Belfast Telegraph

Top chef Smyth 'honoured' by MBE

The first British female chef to hold three Michelin stars said she was "extremely honoured" to be awarded an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours.

Northern Ireland-born Clare Smyth is chef patron at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, having previously worked at Heston Blumenthal's The Fat Duck and The Waterside Inn in Bray, Berkshire.

She said: "When I was given news of my MBE I was speechless. I am extremely honoured to have been recognised by my country, I believe we are producing some of the best cuisine and gastronomy in the world at the moment in the UK and I am very proud to be British."

Ramsay, who hired Smyth more than a decade ago and is now in partnership with her, said: "Clare is an amazingly talented chef who very much deserves her MBE. I am incredibly proud of Clare and her achievements."

Smyth joined Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, in central London, in 2002 and worked her way up the ranks to become senior sous chef.

In 2005, she left the UK for a position at Alain Ducasse's Le Louis XV in Monte Carlo and upon her return, rejoined Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, where was appointed to the position of head chef in 2008.

Earlier this year, she was named chef patron of the establishment. She is not only the first British woman to run a three Michelin starred restaurant, but the only one.

The restaurant's website describes her cooking style as "modern French, using the very finest seasonal ingredients and employing both classic and modern techniques" and adds: "She has created a loyal and adoring customer base for her award-winning cuisine."

Smyth's latest honour comes after she was named Chef of the Year in The Good Food Guide 2013. The inspectors described her food as "both delicate and generous", praising her for "interpreting and adapting Gordon Ramsay's approach to modern French cooking and really making it her own".

She has also appeared on BBC food contest Great British Menu.

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