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Legendary French Chef Michel Roux Has Died at 79

The chef behind the Waterside Inn in Bray and Le Gavroche in London died last night in Berkshire

Chef Michel Roux, who has died at 79
The legendary, hugely influential chef Michel Roux leaves behind a genuine legacy
Warton Li/South China Morning Post via Getty Images

Michel Roux Senior, the most influential French chef and restaurateur to have cooked in Britain, has died at the age of 79. He passed away last night at his home in Bray, Berkshire, from what the Caterer reports was “a long battle with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.”

Some of the most distinguished and influential chefs to have defined a generation in London trained under Roux: Gordon Ramsay, Marco Pierre White, and Pierre Koffmann, chefs whose proteges went onto influence a generation of their own.

Roux sat at the top of one of the world’s most famous culinary dynasties: his partner and brother Albert Roux whose son Michel Roux Junior, synonymous with MasterChef and Le Gavroche, is perhaps the best known of all the Roux family in the U.K. Emily Roux, Michel junior’s daughter opened Caractère in Notting Hill in 2018.

On Instagram, the Roux Scholarship, a chef programme founded by Roux announced the death with the following message:

“We are deeply saddened to have lost our founding father, 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. #michelroux”

Correction: this article originally stated that Emily Roux was Michel Roux’s granddaughter. He was in fact her great uncle.

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