René Pauvert won the Roux Scholarship in 1986 at the age of 23. He did stages at Joel Robuchon at the Jamin, Paris, and with Michel Roux at the Waterside Inn, Bray; with Emile Jung at Le Crocodile in Strasbourg and the Souffle Restaurant at the Intercontinental Hotel, London. He is now semi-retired, working as a consultant chef and teacher.

René was the first French winner of the competition and grew up in Nantes in the Western Loire. He first decided to become a chef after watching Michel Oliver on TV, started his career in a local restaurant L'Amphitryon in Nantes and went on to work in Brussels for three years at the Ramada Hotel.

In 1984, he moved to London and for 14 years he worked in two prestigious 5-Star institutions – The Grosvenor House and the InterContinental – where he held the position of Executive Sous Chef.

In 1998, René moved to Melbourne for the role of Chef de Cuisine at the city’s five-star Sofitel hotel, where he was Chef de Cuisine at their award-winning dining venue Le Restaurant. He was jointly responsible for winning Australia’s Best Fine Dining Restaurant Award, two years consecutively.

René moved to Armidale in August 1999 after being invited by the proprietor of Lindsay House to become a partner in the development, planning and direction of the restaurant and catering businesses. Whilst at Lindsay House the following awards were won: New England Regional Awards for Excellence 2000: Restaurant of the Year; Caterer of the Year and Best Modern Australian Restaurant. In the New South Wales Regional Awards for Excellence 2001, he won Caterer of the Year.

In March 2003, he opened René on the Mews, Moore Street, which served top quality produce and gourmet food at affordable prices. Since 2017, he has lived in Lemon Tree Passage near Newcastle in New South Wales.