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France Gastronomic Weekend

Bailliage Nouvelle Aquitaine, France
Eugénie-les-Bains (Landes), December 3-4, 2021

Festival of innovative flavours
« Lunch was a fireworks display of flavours »

Friday 3 December: dinner at the Ferme des Grives
An exceptional experience, with a dinner offering an explosion of flavours and textures.

Saturday 4 December: lunch at the Grande Table
Dominique Naboulet, our Bailli Provincial of Nouvelle-Aquitaine, describes the experience.

On Saturday 4 December, Aquitaine’s most enthusiastic food-loving Rôtisseurs came together to pay tribute to the cuisine of the virtuoso and three-Michelin-starred chef, Michel Guérard at the “Prés d’Eugénie”, whose reputation has reached far beyond Eugénie-les-Bains in the Landes region for a long time now.

Michel Guérard honoured the guests with his kind presence, during which he described his first dealings with the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs 40 years ago in the USA. Our friend Kim Freeman, who was then a journalist in the US, told the story of an assignment that brought her to Eugénie to write about the cuisine of this chef, who was touched by these memories and anecdotes.

Lunch was a fireworks display of flavours, where each spark represented one of the chef’s most iconic dishes. The wines served were regional choices: Tursan Blanc 2016 and Baroco des Landes 2012.

The after-dinner liqueurs were served in the lounge in front of roaring fires, where our friends were able to share their thoughts on this festival of innovative flavours.

Saturday 4 December: dinner - a lean, healthy menu at the Orangerie restaurant
Georges Groslière, Chevalier of the Bailliage of Singapore is our reporter for this event.

After enjoying two very different meals on Michel Guérard’s estate, we then went on to the Orangerie restaurant to “savour” a lean, healthy menu, another speciality of this great chef.

To start with, we were welcomed with a surprise cocktail: a glass of sulphur water from the estate’s thermal baths, mixed with lemonade - an original flavour, but perhaps not the best cocktail we’ve ever had. The purpose of the drink was to purify the body before the meal.

When we sat down to eat and the menu was revealed, the first thing that surprised the guests was the number of calories it contained: 580! We all wondered if it would be enough to satisfy us.

By the time we had finished, we were pretty impressed by this lean menu. It was good, well presented, tasty and very high quality. A wonderful experience for our group!

Michel Guérard has successfully embraced lean cuisine. He has written a book, and if you flick through its pages, you realise that lean food doesn’t necessarily mean simple food: quite the contrary, it can be very sophisticated and is designed to create a good meal with fewer calories.

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