So good, so French
Good France is back in KL for the second year to celebrate French gastronomy with the world.
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-