Alain Ducasse Was The First Chef Ever To Set This Michelin Star Record

Michelin stars are an elusive yet coveted mark of culinary fame. While vague, the criteria is states that Michelin reviewers take into consideration the quality of ingredients used, cooking techniques, consistency, and how chefs express their own personality through presented dishes (via the Michelin Guide).

In an interview with Fine Dining Lovers, Michelin Guide's International Director Gwendal Poullennec provides advice for chefs chasing favorable reviews: "Most of the time the highest awards come when the chef and team focus on the client. They forget about the star and just produce an authentic experience." For Chef Alain Ducasse, such advice wasn't needed.

Born on a farm in Southwestern France, Ducasse entered the culinary world at a young age. When he was only 16 years old, Ducasse began working in restaurants (per Ducasse Paris). When he was 33, he received his first three-star Michelin rating for Le Louis XV, a French restaurant in Monte Carlo (via Harvard Business Review). Yet this was only the beginning.

Committed to memorable culinary experiences

"Everything counts, from the plate and what surrounds it, to the smile of the person who welcomes you, to the setting and table arts," Ducasse told Explore France, "We have to find just the right balance and harmony so that the meal stays etched in memory."

Michelin Guide Asia gave a behind the scenes look into one of Ducasse's restaurants: a "Cabinet of Curiosity" showcases plates selected by Ducasse himself, and the menu exemplifies Ducasse's belief in locally-sourced produce: seasonal dishes blend area-specific flavors with French technique (steamed foie gras, smoked lobster with eggplant and coriander, and French-style chocolate with buckwheat sorbet).

Ducasse's culinary prowess has earned him triple Michelin stars at three different restaurants in three different countries: Monaco, Paris, and London (via University of Houston). But while he currently holds the distinction of the most Michelin Stars in the world (an impressive 17 per 24/7 Wall St.), Ducasse's determination and grit may be even more impressive. In 1984, Ducasse was the lone survivor of an airplane crash, and, though injured, he remained focused on creating memorable dining experiences for guests around the world (per The Staff Canteen).