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Patrick Henriro and Joseph Viola at the Gastronome culinary studio

Patrick Henriro and Joseph Viola at the Gastronome culinary studio

As we reported Patrick Henriru (Patrick Henriroux), restaurant chef La pyramide (2 Michelin stars) in the city of Vienne (Vienne), located 30 kilometers from Lyon, and Joseph viola (Joseph Viola), restaurant chef Daniel et denise in the city of Lyon, received in 2004 the title of the best chef of France, who visited Russia in the framework of the Rhone-Alpes Region Festival, visited the Gastronome culinary studio.

Eminent French guests prepared a dinner of Russian products, and also shared their views on the development of cooking, child psychology, fast food and much more.

Interviews with Patrick Henriru and Joseph Viola read below.

The French in the culinary studio Deli: chef Joseph viola (the best cook of France of 2008, Lyon Bushon Daniel et Denise), sommelier George dos santos (best sommelier of france 2010) and chef Patrick Henriru (La Piramide, Vienne, 2 Michelin stars).

CorR.:. First, let’s understand what the word «classic» means in the cuisine of the Rhône-Alpes region?

Or let’s say this: what is the default for guests coming to your restaurants?

Patrick Henriru: The most likely question here is not even how and what we cook, but the fact that most of our guests have a huge culinary baggage. Residents of the Rhone-Alpes region who visit restaurants are amazing in themselves. These are not any ordinary tourists there — you know, who are always running and running.

They have already visited many places, tried a lot and, most importantly, understood products. Therefore, their expectations are usually very high, but at the same time they are quite balanced.

And above all, they certainly will not tolerate hackneyed products.

Joseph viola: Yes, I agree. And I think the same as our guests — nothing is more important than products. Maybe the fact is that Rhone-Alpes is generally one of the best places in France in terms of products (I can’t talk about the whole world, but in France that’s for sure).

Here we have a variety of restaurant styles, from traditional “bushons” to restaurants celebrated by the Michelin guide, such as Patrick’s restaurant, and a variety of products.

And there still lives a huge number of people who have retained the ability to work with these products — that’s what’s important.

CorR.: Is this a fresh trend, attention to products, or is this the traditional approach?

F. AT.A: No, it has long been in our culture, it has always been like this. It’s good, of course, that in Europe such an approach — as they now say, «bio», «organic» — is being confessed more and more often, but for us in the Rhone-Alps region it is absolutely normal and traditional.

Rather, do not pay attention to the product — it is not normal.

Patrick Henriro: Harmony reigns in the Rhone-Alp region. We are like a sunflower flower that stretches towards the sun.

In summer we cook summer food, in winter — respectively, winter food.

And everything moves in a natural way.

P. BUT.: As an example, consider the fish that we prepared today. Yes, beluga.

We bought it on the market in the already finished, prepared form — and for me it was very unusual and, frankly, not very natural.

Because at home I, as a rule, control everything that happens with fish, from beginning to end; at best, I even know the conditions in which she grew up.

But after all, how the product was processed before it came into my hands depends on how I will prepare it.
And this applies to everything, literally everything.

CorR.: One can not ask questions about the characteristic products of the Rhone-Alpes region.

P. BUT.: Oh, many of them!

We are located in the heart of France, and therefore we have the sea, the sun, the soil, the forests, and the mountains — and all the products that can be obtained under these conditions. By the way, for this reason we are perhaps the most demanding guests in restaurants. Say, when we come to Brittany and even come to the best restaurant, we see that they serve excellent seafood.

But at the same time, their vegetables are more than average; Clearly, the deficit of the sun.

And so — in any region of France. In Limousin there is good beef, in Alsace — pork and foie gras, in Provence — fish and tomatoes, but something else loses in quality.

And this gives the local cuisine some imbalance, which local chefs are forced to overcome. Harmony reigns in the Rhone-Alp region. We are like a sunflower flower that stretches towards the sun.

In summer we cook summer food, in winter — respectively, winter food.

And everything moves in a natural way.

CorR.: You are describing a pastoral picture.

Doesn’t something change over time?


AT.: Of course! First of all, the opinion of each guest of the restaurant is instantly made public.

He has lunch and between meals, writes to Twitter, Facebook and so on. This is happening right before our eyes — and you after all remember that we talked about our guests, about their advancement, which allows every second to feel like a restaurant critic.

So now the responsibility of the chef has grown many times.

Yes, it is pressure — but it is also an instant response, and it allows you to instantly correct inaccuracies.

P. BUT.: It is not that pastoral. You just have to take into account the fact that the vast majority of the great French bosses worked and continues to work in the Rhone-Alpes region.

And this situation creates a very rich background for any boss, and for any guest. It’s impossible to ignore the fact that Paul Bocuse’s restaurant is working a few kilometers from your restaurant, or someone from the house of Truagro, or a chef such as Georges Blanc. Obviously, our guests understand this, and this is one of the reasons why they consider it necessary to be so informed.

This atmosphere is especially thick in Lyon.

When you come there for a visit, the hosts first show you cultural sights, but all this time they keep in mind that it is necessary to take you at least two more places — to a gourmet restaurant, and definitely to a bouchon, a traditional family restaurant that is not found anywhere else in the world.

CorR.: Tell me, what do French cooks of your level cook at home?

P. BUT.: Oh, on the weekend I often cook myself. I open the refrigerator, look at the shelves, and cook.

And at first I cook for children, and then for adults.


AT.: Oh, me too!

CorR.: And what, children should eat absolutely other meal, than adults?

P. BUT.: Well, first of all it concerns sauces, seasonings, spices and all that stuff.

Do you know what Madras Curry is? You are unlikely to feed your child a sauce with a similar degree of spice, right?

Therefore, it is much easier to prepare a dish for children’s taste, and then adapt it to the taste of adults than to do the opposite.

Joseph viola: Fast food appeals to childish, uncomplicated emotions, comes up with gifts and atmosphere for them — but this has nothing to do with the more complex emotions that real restaurants turn to.

F. AT.: The issue of children’s nutrition is generally one of the most important issues in cooking.

Today, many go to restaurants with children, and those from an early age learn to understand what is tasty and what is tasteless. He is given an under-ripened peach, and the child says no!

CorR.: TOHow do you think this is a good trend or not?

P. BUT.: And so, and that way. On the one hand, the sooner the taste begins to form, the better.

On the other hand, it sometimes gets in the way — because sometimes a child speaks not only taste, but undeveloped taste, and this must also be taken into account.

CorR.: Speaking of undeveloped taste.

The problem of the upcoming fast food — how serious is it?

And what can fast food oppose?

P. BUT.A: Yes, this is serious.

First, the problem is that any diner can declare itself a restaurant.

I believe that such verbal inflation does not benefit the cause that we and our colleagues have been doing all my life.
In addition, it is necessary to take into account that fast food appeals primarily to children — and if, speaking about the taste of children, we agree that by nature it is not sufficiently developed and therefore needs to be developed, the same can be said about their emotions. Fast food appeals to childish, uncomplicated emotions, comes up with gifts and atmosphere for them — but this has nothing to do with the more complex emotions that real restaurants turn to; adults go to fast food to eat, and nothing more. But can the child as a result understand what our French “art of living” is?

I cant answer.

CorR.: You noted that the French are increasingly going to restaurants, and even Michelin restaurants, with the whole family.

How much is it available?

F. AT.: Well, it depends on the degree of steepness of the restaurant.

And it doesn’t even matter if it is a restaurant or a bushon.

For example, my bushon is special. The average bill in my bushon is 42 euros, while in the usual one it is around 25 euros.

There are several reasons. For example, my wine is better — and more expensive, and people are willing to pay a little more for this confidence in quality. And in a restaurant, for example, with one star, the average check without wine is about 70 euros.

Also, you see, not ruinous.

P. BUT.: In general, it makes no sense for us to lift the price up to heaven and sit in an empty restaurant. People should always come, the kitchen should always work.

Only this way is possible.

Illustrations: LLC "Bonnier Publications"/ I.Savkin

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