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Albert Roux Biography

The late Albert Henri Roux OBE, KFO

Chef Albert Roux OBE, KFO was head of the famous cooking dynasty behind such establishments as Le Gavroche which was the first restaurant in the UK to be awarded three Michelin Stars.

Albert RouxAt the age of 14 Albert Roux began his life-long passion with the culinary arts as he commenced his career as an apprentice patissier.

As a callow youth of 18 years, he came to the UK to spend time as a commis de cuisine in the old hierarchical environment within Nancy Astor's country home at Cliveden. Moving up the culinary ladder, he spent one year at the French Embassy in London, followed by his first tenure as a chef at the home of Sir Charles Clore in Belgravia. He was then called on to serve his Military Service in Algeria, during which time he was invited on occasion to cook for the Officers' Mess.

Upon leaving the Military, Albert took up the post of Sous Chef at the British Embassy in Paris, where he spent 2 years before leaving for the UK once again. He was employed as chef to Major Peter Cazelet at the family estate at Fairlawne, Tonbridge in Kent.

He stayed with the Cazelet family for eight happy years. It was the Cazelet family and many of their friends who encouraged and financially helped Albert to open his own restaurant Le Gavroche, which finally he did with his brother Michel in 1967.

Awards include:

  • 1968 Elected by his peers as Maitre Cuisinier de France
  • Chevalier du Merite Agricole
  • A founder member of the Academie Culinaire de GB, now renamed as the Academy of Culinary Arts
  • 1984 The Waterside Inn won the Catey Award for the best menu of the year
  • 1986 Honorary Doctorate of Science, Council for National Academic Awards, Bournemouth University
  • 1987 Officier du Merite Agricole
  • Honorary PhD, Council for National Academic Awards
  • Whilst still in charge of Le Gavroche, the restaurant won the prestigious Catey Award for Best Restaurant of the Year
  • 1994 Honorary Professor Hospitality Management, Bournemouth University
  • 1995 Winner of the Catey Lifetime Achievement Award (with brother Michel)
  • 1999 Waterford Wedgwood Hospitality Award
  • OBE
  • 2005 Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur
  • 2007-8 AA Hospitality, AA Lifetime Achievement Award
  • 2008 Winner of Silver Catey Award (with brother Michel)

In May 2019, Albert Roux was awarded the CIS 2019 Lifetime Excellence Award.

Sadly on the 4th January 2021  Albert Roux, OBE, KFO passed away at the age of 85 after having  been unwell for a while, his sheer love of life and passion for making people happy through his food will be greatly missed.