He was supposed to be in Paris this Monday for the launch of this year’s Michelin Guide but never arrived. The head of one of three 3 Michelin starred restaurants in Switzerland, the Frenchman Benoît Violier was found dead on Sunday morning. According to the police, Violier a keen hunter, appears to have taken his own life with a hunting rifle. An investigation is now underway.
In 2013 Benoît Violier was awarded chef of the year and in 2015 his restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville de Crissier was awarded the title of the world’s best restaurant by La Liste.
In 2012, at the age of 44, he took over the restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville de Crissier from Philippe Rochat. The restaurant had already been made famous by celebrated Vaud chef Frédy Girardet who retired in 1996. Rochat, considered by Violier to be his spiritual father, died suddenly in 2015 in a cycling accident while suffering from cancer.
“It’s a tragedy for his family, for the Hôtel de Ville and for Crissier” the town’s mayor Michel Tendon told 24 Heures. Vaud state councillor Pascal Broulis expressed his deep sadness to the family while praising everything the chef had done for the canton.
Originally from Charente-Maritime in France, Violier had just finished a 1,000 page encyclopedia on hunting wild birds. Voted chef of the year in 2013 by Gault et Millau, he was given the title of the world’s best chef when the Paris based restaurant guide of guides La Liste designated his restaurant the best in the world in 2015.