Andrew Fairlie (pictured above) had been diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2005
Tributes have been paid to MasterChef: The Professionals star Andrew Fairlie, who has died following a long illness.
The 55-year-old stepped down from his Gleneagles restaurant, which is the only one in the UK to hold two Michelin stars, in November after announcing his terminal diagnosis.
The renowned chef had been diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2005 and had received chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
He had also undergone surgery but was told last June no further treatment was available.
Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at the luxury Perthshire hotel was established in 2001 and is the only one in Scotland with two Michelin stars.
He appeared on the Masterchef: The Professionals show in 2011, where alongside chef Greg Wallace, he set out to find Britain’s next culinary star.
As part of the process, two contestants were dispatched to Andrew Fairlie’s exclusive restaurant at the 5 Star Gleneagles Hotel, Perthshire, to cook alongside the criticallyacclaimed chef. The contestants were put through their paces in Fairlie’s kitchen during a busy restaurant service, cooking for real, paying customers
His wife, Kate Fairlie, and his daughters, Ilona and Leah, issued a statement on behalf of the family.
They said: ‘We are utterly heartbroken that Andrew has gone but are so thankful we had this extraordinary man in our lives.
‘He was a beautifully kind, generous loving son, father, husband, brother and friend, and enriched the lives of anybody lucky enough to meet him. He has taught us so many lessons in life, not least to be kind.
Andrew Fairlie (right) met the Queen (left) in 2005 when he cooked for her and 44 world leaders
Andrew’s father Jim Fairlie tweeted to announce the death of his ‘beloved son Andrew’
‘He worked incredibly hard and his favourite thing to do was to create magic for us in the kitchen at home.
‘We will miss his calm, wonderful spirit, his cheeky sense of humour and his loving nature.’
His father Jim revealed the news on Twitter, saying: ‘It is with enormous sadness and grief that Kay and I announce the death of our beloved son Andrew.
Andrew Fairlie (pictured above) has died after a long-term battle with a brain tumour
Nicola Sturgeon also paid tribute to the chef saying ‘it was a privilege to know him’
Andrew Fairlie (centre) and his Perthshire Kitchen Garden in June 2014
‘His wife Kate and his family have kept vigil with him for some weeks. He slipped away quietly this morning but his many achievements & memory will live on.’
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also paid tribute to the chef saying ‘it was a privilege to know him’.
She added: ‘I’m so sorry to hear that Andrew Fairlie has died. My deepest condolences to his family.
Alex Salmond said Andrew had ‘outstanding gifts’ and was a ‘world ranked chef’
Andrew Fairlie (right) and chefs attend as Relais & Chateaux present ‘Diner Des Grands Chefs London in 2013
‘Andrew is gone far too soon, but his achievements will always be remembered and his legacy will inspire the next generation of world class chefs.’
Fairlie won the first Roux Scholarship in 1984 and was crowned chef of the year at the 2018 Food and Travel Magazine Reader Awards.
Stephen McLaughlin, current head chef of the restaurant, and general manager Dale Dewsbury said: ‘We are heartbroken that Andrew has gone and our thoughts go out to Andrew’s wife, Kate, and his family.
Tributes were also made by Celtic Football Club who said their ‘thoughts and prayers’ went out to Andrew’s parents, his wife and family
A private funeral will take place and later this year a memorial service will be held at the Gleneagles Hotel (pictured above)
‘Our sadness is matched only by our tremendous pride in all his achievements and our thankfulness that we had the opportunity to share in his life and career.
‘We have lost our colleague, mentor and friend who was always on hand with great judgment, humour and inspiration.
Andrew Fairlie (pictured above) won the Outstanding Achievement Award in 2013
‘We will miss him terribly but will take strength and huge pride in continuing to burn the flame of outstanding cuisine, service and culture that he established.’
A private funeral will take place and later this year a memorial service will be held at the Gleneagles Hotel.
Andrew Fairlie was born in Perth and grew up in the city’s Letham area. At the age of 15 he began training under Keith Podmore. He had been encouraged by Podmore to enter a competition that the Roux brothers had established in 1985 for the The Roux Scholarship.
He won the scholarship at the age of 20, after being refused employment at a kitchen in France. It was the scholarship which propelled his career as it gave him the opportunity to train with French chef Michel Guerard at Les Pres d’Eugenie in Les Landes.
After returning to the UK, he held a number of high esteemed roles until returning back to his native Scotland and opening the Gleneagles restaurant.
In 2002 he became Scottish Chef of the Year and the restaurant was also rated the as one of the world’s best restaurants by Hotels Magazine.
During the G8 Summit in 2005 he cooked for the Queen, along with other world leaders. One year later, he scooped the prize of the AA’s ‘Chef of the Year’ award.
In 2011 he was named Relais & Chateaux Grand Chef du Monde, one of just seven in the UK and one year later restaurant Andrew Fairlie topped the Sunday Times Food List of the top 100 UK restaurants.
In 2013 he won the ‘Outstanding Achievement Award’ at the Scottish Style Awards.
Andrew Fairlie (pictured above) won a scholarship at the age of 20 which propelled his career as a chef