Chef Epié started working at the age of 14 and trained with Roger Jaloux the iconic chef restaurant Paul Bocuse and Alain Senderens. He continued his career alongside Jean-Pierre Coffe at La Ciboulette. After he traveled the world and learned its cuisine he returned to Paris to receive the Michelin Star in 1989 at the young age of 22 (he still holds the record for youngest chef ever to receive the star). Before joining François Clerc in La Vieille Fontaine – Maison Laffite as head , they get a second Michelin star.
Worked as a chef at the following top Restaurants :
Miravile (owner), Paris; L’Orangerie, L.A; La Petite Cour, St. Germain, Paris.
After mastering Paris, he left in 1995 to explore US cuisine; not speaking a word of English, within a year was voted the Best Chef In America of 1996.
Voted Best New Chef by Food & Wine Magazine in 1996 for L’Orangerie in Los Angeles. Chef Epié took the restaurant from empty tables to being booked months in advance with his amazing light French fare.
Chef Epié is known for his rich bold tastes that he creates without butter or cream. No easy feat. “I use a lot of steam, and with this pure and simple way of cooking you must only use the finest products,” Chef Epié explains.
The culinary fusion of Epié’s French/California dishes has wowed a mixed crowd of gastronauts, top politicians, movie stars and supermodels around the world. They call him the “American Frenchy”. California greatly influenced Epié’s style of cuisine, “I was cooking for people who love to eat, but hate to put on weight. It’s the size 0 generation which is California’s ideal body shape”, he laughs. “There is a vast industry of thin over there, skinny isn’t just a trend: it’s the culture now.” So, Epié’s evolution in the kitchen became a take on Japanese, Korean, and Chinese dishes.
Catered Frank Sinatra 80th birthday; Catered Sophia Loren’s birthday
Cooked a Presidents Dinner for George Bush, Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford
Cooked for the King of Sweden, Sheik of Qatar, Bruce Springsteen, Slash, Sharon Stone, Michel Polnareff, Gregory Peck, Richard Gere, Elizabeth Taylor, and Princess Diana.
After ten years in the US, Chef Epié’s dream restaurant location became available, right off of the Champs Elysée and he felt the pull to return to the most critical gastronomic stage in the world, Paris, with everything he had learned.
Unlike most French chefs, Gilles loves America and Americans, he keeps current with the politics and culture, he isn’t the chef who only knows food, he believes food needs a context.
Gilles Epié currently owns and runs Citrus Etoile (opened August 2005) with his wife former model/actress Elizabeth Epié.NY Times and Condé Nast Travel both listed Citrus Etoile as a “must visit” new restaurant in Paris 2006. Condé Nast Traveler 2006 named Citrus Etoile as one of the Top 100 Hot Restaurants In The World (returned to Paris 2005). Citrus Etoile was chosen to be a member of the Châteaux & Hotels Collection – Tables remarquables in 2007. Best Restaurant in Paris to do “a business lunch” 2008.
Chef Epié was on the panel of judges on Israel’s Iron Chef 2008.
Gayot’s Best Chocolate Soufflé 2009 Gayot’s.
Chef Epié is currently the expert food correspondent for the BBC.
Chef Epié is a true culinary contortionist.” (New York Times Review)
Chef Epié has been named the “chou chou” (darling) of the journalists. The critics come in to Citrus Etoile to eat when they aren’t working to speak and learn from Gilles. The critics not only enjoy Chef Epié’s food, but his company, for all of his acclaim, he is still not a snob and extremely accessible.
Chef Epié doesn’t believe in chefs who claim to have recipes passed down through generations or secret ingredients he strives to evolve every day and sees himself as his only true competition.
Chef Epié surprisingly never opens a cookbook, he explains that the freshest ingredients of the day tell him what they wish to become.
Chef Epié and Citrus Etoile are both on Twitter and Facebook where he personally uploads pictures and videos of his delicious food several times a day.
Go to YouTube to find just a few videos of Chef Epié discussing his craft from Los Angeles to Tel Aviv.
Citrus Etoile was recently feature in Alain Ducasse’s latest book, “J’Aime Paris” (p.127) as one of his favorite restaurants in Paris.
Gilles is constantly a guest on various French television cooking shows, but he was also a big success in December 2011 when he appeared on M6’s MESSMER’s special. Messmer, one of the world’s greatest hypnotists, put the great chef under and had him believing a famous French actor, Bruno Solo, was one of the top food critics in France.
In February 2012, he traveled along with 4 other Michelin star chefs in the MSC Splendida as part of their special cruises. That year he was also invited to be part of the 25th anniversary celebration of Alain Ducasse‘s Louis XV restaurant held at Monte Carlo.
In May 2012, Chicago’s Culinary Crossroads paired seven internationally renowned chefs with some of their local stars; Chef Epie was paired with Chef Martial Noguier.
Chef Epié was also featured in a small group of top chefs in the cookbook “La Truffe” from the restaurant Maison de la Truffe to celebrate their 80th anniversary in November 2012 with 80 truffle recipes.
Frenchy’s, his French Bistro, opened in April 2013 in the International Terminal 2 at the Charles de Gaulle Airport and is a favorite among travellers. To celebrate it’s opening the chic French magazine, Paris-Match did a huge spread featuring Gilles and his wife, Elizabeth, having a black tie picnic on the wing of an American Airlines Boeing Jet.
In 2013, Citrus Etoile was awarded the Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence, which recognizes the top 10% institutions in the world rated by travelers.
Gilles did two seasons (2013-2014) of his reality show in France for Canal+/Cuisine+, “Dans La Vraie Vie D’un Grand Chef.”
His reality show and restaurant success lead to 20 thirty minute episodes of his cooking show “Un Frenchy en cuisine” which aired on Canal+ in 2015.
In March of 2015, Gilles was chosen and invited to cook two nights in New York by the Chefs Club Food and Wine Magazine.
In May 2015, Chef Gilles was selected as the sole chef to create and cook for the French Gastromic Week event in the Mauritus Islands, La Clef Des Champs, Floreal. He fell in love with the culture and the people and is looking into opening a restaurant in the area.
Gilles is proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Citrus Etoile in 2015. Gilles is a rare chef who loves technology and is always upgrading his website and blog. He loves staying in contact with his fans through social media be it Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Whosay.
In 2016, the chef Epié was spotted by a Canadian agency specialized in culinary elite: Sapphire Talent Lab. This company select group of inspiring thought leaders and traiblazers : firstname.lastname@example.org
On any given day, you can find cameras following Chef Epié around his kitchen discussing his cuisine, the economy and its effect on the food industry. When not filming in Paris, Gilles is traveling the globe to educate students, master chefs and international celebrities in their kitchens around the world.
When people ask Gilles about his impressive past, the humble chef, says “Google me, you will find out a lot more”.