Goût de France/Good France 2015
Worldwide Celebration of French Cuisine - “Goût de France/Good France”
(19 March) Rich series of events in India
On 21 January 2015, Mr Laurent Fabius, French Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Development, along with world-renowned 3-Michelin-starred Chef Alain Ducasse, officially launched the “Goût de France/Good France” project. This special initiative celebrated French gastronomy worldwide, with over 1300 chefs serving a “French-style dinner” on 19 March 2015, on all five continents.
A selection committee of international chefs, headed by Alain Ducasse, unveiled the final list of restaurants participating in Goût de France/Good France”. They reviewed proposals submitted by restaurants all over the world, for a menu representative of French gastronomy following Chef Alain Ducasse’s general guidelines(cf. Note).
Given the importance attached to gastronomy in India, as well as in France, this international event was celebrated with remarkable resonance in India: 48 restaurants in India participated in the project, after selection by the committee of international chefs. With this massive participation, India ranked 4th in the world, after Italy (96), Japan (61) and Brazil (55), and just ahead of the United States (46).
A series of other events related to French gastronomy were also organized around the “Goût de France / Good France” project:
- On 10 March 2015, H.E. Mr François Richier, Ambassador of France to India, co-hosted the 5th annual reception of the Forum of Indian Food Importers (FIFI) at the Residence of France, with Mr Amit Lohani, Founder-Director of FIFI. Mr Xavier Thuret, “Meilleur ouvrier de France”, well known for his excellent work in fine cheese-making and an internationally renowned figure for the promotion of French cheeses, graced this annual cocktail reception. Regarded as the “flying cheesemaker”, he has travelled the world from Korea to Kazakhstan, Japan, the United States, and Brazil, where he has conducted training and tasting sessions.
- On 17 March 2015, H.E. Mr François Richier hosted a special dinner at the Residence of France, as a curtain-raiser to the “Goût de France / Good France” night, with a menu prepared in accordance with the guidelines for all participating restaurants on 19 March.
On this occasion, Ambassador Richier officially launched the smartphone application designed specifically for Indian tourists travelling to France “Chalo Paris”, which is now available for the general public: http://www.ambafrance-in.org/Chalo-Paris
- On 26 March 2015, Ambassador Richier hosted a reception at the Residence of France to celebrate the opening of the “Institut Vatel” in India (Gurgaon). Named after a famous seventeenth-century French chef, Institut Vatel is an international group of hospitality and tourism management schools in France and abroad. It trains future chefs in the best French tradition and spirit of innovation, with the budding talents having the opportunity of finishing their education in prestigious French establishments in Lyon and Nîmes.
During the Embassy soirée, Institut Vatel offered a wine tasting and wine workshop.
1. “Goût de France / Good France”: The menus submitted by participating restaurants to the selection committee of international chefs headed by Alain Ducasse, include:
- A traditional French aperitif: Champagne and gougères (plain or stuffed), or Iced cognac and foie gras
- A cold appetizer and a hot appetizer
- A fish or shell-fish course and one meat or poultry course
- Vegetables to represent the values of healthy eating and environmental responsibility
- One or a selection of French cheeses
- One chocolate dessert
- French wines and one French liqueur
The project “Goût de France / Good France” is rooted in a long-standing history. Back in 1912, the famous Chef Auguste Escoffier started the “Epicurean Dinners”: one day, one menu, served in cities around the world. In 2015, “Goût de France/Good France” took the idea further. This event marked the first concrete demonstration of French cuisine being listed under the UNESCO “Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity” category. Each participating restaurant has committed to donating 5% of the profits to a local NGO working in the health and environment sectors.
Event pictures can be downloaded on the Embassy of France in India’s Flickr account: https://www.flickr.com/photos/franceinindia/sets/72157649986994577/
2. Institut Vatel is an international group of hospitality and tourism management schools founded in Paris in the early 1980s by Mr Alain Sebban, the institute’s director for over 30 years. The group expanded internationally in the 2000s, rapidly developing branches in Asia, America and Africa. Vatel today has a chain of 25 branches in France and abroad.
This year, Vatel is opening an institute in Gurgaon, its very first in India. Some of their students will be given the opportunity to intern and finish their education at the Vatel Institutes in France located in Lyons and Nîmes.
It is the second such French institute to establish a franchise in India, the first being Le Cordon Bleu-GD-Goenka, which was opened two years ago in Gurgaon.