Born In: Churchill, Oxfordshire, England
Rick Stein is a renowned and award-winning English chef, restaurateur, cookery book author and a television presenter. As a chef, he is known for his passion for cooking with fresh and sustainable seafood. He has cooked for numerous eminent British personalities including Queen Elizabeth, Prince Philip, Tony Blair, Margaret Thatcher and David Cameron as well as the French President, Jacques Chirac and the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Along with his first wife and business partner, Jill, he opened his first restaurant – The Seafood Restaurant – in Padstow, Cornwall in 1975. Today, he runs a number of restaurants, cafes, holiday cottages, shops and a cookery school in Padstow, Cornwall (and even outside it). His contribution to the economy of Padstow is such that the place has been nicknamed Padstein. Outside Britain, he owns and operates Rick Stein at Bannisters – at two locations in Australia – with his second wife Sarah. On television, he has presented more than 30 television programmes including 12 cookery series. He is also known for pairing food and travel with television shows and cookery books. He has penned over 20 cookery books as well as a memoir.
Also Known As: Christopher Richard Stein
Spouse/Ex-: Jill Stein (m. 1975–2007), Sarah Burns (m. 2011)
father: Eric Stein
mother: Dorothy Stein
siblings: Henrietta Stein, Janey Stein, John Stein
children: Charles Stein, Edward Stein, Jack Stein
Born Country: England
Notable Alumni: New College, Oxford
City: Oxfordshire, England
education: New College, Oxford
awards: James Beard Award for Cookbook of the Year
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Christopher Richard Stein was born on 4 January 19470, in Oxfordshire to Eric Stein and Dorothy Stein. His siblings include a brother, John, and two sisters, Henrietta and Janey. He also has a half-brother from his mother’s first marriage whose name is Jeremy.
For his education, he first attended Wells Court, a preparatory school and later went to Wells House, Uppingham School and finally to a cram school in Brighton.
He grew up on a farm in Cotswold and enjoyed a privileged and idyllic childhood. However, his father, Eric – managing director of a distilling company – suffered from bipolar disorder and took his own life when Rick was 17.
Soon, Rick began his hotel management traineeship with British Transport Hotels at its Great Western Royal Hotel in Paddington. He worked there as a chef.
Rick’s father’s death had left him in turmoil, so he quit and went to Australia where he worked as labourer in an abattoir and as a clerk in a naval dockyard. Thereafter, he travelled to New Zealand and Mexico.
When he returned to the UK, he enrolled at the New College, Oxford and earned his degree in English in 1971.
After graduation, Rick Stein began running a disco and then opened a nightclub – along with his friend Johnny – in Padstow where he served Vesta meals. However, frequent brawls led to it being closed by the police.
The two still had a licence for a restaurant in the same building which they opened and continued to run. In 1975, along with his first wife Jill Stein, Rick Stein converted it into a small harbour-side bistro called ‘The Seafood Restaurant’.
The restaurant specialised in freshly caught local produce which were sourced from fishermen who were once the customers of his nightclub. Today, it is an award-winning restaurant with international reputation.
In 1985, he made his first television appearance as a guest chef in Keith Floyd's show Floyd on Fish. The following year, he once again appeared as a guest chef in Floyd’s television series documentary Floyd on Food.
Since then, he has presented numerous award-winning television shows including Taste of the Sea (1995), Fruits of the Sea (1997), Rick Stein's Seafood Odyssey (1999), Food & Drink', (1999), Rick Stein's Seafood Lover's Guide (2000) and Rick Stein's Food Heroes (2002).
Rick Stein has also travelled around the world to explore best of the region's food for his shows. These shows include French Odyssey (2005), Rick Stein's Mediterranean Escapes (2007), Far Eastern Odyssey (2009), Rick Stein's Spain (2011), Rick Stein's India (2013), Rick Stein: From Venice to Istanbul�(2015), Rick Stein's Long Weekends (2016), Rick Stein's Road to Mexico�(2017-2018) and Rick Stein's Secret France�(2019).
He has explored more regional food in television movie documentaries Rick Stein's German Bite (The German Odyssey, 2013) and Rick Stein's Taste of Shanghai (2016).
Since the opening of his first restaurant, Rick Stein has opened more restaurants. In Padstow, Cornwall, he opened ‘St Petroc's Bistro’, ‘Rick Stein's Café’ and ‘Stein's Fish & Chips’ restaurant.
Again in Cornwall County, he opened ‘The Cornish Arms’ pub, ‘Ricks Stein’s Falmouth’ restaurant and ‘Rick Stein, Fistral’ restaurant.
Beyond Cornwall, he has opened restaurants – with his name – at four other locations – Winchester, Poole, Marlborough and Barnes.(Apart from this, he has also opened a cookery school and four shops – a patisserie, a gift shop, ‘Stein’s Fishmongers & Seafood Bar’ (selling fresh fish and pre-prepared seafood dishes) and Deli (selling jams, biscuits, chutneys and relishes as well as wines and Cornish homeware) – in Padstow.
In October 2009, Rick and Sarah Burns (who he later married) opened Rick Stein At Bannisters in Mollymook, a scenic coastal town in Australia. The chef in the restaurant use freshly caught seafood to prepare their dishes.
Nine years later, in 2018, the second Rick Stein at Bannisters opened in Salamander Bay, Port Stephens.
His other television works include TV movie documentaries, Rick Stein and the Japanese Ambassador (2006) and Rick Stein in du Maurier Country, (2007) as well as a genealogy documentary series, Who Do You Think You Are? (2009). His latest television series documentary is Rick Stein's Cornwall (2021).
Apart from presenting numerous television series, Rick Stein has authored a number of cookbooks too; many of them have been companion books for a television series.
Apart from writing cookbooks, he has also penned his autobiography, Under a Mackerel Sky: A Memoir, which came out in 2013.
In 2003, Rick Stein was awarded OBE (Officer of The Most Excellent order of the British Empire) for services to West Country Tourism.
In 2015, he won two Lifetime Achievement Awards – the first at National Restaurant Awards and the second one by the Food Writers Guild.
In 2016, Rick, and his first wife and business partner, Jill, were honoured with a Special Award at the prestigious Catey Awards recognising their work in building a global brand over 41 years.
In 2017, he won the Best Food Personality at the Observer Food Monthly Awards. The same year, he was presented with a Special Contribution Award at The Travel Media Awards and an Outstanding Contribution to Travel award at the National Geographic Traveller Awards.
In 2018, he was appointed CBE�(Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) for his services to the economy.
Apart from these, he has also won Food Personality of the Year award at the 2004 BBC Radio 4 Food & Farming Award; a special award for outstanding services to Cornwall at the 2002 The Cornwall Tourist Award; the Chef of the Year award at the 1999 Catey Awards and the Television and Radio Personality award at the 1995/96 The Good Food Award.
Rick Stein first married Jill Newstead in 1975. The couple have three sons – Edward, Jack and Charles. They divorced in 2007. His sons are now involved in his business.
He met Sarah Burns in 1997 and married her in 2011.
He is associated with numerous charitable organisations including the Padstow Youth Project, National Mission for Deep Sea Fishermen, the National Coastwatch Institution, the Dyslexia Research Trust and The National Trust.
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