So good, so French

Good France is back in KL for the se­cond year to cel­e­brate French gas­tron­omy with the world.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TASTE - By SHArMILA NAIr star2@ thes­tar. com. my

ALAIN Du­casse has said that talk­ing about French cui­sine is talk­ing about joie de vivre ( the joy of liv­ing), del­i­cacy, op­ti­mism, and plea­sure – ideas that are all cru­cial to the im­age of France.

It is also one of, if not the most, revered cuisines in the world and listed as an “In­tan­gi­ble Cul­tural Her­itage of Hu­man­ity” by UNESCO in 2010.

France and the French peo­ple have ev­ery rea­son to be proud of their cui­sine, and hence “Gout de France” or “Good ( Taste) France”, a cel­e­bra­tion of French gas­tron­omy around the world was born last year.

The event is in­spired by the 104- year- old Au­guste Es­coffier’s Les Din­ers d’Epi­cure ( Epicurean Din­ners) tra­di­tion, dur­ing which one menu is served to as many guests as pos­si­ble world­wide in one day.

In 2015, the first edi­tion of Good France took the idea fur­ther, bring- ing all cat­e­gories of restau­rants to­gether, con­nect­ing over 1,000 restau­rants across 150 coun­tries to par­tic­i­pate in a global de­gus­ta­tion din­ner – a tast­ing menu of a care­fully cu­rated meal to give din­ers an idea of what French gas­tron­omy is all about.

The se­cond edi­tion of this in­ter­na­tional event on March 21 hopes to mark, once again, the con­crete demon­stra­tion of French cui­sine’s in­flu­ence around the world.

More than 1500 chefs, 150 em­bassies and 150 coun­tries are par­tic­i­pat­ing in Good France. The event also wel­comes new par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries namely Al­ba­nia, Bangladesh, Myan­mar, Gu­atemala, Mali, Mon­tene­gro, New Zealand, Su­dan, Suri­name and Swazi­land.

Good France din­ner will also be made avail­able on Air France pre­mium flights for 24 hours through­out the world, as well as Po­nant cruises to Gre­nadines, Belem, Cabo Verde, Brazil and the Philip­pines.

In­stead of one set menu, Good France par­tic­i­pants are free to cu­rate their own menus based on a multi- course meal, and fresh, sea­sonal and lo­cal prod­ucts with French wines and spir­its, while re­main­ing free to high­light their own culi­nary cul­ture and tra­di­tions as well.

This year, in­stead of cel­e­brat­ing Good France on just Mar 21, par­tic­i­pat­ing restau­rants in the Klang Val­ley are mak­ing the spe­cial Good France menu avail­able for five nights from Mar 19 to 23. This move is to give more peo­ple the op­por­tu­nity to par­take in this global event and en­joy French cui­sine.

In Malaysia, five restau­rants and one culi­nary arts school will take part in this world­wide cel­e­bra­tion.

Soleil restau­rant 22A, Jalan 17/ 54, Seksyen 17 Pe­tal­ing Jaya, Se­lan­gor tel: + 603- 7932 5989 www.soleil.my

Bel­gian Chef Evert On­der­beke trained in French cui­sine at a culi­nary school in Bel­gium, and had worked in sev­eral French fine din- ing restau­rants in­clud­ing two years at a two Miche­lin- starred restau­rant with Chef Roger Sou­vereyns. On­der­beke takes go­ing lo­cal se­ri­ously with his Good France menu, which starts with a Pan­dan and Pineap­ple Cham­pagne aper­i­tif. Look out for Pa­hang’s finest as the chef serves Cameron High­land’s veg­etable mille­feuille and grilled tiger prawns from Rompin. Ducks make their way from Pe­nang, as the chef pre­pares slow- cooked duck­breast with specu­loos spices, greens and pommes dauphines. Price: RM270

DC restau­rant 44, Per­siaran Zaaba, ta­man tun Dr Is­mail, Kuala Lumpur tel:+ 603- 7731 0502 www.restau­rant- dc.com

Play­ing safe or small is ob­vi­ously not on Chef Dar­ren’s vo­cab­u­lary as he pre­pares three dif­fer­ent menus for this cel­e­bra­tion. Cus­tomers can pick from the seven- course, five­course or three- course meals which cel­e­brate lo­cal in­gre­di­ents as much as pos­si­ble while still re­spect­ing the spirit of French gas­tron­omy. This in­cludes lightly poached spiny lob­ster from Mers­ing, Jo­hor and con­gee us­ing mud crab from Pu­lau Ke­tam, Se­lan­gor. He also looks to France for the farm- raised French rab­bit sad­dle, foie gras ganache with Yel­lowfin tuna, cold capellini with sea urchin and slow roasted French An­jou pi­geon. Price RM248 ( three course); RM348 ( five course); RM428 ( seven course).

Nathalie’s Gourmet Stu­dio Unit A4- 1- 5 So­laris Du­ta­mas Jalan Du­ta­mas 1, Mont Kiara, Kuala Lumpur tel: + 603- 6207 9572 www.nathaliegourmet­stu­dio.com

The rose among thorns, Chef Nathalie Ar­be­feuille is ris­ing up the oc­ca­sion by serv­ing a seven- course menu which cel­e­brates her love for France, at her learn­ing cen­tre- cum­restau­rant. A pro­po­nent of origi-

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