Culinary industry mourns the death of the ‘Godfather’ of avocado toast, Bill Granger

The late Bill Granger. Picture: Bill Granger Instagram

The late Bill Granger. Picture: Bill Granger Instagram

Published Dec 27, 2023


Celebrated Australian cook and restaurateur Bill Granger died on December 25, in London at the age of 54. Granger's family confirmed the news on Instagram.

"It is with great sadness that the family of Bill Granger announce he has passed away on 25 December at the age of 54. A dedicated husband and father, Bill died peacefully in hospital with his wife Natalie Elliott, and three daughters, Edie, Inès, and Bunny, at his bedside in their adopted home of London.

“He will be remembered as the King of Breakfast, for making unpretentious food into something special filled with sunshine and for spurring the growth of Australian informal and communal eating around the world.

“He will be deeply missed by all, with his loss most profoundly felt by his adored family, who are grateful for all the love and support that has been given.”

The self-taught cook built a global empire of 19 restaurants across Sydney, London, Tokyo and Seoul. He also wrote 14 cookbooks and created five television series.

Granger is best remembered as “creating” the avocado toast, with the dish appearing on the menu of his café, Bills, in 1993.

Several celebrities have paid tribute to Granger, including Jamie Oliver and Nigella Lawson, as well as Hugh Jackman and his former partner Deborah-Lee Furness, and singer Jason Donovan.

Lawson said she was “heartbroken” in a post on Instagram, while Oliver described the news as “heartbreaking”. Donovan described Granger as a “ray of Aussie sunshine” and a “wonderful man“.

Jackman and Furness said they would miss Granger's friendship “most of all”.

“His talent, his joie de vivre, the way he brought people together and his commitment to family were inspiring,“ they said in a joint statement.

Oliver wrote on Instagram: "Rest in peace dear wonderful Bill Granger. Shocking and deeply sad news to hear of his death today.... I loved @bill.granger so much, he was such a wonderful man, warm, charming, and had an extraordinary ease and style in cooking that could only come from Australia....

“Many moons ago I remember going to his first Sydney restaurant in Darlinghurst. It was so cool, so relaxed, great food and coffee and years ahead of its time.

“He was there in full effect so welcoming and just so nice.

“Bless you, Bill, love and respect brother! So much love to his family and friends."