Guillaume Brahimi (born 11 August 1967 in Paris, France) is a French-born chef based in Sydney, Australia. He is currently head chef of Guillaume at Bennelong restaurant located at the Sydney Opera House.
Brahimi's career began in France, where following a two-year apprenticeship at Aux Charpentiers he secured a position as Commis at the three-star Michelin restaurant La Tour d'Argent, eventually graduating to Chef de Partie after several years. In 1986, at the age of 19, Brahimi took up an opportunity to work with the French master chef Joël Robuchon at Robuchon's Jamin restaurant in Paris. Over the course of four years Brahimi progressed through the ranks to the position of Sous Chef, before deciding to relocate abroad.
It was Sydney, Australia that Brahimi chose as his new home. Here he opened his first restaurant, Pond in Kings Cross, which quickly found favour with diners and critics alike, earning the establishment Two Hats from the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide within months of opening.
Following this successful venture, Brahimi accepted an offer to captain the restaurant Bilson's (later renamed Quay) at Sydney's Circular Quay. Between 1995 and 1996, Brahimi lifted the restaurant from its mediocre stature to Two Hat status. By 1998 the restaurant had earned Three Hats from the Good Food Guide, joining the ranks of the few elite Sydney restaurants to earn this accolade each year.
In 2001, Brahimi secured the contract to run the prestigious Bennelong restaurant at the Sydney Opera House. The restaurant underwent extensive refurbishment and opened later that year, renamed Guillaume at Bennelong.
Since its opening, Guillaume at Bennelong has garnered numerous awards from such publications as Conde Naste Traveller and Gourmet Traveller magazine. The restaurant was also awarded Two Hats in the 2004 and 2005 editions of the SMH Good Food Guide, and eventually Three Hats in 2006 and 2007. The restaurant however fell back to Two Hat status in 2008.
Brahimi has written food columns and articles for the Sydney Morning Herald and other publications. He is also actively involved in a number of charities, having hosted several charity events at his restaurant over the years. Outside of life in the food industry, Brahimi is known to be an avid rugby fan, and a keen supporter of the French National Rugby Team.
In December 2013, Brahimi is a crew member aboard racing supermaxi yacht Perpetual Loyal in the 2013 Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, with his other celebrity crew members, Karl Stefanovic, Larry Emdur, Tom Slingsby, Phil Waugh and Jude Bolton.
Brahimi's food has been described as "contemporary Australian cuisine with French influences". His dishes seek to celebrate Australian produce, articulated in modern style through French technique. The dishes might range from his signature East-meets-West entree, "Basil infused tuna with mustard seed and soy vinaigrette", to Italian-inspired "Roasted marron wrapped in proscuitto with risotto, veal jus and truffle", to dishes closer to the classical French repertoire such as his "Duck Confit with pommes pont neuf, foie gras and truffle".
Brahimi has been an in-house chef on the Australian version of Iron Chef on Channel Seven, specializing on French cooking. He has also been featured as one of the presenters of French Food Safari alongside Maeve O'Meara on the SBS Australia Network, and he has appeared as a guest on both MasterChef Australia and Junior MasterChef Australia. In the fourth series of MasterChef Australia in 2012 the last six contestants worked under him for one day at his restaurant Guillaume at Bennelong, cooking a meal for sixty people as part of the competition.
Brahimi is a supporter of the Bestest Foundation and its Gala Dinner. Bestest raises funds for children who fall outside the standard boundaries of the larger established charities and helps get these children support to battle an illness, obtain equipment for disabilities, gain access to education or provide urgent assistance to children at risk. 100% of all funds raised goes directly to children in need. In 2008 over 50 chefs from Australia’s best restaurants participated with teams from Matt Moran (Aria), Neil Perry (Rockpool), Philip Johnson (E’cco), Shannon Bennet (Vue de Monde) and Scott Hallsworth (Nobu).
- Guillaume At Bennelong | Guillaume Brahimi
- 2007 Winners - Entertainment - smh.com.au
- 2008 Good Food Guide Awards - Good Living - Entertainment - smh.com.au
- "Sydney to Hobart 2013". Perpetual. 2013-12-02. Retrieved 2013-12-02.
- Presenters | Guillaume Brahimi