The First Day I Got My Michelin Stars: Mirazur’s Mauro Colagreco

We get the world's most celebrated chefs to spill what it was like when they got their first Michelin stars.

Located on the French side of the Riviera—and overlooking a stunning view—Mirazur has earned a name for itself as being an idyllic spot to sit back and tuck into the refined cuisine that comes out of the kitchen.

Helming the ship is Argentine-Italian chef Mauro Colagreco. Colagreco arrived in France in 2001, where he worked with the likes of renowned chef Bernard Loiseau, who sadly passed away in 2003. Colagreco also worked under chefs Alain Ducasse and Alain Passard, before opening Mirazur in 2006. The restaurant received its first Michelin star within a year, and got its second Michelin star in 2012.

Here, we dive in with chef Colagreco to see how the red guide has influenced his life.

Dining at Mirazur comes with a beautiful view.
Dining at Mirazur comes with a beautiful view.

What was your first encounter with the MICHELIN Guide?
At [the now-defunct] El Racó de Can Fabes, the late Santi Santamaría’s restaurant in the village of Sant Celoni, 45 minutes north of Barcelona. It was awarded the coveted three Michelin stars and I can see why. I was amazed by the attention to details, the service and all the dishes—it was incredible!

What was it like the day Mirazur earned two stars?

It was one I’ll never forget. It was a real joy because our first Michelin star was awarded very soon after Mirazur opened, and we hadn’t really realized the extent of the effort needed to get a second. We had to work very hard, and it was a fantastic day when we got two stars.

What was the first thing you did after the restaurant earned two stars?

I congratulated my team and my family. More importantly, I thanked them for their hard work and unconditional support. It’s something that evolved through 11 years of dedication, and I never, ever take it for granted.

The calamares et bagna cauda at Mirazur.
The calamares et bagna cauda at Mirazur.

How much influence has the Michelin Guide had on your career?
Michelin stars have always been something I’ve aspired to—the first time I ever ate at a Michelin-starred restaurant, I fell in love with the world of fine dining. To me, Michelin stars are a recognition of the work we do and a sign of consistency. It is a guide that shines a light on the hard work of chefs around the world; it has helped to elevate the level of gastronomy, and encouraged chefs to break boundaries and be adventurous. Most importantly, it has helped many chefs continue to earn a living from their passion.

What advice would you offer to budding chefs aiming for Michelin stars?
Keep focused, don’t ever become complacent, and express your passion and creativity. Even though there will be moments when you want to give up, you need to be strong-minded. Hard work and dedication will win in the end.

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