Monday’s whispers: a Star Passenger, the Michelin in Alsace, Laurent Gardinier for president (at R & C), David Chauvac at Imperial Garoupe, Carl Dütting at Bella with Eyal Shani, Mohammed Cheikh with the presidents in Algeria | Gilles Pudlowski’s blog

A Star Passenger

Aurélien Véquaud © GP

Aurélien Véquaud and Steve Moracchini, it’s the star duo, creative chef and pastry chef at the peak of their subject, who push the Passenger from Belles Rives de Juan-les-Pins to the top of the tables on the Côte d’Azur, in any case at 2 star level. The first who worked with Olivier Brulard at the Reserve and Arnaud Donckèle formerly at the Pinède, before earning a star in Corsica at the Palm Beach, is firing on all cylinders with its esquinado ravioli with platinum caviar and verbena foam, its roasted dentex with bone butter, chanterelle mushrooms, hyssop and black truffle or its Sisteron lamb wrapped in nori seaweed and fig leaf yoghurt served with mastery , while the second which does ultimately the tour of the room, siphon in hand, but turns his world upside down with fresh blueberries flanked by vanilla ice cream from Madagascar, long pepper and fresh goat cheese, also playing the great pastry classic at lunchtime at the beach table. In short, a fortiche and unique duo for a table that is unlike any other on the coast. Le Belles Rives, let us remember, is the sunny villa where Scott Fitzgerald once wrote “Tender is the night”. With them two, tender is life…

Steve Moracchini © GP

The Michelin in Alsace?

We announced it to you at the very beginning of the month: the Michelin will reveal the next release of the 2023 guide on August 30. And the announcement will take place at the Maison de l’Alsace, on the Champs-Elysées, in the presence of Gwendal Poullennec, the international director of the red guides. Mystery cleared? In his recent book (la Clé Anglaise published by Menu Fretin), Nicolas Chatenier, France manager of 50best and general manager of Grandes Tables du Monde, takes up information that appeared in the Latest News from Alsace on January 24, according to which this release should be done in Alsace, ” with a financial contribution of 390,000 euros excluding taxes by the European community of Alsace“. According to other sources, Nice would also be in the running for the reception of the exit of the Michelin and the sum committed would include an additional zero. It should be remembered that Alsace, which once had 3 “three-star” restaurants (the Crocodile, the Buerehiesel, the Auberge de l’Ill) no longer has a single one, even if the Chambard in Kaysersberg, the Fourchette des Ducs in Obernai and Villa Lalique are serious applicants and if the Auberge de l’Ill still holds its rank. And that houses like Jean-Luc Brendel’s Table du Gourmet in Riquewihr and Eric Westermann’s Buerehiesel are worth much more than their single star…

Laurent Gardinier for president (at R & C)

Laurent Gardinier © GP

The next Relais & Châteaux congress, which will take place in Venice next November, will see the election of a new president. Philippe Gombert, who will have succeeded Jaume Tapiès and cannot seek a new mandate, will give up his place after a decade of very discreet but uncontested presidency (he was elected in 2013) to a president who will undoubtedly be French (the only president off the border of the international chain of luxury hotels will have been the Catalan Tapiès). We were thinking, of course, of its charismatic vice-president, Olivier Roellinger. But this one, who printed the new eco-responsible side of the brand, does not feel the desire, at 67 years old next September, to take on such a charge for the next ten years. On the other hand, the function would fit like a glove to Laurent Gardinier, the only declared candidate for the moment. At 55, this former Sciences Po, holder of a DEA at Dauphine, the youngest of three siblings, engaged in luxury restaurants and hotels (Taillevent, 120 de Taillevent, Crayères in Reims), also present in caviar (“Le Comptoir du Caviar”) and oranges in Florida, has the qualities required for such a position and the time to devote himself to it. His sense of gourmet diplomacy – he holds a position of vice-president at the Grandes Tables du Monde – could also do wonders to bring together two if not competing, at least parallel institutions in the same sector. Note that we are also talking about Eléonore Guérard, one of the two daughters of Michel Guérard, 38, a graduate of Kedge Business School Bordeaux who directs the marketing and communication of the Chaîne Thermale du Soleil, who could also compete for the presidency. Or join Laurent Gardinier in his future office.

David Chauvac at Imperial Garoupe

David Chauvac and Gilbert Irondelle © GP

David Chauvac? We had known him as chef at the Relais & Châteaux Le Mas Candille in Mougins, succeeding Serge Gouloumès when the latter left for new horizons, keeping the star at home. This pure Provençal, raised near Cannes, then went to Corsica to La Roya de Saint-Florent. Then came back to the Côte d’Azur at the hotel La Pérouse in Nice. Here he is, since the start of the season, at the Imperial Garoupe, a gem of a hotel in Cap d’Antibes owned by Gilbert Irondelle, former CEO of the Crillon and the Beaulieu Reserve, for his restaurant Le Pavillon. Chauvac the discreet offers a skilful and light cuisine, creative and largely marine, inspired and sometimes daring. Langoustines cooked in the shell, purple artichokes and onion confit, emulsion of a dashi broth or sea bass back cooked on the skin, papillotes and tears of fennel, foam of marinière, have the answer.

Carl Dütting at the Bella with Eyal Shani

Carl Dütting © GP

He won “top chef objective” in 2017, left for the USA, returned near Cannes, answered the call of Eyal Shani, after the hasty departure of James Chauchat-Rozier, who was to take charge of the kitchen of Bella. The “rooftop” of the new Belle Plage hotel by Samy Marciano, which owns the Hôtel National des Arts et Métiers and the Bachaumont in Paris, offers the most beautiful view of Cannes over the sea from the heights of its new design hotel. Eyal Shani, king of Israeli street food in Tel Aviv, who runs 43 restaurants, including Miznon, Port Said, Ha’Salon, Abraxas North or Malka who has already spread his talent to New York, Paris and Melbourne, plays here the vegetables in majesty and raw, cooked, marinated fish in all forms, under the aegis of Carl Dütting, Frenchman with a Dutch-sounding name, who went to Tel Aviv, to understand the “Shani” spirit (aka @EyalTomato on instagram). He will also soon be in New York to follow the peregrinations of the Israeli chef in his new gourmet and truant adventures.

Mohammed Cheikh with the Presidents in Algeria

Mohammed Cheikh with Presidents Macron and Tabboune © DR

A journey of reconciliation, healing and friendship“, notes our friend Rachid Arhab who took part in the presidential trip during which Emmanuel Macron met his Algerian counterpart Abdelmadjid Tebboune. Of the 90 members of the French delegation, many personalities with Algerian roots such as the journalist Rachid Arhab already mentioned, the Chief Rabbi Haïm Korsia, the historian Benjamin Stora and the chef, winner last year of Top Chef, Mohammed Cheikh . ” Un memory engraved forever“, recalled the latter, born in France, in Montreuil, in 9.3, of Algerian parents, and who noted: “ Algeria (which) is also my country, is a magnificent country with incredible resources, with a cuisine full of generosity and steeped in history. » The moment of gravity and emotion: the visit to « Monument of the Martyrs“, emblematic place of the Algerian memory of the war of independence.

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