The London Food World Reacts to the Death of Joël Robuchon – Eater London
French culinary icon, Joël Robuchon has died after a long illness with cancer. As well as being the most decorated chef in the history of the Michelin star index, he is credited with the evolution of fine dining globally — specifically taking nouvelle cuisine to “cuisine moderne.”
Though his imprint is felt across the world, and as keenly in America, as in his home nation of France, the chef — who opened his first and only restaurant in London in 2006 — has drawn plaudits from the culinary world, with chefs, restaurateurs, and food writers in the U.K. today paying tribute to the man and his legacy.
Gordon Ramsay was mentored by Robuchon at Jamin, his famed Paris restaurant largely believed to be the world’s best for the duration of its existence. Ramsay wrote in his biography, Humble Pie, that his nemesis Marco Pierre White was a “fucking pussycat” in comparison to Robuchon, whose ferocious attention to detail was a hallmark of both his cooking and, eventually, his line of eponymous L’Atelier restaurants in three continents.
This lunchtime, it was Ramsay who led the tributes, calling Robuchon the “God Father of Michelin.”
Bibendum’s Claude Bosi, another Frenchman, and a chef whose restaurant is housed in London’s former Michelin headquarters, thanked Robuchon for everything he had done for gastronomy.
Food writer and Eater London contributor Sejal Sukhadwala described Robuchon as the “father of fine dining.”
Noble Rot head chef Paul Weaver left a simple tribute.
Writer and The Observer restaurant critic Jay Rayner focussed on Robuchon’s now legendary pommes purées, as well as his character.
Just heard about the death of Joel Robuchon. The test of a great chef is the ability to change forever the simplest of things. Robuchon changed the way a certain type of restaurant made mashed potato, by putting less potato and more butter in it. He was also a very nice chap.
— Jay Rayner (@jayrayner1) August 6, 2018
Holder of three Michelin stars, and owner of Dame de Pic in London, Anne Sophie Pic was one of many to call Robuchon “a visionary.”