Chef and restaurateur Michel Roux Sr, who helped spark a culinary revolution in the UK, has died aged 78.
Roux, born in Charolles in France, opened renowned London restaurant Le Gavroche with his brother Albert after leaving France in 1967. Le Gavroche became the first three-Michelin-starred restaurant in Britain in 1982 and the restaurant is now run by Albert’s son Michel Roux Jr.
Michel and Albert went on to open the Waterside Inn in Bray, Berkshire, in 1972, where Michel’s son Alain is head chef. The restaurant also won three Michelin stars in 1985 and has held them ever since.
And in 1976 he was awarded the accolade of Le Meuilleur Ouvrier de France, recognising him as one of France’s finest craftsmen in patisserie.
He was also credited with inspiring and helping to train a generation of talented British chefs after founding the Roux Scholarship culinary competition with his brother in 1982.
In a statement on behalf of the family, Alain and daughters, Francine and Christine, said: “It is with deep sadness that the Roux family announces the passing of our beloved grandfather, father, brother and uncle, Michel Roux OBE.
“We are grateful to have shared our lives with this extraordinary man and we’re so proud of all he’s achieved. A humble genius, legendary chef, popular author and charismatic teacher, Michel leaves the world reeling in his wake. For many, he was a father figure inspiring all with his insatiable appetite for life and irresistible enthusiasm. But above all, we will miss his mischievous sense of fun, his huge, bottomless heart and generosity and kindness that knew no bounds. Michel’s star will shine forever lighting the way for a generation of chefs to follow.”
In a statement on Twitter, Michel Roux Jr added: “My uncle Michel is now busy in heaven making sure the soufflés are perfectly risen, the choux buns crisp and full, and champagne is generously poured for all.”