Brunch

‘Chefs from the Garden of France to prepare and serve French-style dinners’

  • Aurélia Collard on what to expect at Good France 2021

Good France is a new long-term chapter in French culinary heritage, immersed in distinctive local identity, nature and environment, and respect for the land and for producers. The sixth edition of Goût de/Good France, an international initiative, is back with the aim of helping the profession in its sustainable transition and supporting chefs in their new role as ambassadors for more eco-friendly gastronomy, both from a human standpoint as well as regarding health, the environment, and taste education.

On the initiative of the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs and Alain Ducasse Enterprise, and in partnership with the Centre-Loire Valley Region, Good France 2021 is once again celebrating French gastronomy and its actors in France and around the world through a series of events organised to support the entire sector.

Brunch spoke to Embassy of France Cultural Attachée Aurélia Collard to find out more about the event.

When asked about the inspiration behind Good France, she explained that following the unprecedented health crisis which dominated 2020 and forced food industry stakeholders to constantly reinvent themselves for several months, now is a time for resilience, an eagerly awaited time for renaissance, to celebrate together the new face of gastronomy of the future.

“This year more than before, this event aims to highlight the expertise and convictions of these women and men over the next few months, who are passing on their tastes and values, and each day are shaping gastronomy of the future,” she commented.

Good France has always been a sensitive, environmentally aware, and powerful gastronomy, with a universal message for future generations to preserve the Earth and its wealth of resources.

In order to celebrate the best of the food sector, Good France 2021 will have the honour of showcasing France throughout the world, and in particular the cultural and culinary heritage of the Centre-Loire Valley Region (its local produce and traditional expertise), in partnership with the Centre-Loire Valley Regional Council and the Centre-Loire Valley Regional Tourism Board.

Embassy of France Cultural Attachée Aurélia Collard

Collard also shared that following Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Provence, this year, the Centre-Loire Valley Region will be celebrated, a historic symbol of the French art of living and excellence.

“At the vanguard of global action for the environment and more eco-friendly cuisine, this new edition has appointed the two-Michelin-star chef Christophe Hay as this year’s Ambassador.” Hay was recently named Chef of the Year 2021 by the Gault & Millau restaurant guide in recognition of his commitment to local, sustainable, and inclusive gastronomy.

Explaining what’s in store for this year, Collard informed us: “In order to promote its commitment to a ‘greener’ and more inclusive global gastronomy, this new edition will mobilise chefs from all over the Garden of France to prepare and serve ‘French-style’ dinners in several embassies and consulates across five continents.” She added that this will be a key ingredient in these exciting moments of exchange and sharing the rich variety of the Loire Valley produce and the spirit of the people who make this unique region.

Farmers, winegrowers, market gardeners, fishermen, harvesters, etc. will benefit from the multiple meetings which Good France will hold throughout the initiative, with the support of many chefs from the Centre-Loire Valley Region. The event also aims to promote the region’s heritage at international level, both in terms of its uniqueness and its diversity.

As the Garden of France, the Centre-Loire Valley Region has for centuries been shaping an exceptional way of life, opening a window onto French excellence which is still the pride and joy of its tourist industry. Collard shared that with its rich national heritage, the Centre-Loire Valley Region is a land of talents, adding: “Originating from the tables of the ancient kings of the Renaissance, its gastronomy is an ode to its fertile soils, its forests, and the rivers running through its vast landscapes.”

Goût de/Good France 2021 Ambassador two-Michelin-star chef Christophe Hay

The region’s food is inextricably linked to local cultural life, and Centre-Loire Valley Region is today at the heart of the new, thriving event season of the Nouvelles Renaissances 2021 festival, which celebrates the region’s historical reputation for creativity and bold innovation among all the arts, Collard explained.

This year, several gatherings and events with food and wine stakeholders from the Loire Valley have been lined up for this new cultural edition. “In close collaboration with the Good France 2021 programme, these events will aim to provide an experience of local, sustainable, and eco-friendly art of living throughout the region, drawing on all its history and resources,” she commented.

So, with local produce, producers, a friendly atmosphere, a sharing mentality, ethical restaurants, zero-waste cuisine, knowledge-sharing, and taste education, 2021 will be seen as a “renaissance” for food and its new eco-friendly challenges.