Stephanie Alexander AO
One of Australia's most highly acclaimed food authors, Stephanie Alexander is the author of 14 books, including the Australian kitchen bible The Cook's Companion - found in 400,000 homes around the country - and is a renowned chef and restaurateur. In 2009 she published The Kitchen Garden Companion, an inspirational family guide to growing and using edible crops. Her 35-year career has spanned books, words, food and young people, and she is now preoccupied with giving back wisdom and experience in meaningful ways. In practical terms this has meant establishing the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation as a means by which to convince policy makers that learning about food, how it grows, and the pleasure it can bring are vital to a healthy, happy society.
For 21 years from 1976, Stephanie Alexander was the force behind Stephanie's restaurant in Fitzroy and then Hawthorn, a landmark establishment credited with revolutionising fine dining in Melbourne. From 1997 to 2005 Stephanie, along with several friends, ran the Richmond Hill Café and Larder, a neighbourhood restaurant renowned for its specialist cheese retailing. In her recently published memoir, A Cook's Life, Stephanie recounts how her uncompromising dedication to good food has shaped her life and changed the eating habits of a nation.