Bill Granger Chef, dies aged 54

Bill Granger Chef, dies aged 54

Bill Granger chef, who brought avocado toast to the masses, dies aged 54

It is with great sadness that the family of Bill Granger announce he has passed away on 25th December at the age of 54. A dedicated husband and father, Bill died peacefully in hospital with his wife Natalie Elliott and three daughters, Edie, Inès and Bunny, at his bedside in their adopted home of London.

Born in Melbourne, Australia, Bill was a self-taught cook who became a celebrated global restaurateur and food writer with a career spanning over 30 years. In 1999, he and his wife Natalie began a professional partnership that launched the business globally. Together they built a successful business that today has 19 restaurants across Sydney, London, Greater Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka and Seoul. Bill authored 14 cookbooks, made 5 TV series and most recently was honoured with the Medal of the Order of Australia in January 2023.

He will be remembered as the ‘King of Breakfast’, for making unpretentious food into something special filled with sunshine and for spurring the growth of Australian informal and communal eating around the world. He will be deeply missed by all, with his loss most profoundly felt by his adored family, who are grateful for all the love and support that has been given.

Bill Granger Chef, dies aged 54

Death Cause of Bill Granger

Sad news has emerged as Bill Granger, the visionary behind London's renowned restaurant group Granger and Co., as well as a string of international restaurants operating under the name bills, has passed away at the age of 54. His demise occurred on Christmas day.

Granger, a self-taught culinary maestro, made a significant decision in 1993 when he left art school in his native Australia to embark on a culinary journey. His first venture, the namesake bills, emerged in Sydney's Darlinghurst neighborhood, setting the stage for his influential career. It's important to note that his bills establishment should not be confused with the UK-based restaurant group Bill's, which was founded by Bill Coulson.

Bill Granger was a trailblazer in introducing a laid-back and straightforward approach to food, with a special emphasis on breakfast and brunch – a contribution that earned him the affectionate title of the "godfather of avocado toast."

His impact extended far beyond the confines of Australia, where he successfully exported a fresh wave of Australian food culture. Previously, the global perception of Australian cuisine was often limited to either high-end Pacific influences or simple barbecue fare. Granger's commitment to quality, simplicity, and a sense of community, exemplified by the iconic communal tables at the original bills, resonated universally. This approach transcended Australia's borders, establishing a new benchmark for contemporary cafe dining worldwide.

In 2008, the bills brand ventured into the international scene, making its mark first in Tokyo with four establishments, followed by London under the name Granger and Co., and then Seoul, where two restaurants were established. With the bills restaurants in Australia, Bill Granger's culinary empire comprised an impressive total of 19 restaurants globally.

While avocado toast stands out as one of Granger's most iconic creations, his lasting impact may well be attributed to the broader resurgence of brunch among a younger demographic of diners. While establishments like The Wolseley had successfully revitalized breakfast in London with a European grand cafe elegance, it was Granger and Co. in London and the bills establishments worldwide that brought a more youthful and informal approach to high-quality morning meals for this new generation of restaurant-goers.

Seven years after opening the first bills cafe, Granger found success in a new endeavor—writing. His debut book, titled simply "Sydney Food" and published in 2000, received widespread acclaim, benefitting from the popularity of his cafes.

Author Rachel O'Conner celebrated Granger's debut book, noting, "Waking to blinding sunshine requires bold, fortifying flavors on the breakfast table. Recipes like banana maple porridge with buttered apples, French toast stuffed with peaches, and toasted coconut waffles with fresh mango set the tone for a lazy weekend on the beach." This first publication was followed by an impressive eleven more cookbooks. The New York Times honored Granger as the "egg master of Sydney," while the Telegraph bestowed upon him the title of "the king of breakfast." In a particularly noteworthy tribute in 2016, The New Yorker declared Granger as "the restaurateur most responsible for the Australian cafe's global reach." His cookbooks achieved international acclaim, selling over a million copies worldwide. Much like his restaurants, these culinary guides embodied an approachable style, advocating for familiar ingredients treated with simplicity and care—a culinary philosophy found in his establishments across the globe.

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