Vivre la Cuisine – Michel Bras

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Michel Bras is one of the most iconic chefs that have ever lived.

He was born to a blacksmith–father and chef–mother in Gabriac in 1946. He schooled in a nearby town and from an early age started helping his mother tend her pots at the family’s hotel/restaurant, Lou Mazuc. Bras credits his mother with introducing him to the cuisine of Aubrac — the region of his birth and upbringing.

Michel never left the Lou Mazuc kitchen to train elsewhere, he studied culinary literature, philosophy and photography in his spare time and cooked from intuition – as he continues to do today. At thirty-three, he took over the inn from his parents and his innovative cooking led to Lou Mazuc winning two Michelin stars.

He continued here until 1992 when he opened the hotel/restaurant Michel Bras. It is an ultra–modern structure nearly all of glass with slate and granite, which sits on a plateau overlooking the landscape of Aubrac. In 1999, he was awarded three Michelin stars.

Michel has published several books under his name, including the seminal 2002 cookbook Essential Cuisine (which he took all the photos for himself). He also opened an eponymous restaurant in the Windsor Hotel Toya in Hokkaido, Japan in 2002.