Jean-Christophe Novelli

Jean-Christophe Novelli

French-born Jean-Christophe began his culinary career early in life, from working in a bakery when he was 14 to becoming Head Chef to the Rothchild family in their private home by age 20.

In the early 1980s, Jean-Christophe moved to the UK to take on a position at the 5-star Chewton Glen, before working and living with the legendary British cook and restaurateur Keith Floydas as his ‘right-hand man’.

It wasn’t long before Jean-Christophe branched out on his own and opened a mini empire of multi-award-winning restaurants internationally. He is proudly still involved with his luxury brasserie, Novelli at City Quays Belfast, which sprawls across the ground floor of the AC Hotel Belfast by Marriott.

Mentoring budding home cooks is a cause close to Jean-Christophe’s heart, which is why he launched his award-winning cookery school over 15 years ago. Located in his Hertfordshire estate, the Novelli Academy Cookery School has been named among the top 25 in the world and continues to go from strength to strength.

Jean-Christophe has been recognised with several industry accolades, including AA Chefs’ Chef of the year UK, 5 out of 5 AA Rosettes, four individual Michelin stars, and Egon Ronay’s Best Dessert of the Year in the UK with Golden Spoon Distinction. Jean-Christophe also represented the UK as a finalist in the European Chef of the Year held in Copenhagen. Most recently, he received the QE Lifetime achievement at the British Restaurant Awards and was recognised with the honour of an MBE.

An avid sportsman and a proud father of four, Jean-Christophe is no stranger to the limelight having appeared on multiple shows since the 90s including Hell’s Kitchen, Celebrity X Factor, Jonathan Ross, Alive – Back to the Andes, Comic & Sport Relief, Celebrity Cribs, Family Fortunes, Shooting Stars, Bargain Hunt, Children in Need, Cooking With The Stars, his own US show Chef Academy, and even Celebrity Hunted UK, where he finished first. In 2024, Jean-Christophe makes his television debut as a judge on MasterChef Australia.