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Raymond Blanc's Biography

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Raymond Blanc was born in Besançon near Dijon, in France, in 1949, the son of a clockmaker.

He became a famous chef and restaurateur and the central figure in BBC Two's The Restaurant.

Raymond Blanc's various jobs when he was young included working in a factory and as a nurse.

In 1972, he came to England, where he got a job washing dishes in a restaurant.

He moved up the ladder to waiter, but when he criticised the chef's cooking, he found himself the target of missiles such as a copper pan and ended up with a broken nose and jaw and had to go to hospital!

Raymond Blanc then worked as a waiter at the Rose Revived in Newbridge, near Witney, and was soon promoted to chef and helped the restaurant achieve an entry into the Michelin Guide.

In 1977, Blanc and his first wife Jenny established their own restaurant, Les Quat' Saisons in Oxford.

Les Quat' Saisons was soon named Egon Ronay Restaurant of the Year and received Michelin Stars.

In 1984, Raymond Blanc took his vision one step further when he relocated and established an hotel and restaurant, Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons in Great Milton, near Oxford.

Blanc also expanded his interests to include a chain of Le Petit Blanc brasseries (relaunched in 2006 as Brasserie Blanc) and The Raymond Blanc Cookery School.

In 2007, Raymond Blanc became known to a wider audience. In a role akin to Lord Sugar in The Apprentice, he appeared in the BBC series, The Restaurant, in which couples competed to win the chance to run a restaurant backed by Blanc.

In 2001, the BBC reported that Raymond Blanc likened serving a microwave meal to children to an "act of hate".

In contrast, in 2003, the BBC reported how Raymond Blanc created the Florette Sea and Earth Salad, costing over £635.

Raymond Blanc has been awarded an OBE.

In 2010 he hosted the 8-part BBC2 series Raymond Blanc: Kitchen Secrets.

In 2015, he hosted Kew on a Plate.

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