Bushmills woman Clare Smyth has become the first British person to be named the world’s best female chef.
London-based Smyth, who opened Core by Clare Smyth last year in Notting Hill, was the only female chef in the UK to hold three Michelin stars when she ran London’s Restaurant Gordon Ramsay.
“This accolade is not for me but for all the women working in the hospitality industry around the world,” Smyth said.
“I hope to use this platform to encourage and mentor more women to achieve success.”
Smyth is known for her light and modern interpretation of classic French cooking.
Her informal approach is reflected in her choice of Notting Hill for her restaurant, rather than the traditional locations of Mayfair and Chelsea for fine dining.
At Core, she has dispensed with tablecloths and stiff service, offering new dishes such as a starter based around a single potato served with beurre blanc, herring and trout roe.
Smyth was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2013 Birthday Honours for services to the hospitality industry.
She was awarded a perfect ten score by the Good Food Guide of the UK’s 2015 and she won the Chef Award at the 2016 The Catey Awards, previously won by her mentor Gordon Ramsay in 2000.
Smyth left Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in 2016 to open her own restaurant, Core.
The Elit Vodka World’s Best Female Chef Award comes from the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, an organization that has gained influence since it spawned from a UK trade magazine in 2002.
This year’s winner of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants award will be announced on June 19 in Bilbao.