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Conrad Gallagher's menu of boom and bust

Hotel Olympia (1985-1990):

Gallagher awarded four gold medals by Chef Ireland for his work as a trainee chef.

Plaza Hotel, New York (1990-92):

The chef becomes the youngest sous chef to work at the Donald Trump-owned landmark hotel.

Waldorf Astoria Hotel (1992-1994):

Recruited to work as a sous chef under famed chef Laurent Manrique at the New York hotel's Peacock Alley restaurant.

Also worked at Le Cirque, Restaurant Daniel, Le Bernadine and Park Avenue Cafe in NYC at the same time.

The White House:

Is commissioned to cook St Patrick's Day dinner for President Bill Clinton and guests in 1996.

Runs the Metropolitan Bar and Restaurant in Letterkenny, Co Donegal with his brother Keith.

Peacock Alley:

Opens his first restaurant in Dublin at the age of 24, winning a coveted Michelin star as head chef at the age of 26 after it moved from Baggot Street to South William Street and eventually the Fitzwilliam Hotel. Wins another Michelin star in 2000.

Opens Ocean seafood bar in Dublin's Charlotte Quay, as well as Lloyd's Brasserie (left, 1997) and Christopher's (1998) - later re-branded as Mango Toast in Dublin and Conrad Gallagher's Shaftesbury Avenue restaurant in London's West End in 2001. All ventures fail due to financial problems.

Leaves Ireland and emigrates to New York City. Traffic Bar and Restaurant - Manhattan:

Opens the New York eatery (2002) after marrying American Jennifer Harrison and leaving Ireland.

Obtains Irish passport through Irish embassy in London (November 2001) two weeks before he is arrested in connection with alleged theft of three Felim Egan paintings worth €11,000 from the Fitzwilliam Hotel and he is released on bail. Leaves for New York and applies for US citizenship.

Arrest and extradition (October 2002):

The Dublin Circuit Criminal Court issues a warrant for his arrest after he failed to show for a court appearance on theft and fraud charges for Egan paintings. (Later acquitted).

Hires notorious publicist Lizzie Grubman - who served 37 days in jail after pleading guilty to driving an SUV into a queue outside a nightclub, injuring 16 people - to promote his New York restaurant.

Gallagher is arrested outside Traffic (April 2003) and spends six weeks in notorious Brooklyn Federal Prison alongside New York mafia supremo Vincent 'The Chin' Gigante before being extradited to Ireland.

Acquittal (July 2003):

Breaks down in tears after a jury at the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court acquits him of all charges.

Moves to South Africa (July 2003):

Starts a consultancy firm for Sun International Hotels (2004) and opens the Geisha Wok and Noodle Bar in Cape Town, (below, 2007) which later went bankrupt (2009) after being placed in liquidation. Landlord, Hotel Cape Royale, claimed it is owed €85,000 in outstanding rent.

His consultancy wing, Conrad Gallagher CC, is placed under provisional liquidation (2008) for failure to pay a €129,000 loan to a finance company.

Western Cape High Court places a sequestration order (August 2009) for debts to the bank and catering equipment of more than €172,000.

Opens six Sundance coffee shops with his new wife, former South African model Candice Coetzee.

Leaves Cape Town after being declared bankrupt by South African court. Two of his properties and contents of his home are auctioned off to pay debts of more than €200,000.

Returns to Ireland (2009):

Opens Salon Des Saveurs restaurant (right) in Dublin (2009) and Conrad's Kitchen in Sligo town (2010) through his company Boutique Restaurants Concepts Ltd and Super Potato Ltd. Both companies are declared insolvent and wound down at the High Court in July 2011 over outstanding €166,000 tax bill. Liquidator appointed. Runs The Dining Room at La Stampa Hotel (left), in Dublin (June 2011) and stars in the reality cooking contest show Head Chef on TV3.

Returns to US (August 2012)

Works as a consultant chef at The Purple Fig in New York's Upper West Side, which closes shortly afterwards following a string of bad reviews and claims staff and suppliers were unpaid.

Moves to Las Vegas (April 2013):

Opens gourmet burger restaurant PoshBurger Bistro. It closes after three months amid claims by staff and suppliers of outstanding wages and bills not being paid.

Relocates to Orange County, California and is hired as consulting chef to Ways & Means Oysters (October 2013). Leaves after just four months and launches Vanity Catering and Events (January 2014) in Costa Mesa, California. Company no longer in business.

Returns to South Africa (November 2014)

Returns to Cape Town with his South African wife Candice and two sons and opens Cafe Chic, a trendy upmarket restaurant in the fashionable Gardens area of the Mother City.

Sunday Independent