Joël Robuchon dies aged 73

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 6th August 2018

Joël Robuchon passed away on August 6 2018, after a long battle with cancer according to Le Figaro.

His restaurants held 32 Michelin stars across 13 countries making him the most Michelin-decorated chef in history. The culinary icon was born in Poitiers, France in 1945 as one of four children. He worked as a cook in the Mauléon-sur-Sèvre seminary in the Deux-Sèvres.

In 1960, at the age of 15, he became an apprentice chef at the Relais of Poitiers hotel, starting off as a pastry chef. In 1966, Joël became the official chef of Le Tour de France namely "Compagnon du Tour de France", enabling him to travel throughout the country, learning a variety of diverse regional techniques. Aged 28 he was appointed as head chef at the hotel Concorde-Lafayette. Three years later he won the Meilleur Ouvrier de France for his craftsmanship in Culinary Arts.

In 1981, he opened his own restaurant in Paris called Jamin. The restaurant won three Michelin stars in three consecutive years, and was frequently called the greatest in the world until he abruptly relocated to Joel Robuchon in 1994.

In 1989, he was awarded "Chef of the Century" by Gault Millau.

Seeing many of his peers die of stress and heart attacks, he retired in 1995 at the age of 50. He subsequently staged a comeback, opening several restaurants bearing his name around the world.

Tributes have flooded social media: 

He was the most influential French chef of the post-nouvelle cuisine era. Since the mid-1980s, he has been called the primus inter pares of Paris' three star chefs for his work both at Jamin and at his eponymous restaurant.

He was known for the relentless perfectionism of his cuisine; he said there is no such thing as the perfect meal – one can always do better. He was instrumental in leading French cuisine away from the excesses and excessive reductionism of nouvelle cuisine.

Drawing his inspiration firstly from the simplicity of cuisine, he led the way in creating a more delicate style respectful of natural food ingredients.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 6th August 2018

Joël Robuchon dies aged 73