The Untold Truth Of Albert Roux

Britain's dynamic restaurant scene has lost one of its shining stars: Albert Roux, who passed away on Monday, Jan 4. He was the first chef in the UK to have picked up three Michelin stars for his work at Le Gavroche. Such was his impact on London's restaurant scene that Roux, along with his brother Michel, were named as the catalysts for the fine dining movement that eventually came to London as a result. 

Roux's death was announced on the restaurant's website, and while it said that the chef had not been feeling well for a while, it didn't reveal more details other than the fact that he passed away at age 85. According to The New York Times, his brother died last year.

The Roux brothers' restaurant, which was named after the young street urchin in Victor Hugo's book "Les Miserables," made waves because it was the only dining establishment that offered classic French cuisine during the 1960s. The New York Times also says it became the first restaurant in Britain to be honored with three Michelin stars (it started off with one, then picked up another, then another), and it was the first Michelin-rated restaurant to give diners the option of ordering a fixed-price lunch. Today Le Gavroche has two Michelin stars.

Albert Roux mentored some of Britain's finest haute cuisine chefs

Albert Roux was born in France, but moved to the UK when he was 18. He worked in different kitchens, including those belonging to the French Embassy in London. Roux went to Algeria to carry out his military service, and to work as a chef in Paris before returning to the UK a second time, which is when he opened Le Gavroche with his brother (via CNN).

Le Gavroche was not just important because it offered a new way to lure British into trying haute French cuisine, it also became a place for some of London's best and brightest to discover a new way to prepare food. As Albert's son Michel Roux Jr points out, "He was a mentor for so many people in the hospitality industry, and a real inspiration to budding chefs, including me," (via Le Gavroche). Other chefs who walked in Roux's shadow include Pierre Koffmann, Marco Pierre White, and Gordon Ramsay

Ramsay posted a photo of himself with the fine dining legend on Instagram saying, "So so sad the hear about the passing of this legend, the man who installed Gastronomy in Britain, we've shared the same office for the last decade and walking up those stairs today is going to be really difficult, thank you Albert for everything you gave me, God Bless you Chef."