind.  Food was a real life affair for me and my family.” says Chef Rob.

He officially began his culinary career at the age of 16 and during the past 27 years he has been blessed to have been able to work all around the world.  In Australia he worked in the top restaurants in both Sydney and Melbourne which opened doors for him to work in London and Europe.

Chef Rob first got a taste of Asia when he worked in Hakuba Japan.  This position eventually led him to his new home here in Beijing.  “I love China.  The food is fantastic and the fact that we are so close to its origins is phenomenal.  You can get beautiful stone fruits from the mountains in Beijing, fabulous truffles and mushrooms from Yunnan, and fresh seafood from Dalian and Tsingtao.  There are specialties from every region in China and I love that I can use them to create my dishes.”says Chef Rob.

Having lived in Beijing for five years Chef Rob looks forward to helping East grow.  EAST, Beijing is different from other hotels.  The restaurants are fun and exciting. Working at a hotel that encourages creativity and individuality gives the Chef the tools to create his masterpieces.


Claudia Masüger:

CEO & Founder of CHEERS Wines

Claudia Masüger worked several years for SwissRe, founded a charity organization and build up computer schools for a couple of year. She has arrived in China in 2008 with two suitcases of wine samples. In the meantime she and her awesome team build up two successful wine businesses: A B2B wine wholesaler as well as a wine retail chain store called CHEERS Wines. CHEERS currently has over 30 stores all over China and they grow fast with an outstanding Franchise Concept with the biggest aim, to develop Entrepreneurs. CHEERS wines makes wine drinking fun and its customers smile.


Alex Molina:

General Manager at Mosto | MODO Urban Deli | MOKA Bros Read Bio

Alex Molina is a restaurant industry veteran. Over the past twenty years he has managed restaurants and bars in his hometown of Bogota, as well as Miami & New York. He came to China in 2005 where he was consulting on the opening of a fine dining restaurant. Alex is the creative visionary of the team and together with partner Chef Daniel Urdaneta, they head-up Mosto Restaurant Group, the group behind Mosto, MODO Urban Deli and MOKA Bros. Alex Molina recently opened his sixth restaurant in China

Gung Ho Pizza CFO Lucy Hu with John Key 2014

Lucy Hu

CFO and Co-Founder of Gung Ho Pizza

Lucy Hu is the CFO and Co-Founder of Gung Ho! Pizza together with New Zealanders Jade Gray and John O’Loghlen. Lucy is a qualified accountant and oversees all Gung Ho! Pizzas operations in Beijing as well as being an investor and executive of Blue Panda Group, a Haidian-based F&B group with operations in Wudaokou and Hebei. Originally from Tieling in Liaoning Province, Lucy’s early career involved assisting an international cattle farming JV with investors from the U.S. (Hambrecht & Quist), Singapore (Temasek) and New Zealand (Te Mania Angus) working with Liaoning Government in 1999 to set up the first cattle feedlot for McDonald’s supplier/partner OSI in China. Following that project she moved to Beijing and has been based in Wudaokou and now in Lido, Chaoyang to be closer to the Gung Ho! Pizza operations. Lucy has hosted three New Zealand Prime Ministers in China as well as the Chairman and Board of Fonterra – a Gung Ho! Pizza commercial partner – and is recently a fan of the World Champion All Blacks rugby team.

 mike wester

Michael Wester:

General Manager, The Beijinger Magazine

Michael Wester is the founder and CEO of True Run Media, the publisher of The Beijinger magazine since its founding in 2001. Over the ensuing 15 years he has been a front-row observer of the evolution of the city’s vibrant food and beverage scene. He also spent many years “behind the counter” in the restaurant business, doing everything from busing tables to driving delivery trucks to managing a branch of a popular restaurant chain in the resort community of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Finally, his ever expanding waistline proves that he’s a frequent diner at Beijing’s innumerable fine restaurants.


Peter Troesch:
President at Peach International

Peter Troesch is Swiss, has been living and working in China for 13 years and has been working in hospitality management for 15 years. He has been president of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce in Beijing for 8 years and has set up RuiTao Academy and Downstairs Neighbours cafe and restaurant in 2013. In April 2015, Peter Troesch has launched the SwissTaste restaurant bar deli concept in Central Park in Beijing. Since then, SwissTaste Academy (cooking school and private event space), delivery and catering services have been successfully launched. SwissTaste has been awarded “Best Newcomer” by Dining City – Restaurant Week in September 2015 – just 5 months after its global launch.

Peter Troesch has been the coveted “Individual Outstanding Achievements” award for his contribution to the Sino-Swiss economic development during his 13 years stay in China at the Sino-Swiss Business Awards in September 2015 by SwissCham China and the Embassy of Switzerland.

This event is held in conjunction with:

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