Executive Chef Laëtitia Rouabah brings a wealth of knowledge of traditional French cooking, as well as her love for fresh produce, to a modernized Benoit, Alain Ducasse’s flagship restaurant in the heart of New York City.
Laëtitia inherited her passion for cooking – with an emphasis on highlighting the natural beauty of ingredients – from her mother and grandmother, which inspired her to study culinary arts at the Chamber of Craftsmanship in Versailles. After graduating in 2004, she joined the team at the luxurious five-star Hotel Plaza Athénée, where she spent three years at the renowned Relais Plaza, rapidly rising through the ranks from line cook to chef de partie. It was here that she discovered and became immersed in the world of Alain Ducasse, and paved the way for her career.
In 2007, Laëtitia moved to London to lend support as Chef de Partie for the opening of Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester. A year later, she returned to France to join the team at Jules Verne, Ducasse’s iconic restaurant atop the Eiffel Tower, making her way from Chef de Partie to Executive Sous Chef in less than three years. She then moved on to become Executive Chef at Air France’s Salon La Première, the most exclusive first class lounge in the world, where she crafted dishes for prestigious clients daily, from presidents of nations to executives at Fortune 500 companies.
In 2013, Alain Ducasse took over Allard, one of the few remaining authentic, gourmet bistros in Paris, known for its generations of female chefs at the helm, and selected Laëtitia to carry on the legacy as Executive Chef. For three years, she brought her personal touch to the establishment while still honoring Allard’s rich heritage and identity.
As Executive Chef at Benoit, Laëtitia stays true to the spirit of quintessential bistro fare, focusing on using fresh market ingredients and utilizing sophisticated techniques to showcase the best of French classics. Unlike her predecessors, Laëtitia brings a more contemporary flair to her menu, drawing inspiration from New York’s diverse background to create familiar yet unexpected flavors.