Karl Bittner Chef/Director Carrie Bittner Director
Karl, to his friends Gene*, has a wealth of experience spanning more than 28 years. Much of this was gained, at a high standard in the private sector working for individual operators.
After a start within the health food sector namely at Champney’s in Hertfordshire and Ragdale Hall Health Hydro in Leicestershire , Karl then moved in the opposite health direction becoming Pastry chef, winning awards for his desserts and patisserie in renowned former Cheshire AA** restaurant The White House in Prestbury.
Karl, a family man with wife Carrie and their 4 year old son Oskar, is a well travelled person. After being raised in Saudi Arabia by an anglicised, American father and further educated in his adopted Northwest, that he calls home, it was only a matter of time before foreign shores called again. This time working in Spain where he was Head Chef at a very successful restaurant near Valencia. After 5 years itchy feet came again and was time for a new chapter, this time with his new love, Carrie.
Karl and Carrie returned to the UK to set up a home and settled in to leafy Cheadle Hulme. Time to find a job for Karl so he joined Harvey Nichols in Manchester as part the kitchen management set up team. Carrie meanwhile became Assistant Manager at The White House and then onto the same operators next venture, Amba in Hale.
At Harvey Nichols Karl developed a large, yet focused and driven team, challenged by the high standards set and leading the way in constant innovation. Achieving and exceeding targets was owed to individual ownership, trust and integrity.
He then moved on as Executive Head Chef to open more successful large scale sites in Manchester including City Inn Hotel, which is now the Hilton Double Tree, Crowne Plaza Hotel, which is part of the Intercontinental Hotel Group and also chic French brand Aubaine which housed itself within Selfridges in Manchester city centre.
As this was happening Carrie decided to expand her wings, pun intended, and moved into the contract catering world at Manchester airport and is currently Manager of certain executive departure lounges for all 3 terminals.
Karl himself then moved on in the leisure sector working for contract catering giants Levy restaurants UK within the Compass brand, looking after art galleries and museums in Manchester, Edinburgh Zoo, York Railway Museum and many more as group Executive Chef.
Karl is very passionate about quality and delivering the best in all aspects of hospitality. Sharing his experiences and knowledge and encouraging his teams to do likewise, is key to theirs and his successes. So when sourcing the best quality ingredients Karl follows those exact same rules, so you will only receive the best quality produce. He promotes individuality and actively encourages his teams to build their foundations on provenance and sensible local sourcing.
He insists on constant communication with local suppliers and producers and sees this as paramount in supporting relations within the community and to ensure that UBAgene uses only the best and gives only the best.
“This is my dream,
One for us all to share.
I hope you like your bit,
I hope you dig my flare.
If this was your ‘Harry met Sally’
Then I’m glad you came
But if I fall short
Please..let me try again.”
“Why Gene?” well I wouldn’t be opening a restaurant if I was paid every time I was asked that.
We’ve all had them. A comedian friend, a varied background, a mispronounced name and hey presto.. Gene!! That’s as good as it gets really but it has stuck to me like Freddie to Flintoff or more like a sticky stick stuck n 1st place in the sticky stick competition in sticky town, sticky shire, stickyland. If your lovely Auntie called Jean was sat next to me and you called out Jean/Gene, I’d think you were talking to me. That is how used to it I am now, so please be my guest and call me Gene as do my friends. I know its serious if I hear “Karl!”