Tribute to Michel Roux OBE
It is with enormous sadness that we learn about the passing of Michel Roux OBE.
Michel Roux OBE was not only one of our greatest chefs, restaurateurs and authors, he was also one of France and Britain’s greatest patissiers, having won the coveted Meilleur Ouvrier de France in 1976, of which he was hugely proud. He had a legion of followers, both personally and professionally from across the world. Together with his brother Albert, he became legend in his own lifetime and a hero to many. He changed the way chefs cook, the way most of us think about and eat food and the vital importance of the front of house. He was Mr Hospitality. He was a perfectionist to his core, super generous with an insatiable sense of fun. In addition to his OBE and Legion d’Honneur, his industry awards would fill a book.
In the early 1980s. Michel was instrumental in establishing the Academie Culinaire de France (UK) (now the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts) and, fired by his own success as an MOF, he championed the Meilleur Ouvrier de Grande Bretagne (now the Master of Culinary Arts) which would not have happened without his perseverance, knowledge and contacts and now happens every four years. He was a huge supporter of Adopt a School back in the early 1990s often welcoming primary schoolchildren into the hallowed grounds of the Waterside encouraging them to think about food and eating in a healthy way and how food affects the mind and body. Even during recent years he took a keen interest in the progress of the RACA and Adopt a School, together with Alain, opening the doors of the Waterside Inn last September to host a fabulous fund raising dinner which raised record profits as well as boundless goodwill.
Michel Roux was, and is, a hospitality champion. His presence and influence will outlive us all.
Sara Jayne Stanes OBE
Royal Academy of Culinary Arts