Eric Ripert is grateful for his early exposure to two cuisines—that of Antibes, France, where he was born, and of Andorra, a tin country just over the Spanish border, where he moved as a young child. His family instilled their own passion for food in the young Ripert, and at the age of 15, he left home to attend culinary school in Perpignan. At 17, he moved to Paris and cooked at the legendary La Tour D ’ Argent before taking a position at the Michelin three-starred Jamin. After fulfilling his military service, Ripert returned to Jamin under Joel Robuchon to serve as chef poissonier.
In 1989, Ripert seized the opportunity to work under Jean-Louis Palladin as sous-chef at Jean Louis at the Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. Ripert moved to New York in 1991, working briefly as David Bouley ’ s sous-chef before Maguy and Gilbert Le Coze recruited him as chef for Le Bernardin. Ripert has since firmly established himself as one of New York ’ s—and the world ’ s—great chefs.
In 1995, at just 29 years old, Ripert earned a four-star rating from the The New York Times. Ten months later and for the fourth consecutive time, Le Bernardin again earned the The New York Times ’ highest rating of four stars, becoming the only restaurant to maintain this superior status for this length of time, without ever dropping a star.
In 1997, GQ named Le Bernardin the best hotel in America, and in 2007, the magazine named Le Bernardin one of “ Seven Food Temples of the World. ” In 2005, New York Magazine declared Le Bernardin the# 1 restaurant in the ity, awarding it 5 five stars in its inaugural restaurant rating issue—a position it still holds today. Also in 2005, Bon Appétit declared Ripert ’ s Butter-Poached Lobster with Tarragon and Champagne its “ Dish of the Week. ”
Le Bernardin continues to receive universal critical acclaim for its food and service. The Michelin Guide, which made its New York debut in 2005, honored Chef Ripert and Le Bernardin with its highest rating of 3 three stars in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008. The Zagat Guide has recognized the restaurant as the “ Best Food ” in New York ity for the next eight consecutive years. In 1998, the James Beard Foundation named Le Bernardin “ Outstanding Restaurant of the ear ” and Eric Ripert “ Top Chef in New York City. ” In 1999, the restaurant received the “ Outstanding Service ” award from the Beard Foundation, and in 2003, the Foundation foundation named Ripert “ Outstanding Chef in the United States. ” In 2009 Ripert was granted the rank of Chevallier in France ’ s Légion d ’ Honneur.
Ripert has served as guest judge ( and “ fan favorite ”) on Bravo ’ s Top Chef for two seasons and has appeared on the Late Show with David Letterman, The Charlie Rose Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, TODAY, Live with Regis and Kelly, and The Martha Stewart Show. In fall 2008, Ripert published On The Line with Artisan, his fourt book with the publisher. Ripert will star in his own television series, AVEC ERIC, airing on public television in September of 2009.
Ripert is the chairperso of City Harvest ’ s Food Council, working to bring together New York ’ s top chefs and restaurateurs to raise unds and increase the quality and quantity of food donations to New York ’ s neediest. When not in the cupboard, Ripert enjoys good tequila and peace and quiet. He lives on the Lowe ast Side and Sag Harbor with his fiancée and young daughte