Jean-Christophe Novelli

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Jean-Christophe Novelli
Born (1961-02-22) 22 February 1961 (age 58)
Culinary career
Cooking styleMediterranean Style French

Jean-Christophe Novelli (IPA: [ʒɑ̃ kʁistɔf nɔvɛli]; born 22 February 1961) is a French celebrity chef.

Early life[edit]

Novelli was born in Arras, in the Pas-de-Calais department in northern France, in 1961, he left school at 14 and worked in a bakery before, at the age of 20, becoming a personal chef to the Rothschild family.


Novelli moved to Britain in 1983, working in several establishments including the Chewton Glen Hotel in New Milton, Hampshire, later running Keith Floyd's Maltster's Arms restaurant in Totnes, Devon, he won the first of two Michelin stars as Chef Patron at Gordleton Mill in Lymington, Hampshire and was awarded Best Outstanding Dessert by Egon Ronay before becoming head chef at the Four Seasons Hotel on Hyde Park Corner, London. In 1996 he founded his restaurant, Maison Novelli, in Clerkenwell, London, he opened further restaurants in London, France and South Africa (where his second wife is from). Novelli also expanded into the gastro-pub market, his first being The White Horse in Harpenden, Hertfordshire, he opened his first of many brasserie concept restaurants in the Double Tree Hilton Hotel in Liverpool but withdrew the brand after a mutual decision between the brand and the owner in January 2016 and is due to open in the soon to be built AC Marriott in the City Quays, Belfast, Northern Ireland.

In 2009 Novelli partnered with Dean Dunham to create The Dunham Novelli brand[1] Dunham Novelli Urban Bar Kitchen opened in Northamptonshire in February 2009. A [2] Novelli appeared in a promotional video of Dunham,[3] it was reported that more venues would follow and a fly on the wall documentary would be made entitled A Mad Frog and an Englishman. The bar closed down, no more were opened and the documentary did not transpire.

In 2013 Novelli launched recipe book, "Simply Novelli". In it he aimed to eliminate the myth that French cuisine is difficult and time-consuming to prepare.

Novelli Restaurants Limited[edit]

In 2016 The Novelli Restaurant Limited brand was created and the Restaurant Team devised three offerings mainly aimed at quality hotels. Terrané by Jean-Christophe Novelli - Brasseries, Bistro '61 by Jean-Christophe Novelli - Bistro style and Rapido by JCN Short menu concept and will be developing a further fine dining offering in the near future. Due to be completed in May 2016, Don Giovanni's Restaurant in Manchester will have a concept menu added to compliment their existing menu.


Jean-Christophe Novelli is a 5 out of 5 AA Rosette and multi Michelin Star award winning chef who has also been dubbed "The Nation’s Favourite French Chef", European Chef of Year finalist representing Great Britain, recipient of the prestigious Egon Ronay Dessert of the Year award. Voted Chef's Chef of the Year by his peers, his Novelli Academy has been voted one of the Top 25 Cooking Academies in the World, which he still owns and performs his own demonstrations.

On 5 September 2007 Novelli was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Arts from the University of Bedfordshire.

TV appearances[edit]

He appeared in the first series of The Games in 2003

In 2005 Jean-Christophe became one of two Head Chefs in the second series of Hell's Kitchen with Gary Rhodes. In 2006, Novelli appeared on The X Factor: Battle of the Stars, performing in a group with fellow chefs Aldo Zilli, Paul Rankin and Ross Burden.

He has been a contestant on Family Fortunes with his fiancée Michelle Kennedy and on 2 May 2007 appeared on the "You're Fired!" on BBC Two, the show following "The Apprentice" on BBC One.

2009 saw Jean-Christophe presenting his own show for Bravo TV (USA) called Chef Academy where he tried to train 9 aspiring chefs into professionals over a 10 part series (originally planned for 6 episodes).

In October 2010, he teamed up with the Potato Council for a nationwide competition called Master Spud which gave the winner a chance to star alongside him in a national TV advert. In 2012 Jean-Christophe was a judge on Britain's Best Chef (ITV).

In 2014 Novelli appeared on ITV's This Morning, ITV Loose Women. and the last Alan Titchmarsh Show on ITV. He later appeared on the Britain's Got More Talent on ITV2 in 2015.

Jean-Christophe performs many demonstrations around Europe, Russia and may parts of the World including Taste of Dubai and South Africa passing on his passion for cooking and trying to teach people to cook more healthily using little saturated fats, low sugars and no salt.

In late 2015 Jean-Christophe featured in BBC One's A Question of Sport helping the mystery guest cook in his academy.

January 2016 saw a lengthy appearance of Jean-Christophe showing the uses and benefits of Rape Seed Oil on the very popular BBC1 show, Countryfile.

He was also a member of the celebrity audience in Derren Brown's TV special "The Gathering".

In 2017 he was the judge for week four of the ITV show Culinary Genius.

The Novelli Academy[edit]

Jean-Christophe Novelli opened The Novelli Academy in 2005 which is based in his Hertfordshire home. During sessions in the Academy, Novelli promotes healthy cooking by replacing salt and sugar with his own unique flavours and reducing the amount of saturated fats.

Brand associations[edit]

Novelli launched a range of frozen ready meals in association with frozen food manufacturer Findus; these ready meals were discontinued in 2008 but the chef continues to endorse a wide range of various products and is always looking for new opportunities.

Since 2012 the Brand has been a supporter of Chiltern Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil from Tring, Hertfordshire.

In May 2016 Jean-Christophe became a brand ambassador for Mitsubishi Motors UK.

Personal life[edit]

Novelli has been divorced twice, his first wife, Tina, was of English descent; he has a daughter from his first marriage, Christina Novelli (born 1985), who is a musician and songwriter.[4][5] He married his second wife, Anzelle Visser, from Stellenbosch in South Africa, in 1999. At the time she was a model and also worked at Maison Novelli, they divorced in 2005. Novelli got engaged in November 2007 to his girlfriend of 2 years, Michelle Kennedy.[6] On 29 August 2008, Kennedy gave birth to a boy (Jean Frankie) in Los Angeles.[7][8] In July 2012, Kennedy gave birth to another son (Jacques) in St Johann in Pongau, Austria.[9]


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  4. ^ "Candy Bar Girls - Channel 5".
  5. ^ "Christina Novelli - Listen and Stream Free Music, Albums, New Releases, Photos, Videos".
  6. ^ "Celebrity chef Jean-Christophe Novelli and fiancée expecting first child : Celebrity Baby Blog". Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  7. ^ Diana Pilkington (7 October 2008). "Jean-Christophe Novelli says 'I'm alive again' as he proudly shows off his week-old son , Mail Online". The Daily Mail. UK. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  8. ^ Wyatt, Petronella (26 October 2007). "In bed with 'ze world's sexiest chef' Jean-Christophe Novelli". Daily Mail. London.
  9. ^ Novelli, Jean-Christophe. "Introducing new baby son Jacques Jean-Christophe Novelli invites you to his country home to share his recipe for happiness -HELLO MAGAZINE - Jean-Christophe Novelli".[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]