Mooney, who took over the restaurant and seven bedroom hotel with his wife Nerys in 1973 after his twin brother and former owner Malcolm was killed in a car accident, was a key figure in the north west's dining scene throughout the 1970s and 1980s.
Renowned for his flamboyant manner, love of striped blazers, jazz music and Sancerre, Mooney ran the Cheshire restaurant for 25 years before he suffered a stroke leaving him unable to work.
Mooney's son Matthew now owns the restaurant with his mother an ambassador for the business. He paid tribute to his father, whose passion for Art Nouveau antiques remains one of his most visible legacies at the restaurant today.
“I know he would be delighted with what we have achieved at The Belle Epoque, particularly being awarded Two AA Rosettes in 2015 – it’s something I know he desired," he said.
Now in its 43rd year, the Belle Epoque is also a successful wedding venue. Matthew is owner and managing director of the restaurant and hotel and also owns the nearby Rose & Crown Chop House.