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The Springtime of French gastronomy

#GoodFrance / Gout de France will be celebrating the excellence of French cuisine all around the world, on March 21st. An event that Michelin has been a part of since its creation.

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Born in 2015, just after the inclusion of the « gastronomic meal of the French » on the UNESCO list of intangible cultural heritage, #GoodFrance will be celebrating, in 2018 for the fourth consecutive year, the vitality of French gastronomy. Their best ambassadors, their chefs, will come together for this special occasion. Around 3000 of them are expected this year, in 150 different countries.

What is the #GoodFrance event? The chefs taking part in this event will present a special “GoodFrance” meal inspired by French gastronomy.
For each restaurant, it’s about honoring, in the form of a meal, the excellence of French cuisine, its ability to innovate and the values it conveys: sharing and pleasure in a planet-friendly and healthy way. GoodFrance is about honoring French cuisine and culture and putting France in the international spotlight.

Alain Ducasse, underlined the multi-Michelin-starred chef, one of the event’s initiators. :

When you speak about food, especially French food, you’re talking about a zest of life, gracefulness, optimism and pleasure. Which are central ideas for France’s image as a destination

Alain Ducasse

This project is supported by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, mainly via its diplomatic network. Once again this year, embassies and consulates will be opening their doors (156 worldwide in 2017), to each host a dinner party.

Numerous restaurants will be participating with varied types of food: haute cuisine, quality bistro food, traditional food, contemporary cuisine... Schools of Catering with gastronomic training programs are also encouraged to participate via their own restaurants.

Participating in the Good France event means:

  • obtaining a label of excellence following selection by a Committee of Chefs
  • belonging to an international community of around 3000 chefs
  • promoting the visibility of France's culinary heritage
  • highlighting visibility among clients in France and abroad
  • increasing the restaurant's activity ratio. (each restaurant owner chooses the price of the #GoodFrance menu)

“Celebrating the excellence of French cuisine”

3 questions for

Claire Dorland-Clauzel,

Director of brands and external relations

Member of the Group’s Executive Committee

Why are Michelin supporting the #GoodFrance event?

Michelin are pleased to be a partner in the fourth edition of this event that will allow everyone, all over the world, to celebrate the excellence of French cuisine from these unique culinary experiences. Michelin has always aimed to improve the mobility of its customers and offer them the opportunity to live unique experiences during their travels. As a worldwide reference for restaurant guides, the MICHELIN Guide showcases new restaurants and reveals new culinary talents to the general public every year. So it seemed quite obvious to be part of the Good France / Gout de France event.

There is a long story behind Michelin and gastronomy, how would you explain the timeless success of The MICHELIN Guide?

The story behind Michelin and gastronomy is centuries old. It’s a story about a small guide that was thought up to help drivers traveling through France, at the start of the 19th century... A small guide that has become, over the years, a global reference. Its international expansion is the result of the excellence and consistency of our criteria and methods in Japan and the United States, in China and all over Europe, our method is based on unbreakable rules, meticulously respected by our inspectors: regular anonymous visits of restaurants, financial independence, choices based on precise criteria, annual updates of the entire selection. Contrary to popular belief, the MICHELIN Guide is not a restaurant address list, it is a rigorously chosen selection of the best restaurants around.

In 2010, UNESCO included ‘the French gastronomic meal” in the list of intangible cultural heritage. In your opinion, what part does the MICHELIN Guide play in this? Isn’t it the Michelin Guide’s vocation to be the ambassador of this French art of living?

Of course. I see in the culinary diversity of our regions that is emphasized by the MICHELIN Guide every year, a golden opportunity for tourists from around the world to discover the French gastronomic heritage. It boosts local employment, the excellence of our chefs benefits the whole industry: from the farmers who work the soil to the breeders, without forgetting the craftsmen and the hoteliers. A restaurant’s reputation can put a city and its region in the spotlight and strengthen its visibility, in France or abroad. Visitors don’t just come for the gastronomic aspect, they also make the most of the hotels and the entertainment on offer. Considering nearly a third of the tourists that visit our country, are attracted by our cuisine and our wine, I am delighted to see the whole local ecosystem benefit from the gastronomy that is showcased in the MICHELIN Guide. The international success of the MICHELIN Guide can be explained by it being both local and universal. As a reflection of global gastronomy, it strives to give restaurants pride of place and show off the excellence of gastronomy, synonymous with the French art of living.

MICHELIN Guides, over 30 editions around the world

When you talk about the MICHELIN Guide, it probably better to refer to the MICHELIN Guides.  The MICHELIN Guide represents today: 30 editions on 4 continents and in 31 countries. Starting off in Italy 60 years ago, after visiting Europe, the MICHELIN Guide has since traveled across and explored numerous culinary horizons, sometimes very far from Clermont-Ferrand!

Remember, our inspectors crossed the Atlantic in 2004 (New York City MICHELIN guide) before heading off to discover Tokyo in 2006 (2008 vintage). The movement has got even bigger these last few years.  After its first destination in Latin America in 2015 (Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo), no less than 4 new cities were awarded with Michelin stars and Bibs Gourmand in 2016: Washington DC, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore... And more recently, and to the delight of all our readers, our inspectors discovered the culinary selection in Seoul in Korea (2017); Taipei and Guangzhou in China and Bangkok in Thailand (2018). If, through these different editions, the destinations and cuisines are becoming increasingly varied, one thing remains the same: the rigor in the Michelin method. All around the world, our inspectors continue to crisscross the globe in search of the best restaurants to anonymously test them using the same criteria as the first ever MICHELIN guide.