Renowned three-Michelin-starred French chef Sébastien Bras has asked Michelin not to include him in the 2018 edition of its gastronomic guide to the country.
Sébastien, who is the son of Michel Bras and runs Le Suquet in Laguiole near Rodez, cited the “great pressure” involved in maintaining Michelin’s top honour.
He took over the restaurant that his father founded ten years ago.
The restaurant, opened in 1992, won its third star in 1999 and has held them ever since.
In a statement given to French news agency AFP, Sébastien declared that he wanted to “open a new chapter in his professional life without the reward of the red guide but with just as much passion for cooking”.
“At the age of 46, I want to give new meaning to my life: my professional life, my life in general, and to redefine what is essential,” he explained.
“This has been a beautiful challenge, a source of great satisfaction with the evolutions that we have brought about…yes, a great deal of satisfaction but also a great pressure which inevitably accompanies the distinction of the three stars that we were awarded in 1999.”
He added that he would continue to pursue excellence with his team at the restaurant.
Mrs Dorland-Clauzel, a member of the executive committee of the Michelin group told the French press: “It is the first time that a chef has asked us no longer to figure in the guide, and we take note of this request and respect it.”
Other chefs have effectively renounced their stars, notably Alain Senderens in 2005 at Lucas Carton in Paris, however that instance was slightly different because he had changed concept, according to Dorland-Clauzel.
In 2008, Olivier Roellinger closed his three-star restaurant in the Breton village of Cancale.
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