This Is The World's Top Chef, According To Michael Symon

Many regard Michael Symon as one of the best chefs on the scene today. The Cleveland native found ways to elevate BBQ culture, while receiving the title of Best New Chef from Food & Wine in 1998, according to his official website. Symon's restaurant Lola was later was named one of America's best restaurants in Gourmand magazine, and Symon eventually claimed a James Beard Award for Best Chef in 2009. A handful of his other restaurants have made best-of lists from multiple publications, and Symon can even claim the title of Iron Chef, per Food Network.

This formidable culinary star has truly earned his accolades, so when even he says that there's a chef that can easily top his abilities, it would be wise to take note. In a recent Tweet, Symon responded to a post regarding who should be named the world's best chef — the person asked, "Is it ok if I choose you 2nd after Jacques Peppin [sic]?" Symon humbly responded "Everyone should be after Jacques ... he should just be a given at 1... love that man." Anyone who garners this much respect from Symon should get taken seriously — and anyone who loves food should know about Jacques Pépin.

Who is Jacques Pépin?

Anyone who grew up with Julia Child may have encountered Jacques Pépin on television. According to PBS, these two chefs shared the stage on "Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home," and the series ended up winning a James Beard Foundation Award in 2001 for Best National Cooking Show. Pépin also co-authored a cookbook with Child based on the recipes they created on the show and received the title of Chevalier De l'Ordre National De La Legion d'Honneur from the French Government. The incredible cooking talent also trained at the Plaza Athénée from 1956 to 1958 in Paris and went on to serve as the personal chef for three French heads of state, including Charles de Gaulle, PBS adds.

Also her the bio, Pépin eventually found his way Stateside and served as a columnist at The New York Times, helped found The American Institute of Wine and Food, serves as a member of the International Association of Cooking Professionals, and sits on the board of trustees for the James Beard Foundation. This esteemed cooking personality really helped lay the groundwork for celebrity chefs everywhere, so it's no wonder Michael Symon holds him in high regard.