PARIS — Christian Millau, who built the Gault & Millau restaurant guide series and was among the originators of the nouvelle cuisine food movement, has died at age 88.

The Gault & Millau publishing house announced Monday that Millau died Sunday. It did not provide details, but described him as “impertinent and independent.”

Born in 1929, Millau started as a journalist and joined Henri Gault to produce their first restaurant guide in 1969. It sold 100,000 copies and evolved into a French diner’s staple. The series uses a rating system based not on stars, but the number of “toques” or chef’s hats.

Millau preached against food fads and for a focus on fresh products and minimal sauces and seasonings. He was credited with discovering chefs such as French restaurateur Joel Robuchon.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.