French cuisine: In a class of its own
In 2010, the ‘gastronomic meal of the French’ was inscribed by UNESCO on its Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
This decision reflects the exceptional standard of French cuisine and was informed by several characteristics in particular:
- the use of fresh, preferably local products and complementary flavours
- careful selection of dishes reflecting the terroir and diversity of France and its regions
- food and wine pairings
- a beautiful table setting
- the conversations and rituals associated with each meal
Celebrating important life events
Traditionally, the French mark life events by coming together and sharing a good meal, all while celebrating the importance of being with family and friends and enjoying delicious food made using natural ingredients.
Service à la française
The ‘gastronomic meal of the French’ is a ritual that begins with an aperitif and ends with a digestif. Between these two beverages are at least four courses: an appetiser, a fish and/or meat course, a cheese course and dessert. All of this is accompanied by bread and wine, of course!
From selecting to savouring products
Hosting family and friends begins with a trip to the market. Here, you can exchange knowledge, tips and ideas with producers and fellow cooks.
Back at home, everyone in the kitchen has a part to play, as parents pass their know-how on to their children. The gastronomic meal of the French doesn't just consist of food, however; setting the table is also important.
Finally, it's time to eat and all senses kick in: smells from the kitchen, the sight of a beautifully set table, the taste of a delicious meal, and perhaps even the touch and sound of one too, depending on the dishes served!