The most-decorated chef in the world has tragically passed away
Having already lost celebrity foodie and Parts Unknown host Anthony Bourdain earlier this year, the food world is reeling again. Joël Robuchon, who was named the Chef of the Century back in 1989 and is the most decorated chef in the business with 32 Michelin stars in 13 countries around the world, has died aged 73.
Le Figaro reports that after a long battle with cancer, the Frenchman Robuchon died in Geneva Switzerland earlier today. He had been treated for a pancreatic tumour for over a year, and it appears that this revolutionary chef has sadly lost his life.
Although he is a French culinary icon, Robuchon's death has been keenly felt across the Atlantic as well, with the chef being the pioneer behind the evolution of the fine dining experience, or "cuisine moderne". Well known for his mashed potato dishes, he had Michelin-starred restaurants in all corners of the globe, in cities such as Tokyo, Bangkok, Shanghai, Monaco and Las Vegas.
Starting off his career in his native Paris, Robuchon opened his first restaurant, Jamin, in 1981. The restaurant earned three Michelin stars in its first three years of operation, and riding off that success, Robuchon opened the first restaurant bearing his name, Joël Robuchon restaurant, in 1994. He'd then move his brand overseas, with 11 L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon restaurants in three continents.
World-renowned for his playful style and culinary innovation, Robuchon would often only stick to a handful of ingredients, making simple but delicious meals that tickled many a tastebud over the decades.
"The older I get, the more I realise the truth is: the simpler the food, the more exceptional it can be," Robuchon said to Business Insider back in 2014, adding: "I never try to marry more than three flavours in one dish. I like walking into a kitchen and knowing that the dishes are identifiable and the ingredients within them easy to detect."
Robuchon's style has influenced many of the leading chefs around today - most notably British chef and food personality Gordon Ramsay. Ramsay first made his name working under Robuchon at Jamin, and having learned of his death, Ramsay led the tributes for Joël Robuchon, referring to his mentor as "The Godfather of Michelin".
Alongside that, US television chef Andrew Zimmern called Robuchon an "amazing man" and declared today to be a "very sad day" for the industry, while former collaborators, massive food institutions and more all paid tribute to Robuchon, as the food world lost yet another icon, after Anthony Bourdain and food critic Jonathon Gold.
Having won more personal accolades at the highest level than any other chef and having influenced countless other chefs at the top of the profession, Joël Robuchon's career helped to shape the world of food as we see it today, and is survived by his children, Sophie Robuchon and Louis Robuchon Abe. He will be greatly missed.