TV chef Paul Flynn on why he turned his back on Michelin stars: 'It can be a torturous obsession'
Irish TV chef Paul Flynn has revealed why he decided to turn his back on chasing Michelin stars.
Flynn, chef and owner of The Tannery Restaurant in Waterford, worked in a London restaurant which had two Michelin stars for ten years.
After living in the “Michelin star funnel” of chasing yet another Michelin star for a decade, Flynn said he decided to leave it all behind.
“Most chefs are obsessed with the Michelin guide. When I was younger, I was a head chef of a two-star restaurant in London that eventually got three stars and I saw how it can take over your life and it becomes more than a passion.”
“I have mixed emotions about [Michelin]. But yet, like every other chef that I know in Ireland, in my own little way I’m obsessed with it. But then I suppose for ten years of my life I was working at this level in London. Every day you wake up, we had two stars, you want to try for three.”
“In a way it made no sense, every single waking moment was that. It’s like being a funnel in that it’s the only thing that’s important to you. And then, all of a sudden, you step out of that funnel and you see that, oh, maybe I will go fishing.”
Flynn, who spoke on the Irish Independent Talks stage at the National Ploughing Championships today, said obsessing over a Michelin star can be torturous. He added that if a chef loses a Michelin star, they don’t receive any feedback from the guide as to why.
“I think sometimes it can be a torture and it can transform your life for the better in terms of bringing you new business. But also if you lose it, you can really damage your business.”