A central figure in the gourmet food and restaurant industries was gay American chef James Beard. He was the author of numerous culinary books and an original star of cooking television. He created the James Beard Foundation which annually gives out the U.S. gourmet restaurant industry's top awards for culinary achievement, the James Beard Awards.
In addition to James Beard, there are numerous LGBTQ chefs around the world with outstanding reputations for their restaurants, cuisine, cooking books, and television shows. They inspire all of us to be creative in the kitchen, eat well, and enjoy life to the fullest.
Consider the following LGBTQ chefs:
- David Bartka, United States. Former television and film actor, now co-owner of Gourmet M.D. in Los Angeles. Married to actor Neil Patrick Harris.
- Cat Cora, United States. Former host of television show 'Iron Chef America', she has been inducted into the Culinary Hall of Fame.
- Tiffani Faison, United States. Runner-up in the inaugural season of television show 'Top Chef'.
- Laurence Isaacson, Great Britain. Co-founder of the restaurant chain Groupe Chez Garard with 24 restaurants in the U.K. Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
- Allegra McEvedy, Great Britain. Television host, author, and restauranteur, she is a Member of the Order of the British Empire.
- Yotam Ottolenghi, Israel. Founder of the Ottolenghi chain of delis in the U.K., and chef-owner of restaurant Nopi. LGBTQ activist.
- Yigit Pura, Turkey. Inaugural winner of the television show 'Top Chef: Just Desserts'.
- Rita Sodi, United States. Native of Florence, Italy, she is the chef-owner of 'I Sodi' restaurant in New York City.
- Jody Williams, United States. Chef-owner of Restaurant Buvette in New York City and Paris, she is also a judge on the television show 'Chopped'.