Yesterday Chef Paul Bocuse, the creator of Nouvelle Cuisine, died at the age of 91 years. His restaurant L’Auberge du Pont de Collonges outside Lyon held three Michelin stars for the past fifty years! The Gault-Millau guide named him ‘Chef of the Century’! Bocuse was the first Chef to marry cooking with sound business principles, creating a brand for himself and his cooking.

Tributes are pouring in for this world-famous chef, described as ‘the incarnation of French cuisine’ by French President Emmanuel Macron, who added that he ‘profoundly changed’ French cooking, and created an association of tradition yet inventiveness to it. 

The French Interior Minister Gérard Colomb Tweeted about him: ‘Mr Paul was France. Simplicity and generosity. Excellence and art of living. The pope of gastronomy leaves us. May our chefs, in Lyon, as in the four corners of the world, long cultivate the fruits of his passion’. 

Chef Alain Ducasse said of the super chef: ‘He has been a leader. He took the cook out of the kitchen’. Bocuse was associated with Nouvelle Cruise, being lighter and less opulent that classic cuisine. 

Top American Chef Thomas Keller of Per Se and French Laundry described Bocuse as follows on Twitter: ‘Chef Paul changed our lives and the lives of millions. He set the example for chefs and restaurateurs. He helped us understand the importance of evolution, teaching, mentoring, sharing, and building meaningful relationships. Join me in celebrating his  exemplary life’. Leading Danish Chef Rene Redzepi of Noma in Copenhagen added: ‘RIP Paul Bocuse – sleep well Chef, and thank you for a lifetime of work and inspiration’. 

Bocuse loved butter as an ingredient, his recipe for a top restaurant being fresh produce, good and trusted kitchen staff, and happy diners. He was known for his consistency as a chef, loving the marriage between butter, cream, and wine. His most famous dish was Truffle Soup V.G.E., a mix of truffles and foie gras in a chicken broth, baked in a bowl covered with puff pastry, 

He worked hard, and said of his success: ‘To stay at the top, there’s no surprise: the golden rule  is work, more work, and always work….. I work as if I’m going to live for a hundred years and enjoy life as if each day is the last’. 

Winner of numerous awards himself, the Bocuse d’Or was created as the most prestigious global Chef award, top chefs recognised biennially. 

Bocuse also owned a chain of brasseries, Wikipedia informs, in Lyon, called Le Nord, l’Est, Le Sud, and l’Quest. He owned nine restaurants in total. He wrote two books: ‘Paul Bocuse’s French Cooking’ and ‘Bocuse a la Carte’.  

Chris von Ulmenstein, WhaleTales Blog: www.chrisvonulmenstein.com/blog Tel +27 082 55 11 323 Twitter:@Ulmenstein Facebook: Chris von Ulmenstein Instagram: @Chris_Ulmenstein