A model for entrepreneurial celebrity chefs, Bocuse created the Bocuse d'Or global cooking competition in the 1980s, whose finals once were held at Epcot.
Bocuse is the most celebrated French chef of the postwar era who emerged as the very first chef who developed a modernized version of French cuisine in the late 1960s and early '70s. Among his signature dishes was a soup made of truffles and foie gras in chicken broth, baked in a single-serving bowl and covered in puff pastry.
"Much more than a father and a husband, he is a man of heart, a spiritual father, an emblematic figure of world gastronomy, and a tricolore porte", his family said in a statement.
Gomez, who met "Mister Paul" several times, said Bocuse was the first to widely appear in the media so that chefs' work was better recognized.
Mr Bocuse, who died after a long battle with Parkinson's disease, helped shake up the food world in the 1970s with the "nouvelle cuisine" revolution and created the idea of the celebrity chef.
The statement is signed by Bocuse's wife Raymonde, their daughter Francoise, and his son Jerome who he had with another companion. "Mr. Paul loved life, sharing, transmission, and his crew".
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Paul Bocuse, a renowned chef credited with transforming French cuisine, has died at age 91, the French interior minister said Saturday. "These same values will continue to inspire us forever".
He was also a larger-than-life character who reportedly referred to himself in the third person, told People magazine in 1976 that women were "good cooks, but they are not good chefs" and maintained two long-term extramarital relationships while also having a series of shorter affairs.
"His name alone summed up French gastronomy in its generosity and respect for tradition but also its inventiveness", the French president said.
Emmanuel Macron described him as "the incarnation of French cuisine" and "a mythical figure". "The chefs cry in their kitchens, at the Elysée and everywhere in France".
Announcing the death, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb tweeted that "Monsieur Paul was France". Simplicity and generosity. Excellence and art of living.